Obama: Bush a failure as world leader

042407obama.jpgDemocratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama said Monday that President Bush has fallen short in his role as leader of the free world, and the 2008 election is a chance to change that.

“This president may occupy the White House, but for the last six years the position of leader of the free world has remained open. And it is time to fill that role once more,” Obama said in a speech to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

The Illinois senator was in his hometown to deliver a foreign policy address that was rescheduled last week after the shootings at Virginia Tech.

Dancing the Iowa two-step

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa — Marvin Smejkal has a problem.

The political season has started so early, he can’t find enough sound and lighting technicians for all the big political rallies his Cedar Rapids company is being hired to run.

It’s nine months until the Iowa caucuses, but Democrats aren’t waiting for the traditional rolling start of the campaign.

Candidates push environment on Earth Day

042307obama.jpgDemocratic presidential rivals Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama (right) and John Edwards campaigned separately in Iowa Sunday as they urged thousands to make environmental protection a top campaign issue.

Dems erode GOP fundraising edge

National Democrats have nearly eliminated the fundraising advantage that their Republican rivals have had since campaign finance laws were changed five years ago.

Rudy & the enviros

As Earth Day dawns Sunday, Americans should consider the relationship between environmentalists and the former mayor of the capital of Earth. From New York’s City Hall, Rudolph W. Giuliani successfully confronted green zealots while advancing science and technology. Here again, Giuliani stands well right of where his detractors might expect.

Democrats court Sharpton

Democratic presidential contenders are scrambling for support in what’s being dubbed the Al Sharpton primary. The civil rights leader livened up the 2004 Democratic primary with his pompadour hairdo and sharp, witty oratory.

Gun control debate could heat up campaign

Gun control has been treated with a mix of silence and discomfort in the presidential campaign, a stance that may become insupportable once the nation finds its voice in the aftermath of the Virginia Tech mass murder.

Edwards plays up his country roots

Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards may come across as more Southern preppy than country, but this week he is playing up his small-town roots as he makes a major pitch to capture the rural vote.

Fred Thompson: Spoiler or savior?

Former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson’s Republican supporters see him as a potential dark-horse candidate poised to gallop in and represent the party’s more conservative wing in the 2008 presidential election.

Edwards claims he’s the strongest candidate

Presidential candidate John Edwards said Monday that he is the strongest general election candidate in the Democratic field because he’s won in the South and his chief rivals have not been tested there.