Entries in Presidential Run (7)


Hillary Clinton Close to Paying Off 2008 Campaign Debt

SAUL LOEB/AFP/GettyImages(WASHINGTON) -- Hillary Clinton, who has steadily chipped away at the more than $25 million in debt her campaign amassed during her run for president, owes only $100,000, according to Federal Election Commission disclosures for the second quarter of 2012.

Running for president is expensive, and although the subject of campaign debt has usually been synonymous with Newt Gingrich in the past several months, Clinton is among the many former presidential candidates who’ve departed the trail in debt.

She suspended her campaign in June 2008 owing $25 million, but had paid off enough by the end of that year to owe $5.9 million.

Almost four years later, the campaign owes $100,000 to one entity, the firm of Penn, Schoen & Berland for consulting and polling fees.  Penn, Schoen & Berland is a market research firm headed up by a trio of longtime advisers to both Bill and Hillary Clinton: Mark Penn, Doug Schoen and Michael Berland.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Chris Christie to Endorse Mitt Romney for President

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(HANOVER, N.H.) -- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will endorse former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney for president at an event in Hanover, N.H., Tuesday afternoon, ABC News has learned.

Christie just last week announced that he would not seek the office himself.

Romney, who is the Republican frontrunner, will appear Tuesday night at a Bloomberg/Washington Post debate on the economy with other Republican candidates for president.  The debate will take place at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


'Zero Chance' Donald Trump Could Win Presidency, Obama Advisor Says

Mike Stobe/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Senior Advisor to the President David Plouffe says that Donald Trump has no chance of making it to the White House. Plouffe, who managed President Obama's successful 2008 campaign, said Sunday that any Trump presidential run would be a losing affair.

"I think I saw Donald Trump kind of rising in some polls and given his behavior and spectacle the last couple of weeks, I hope he keeps on rising because there is zero chance that Donald Trump would ever be hired by the American people to do this job," Plouffe said in an interview with ABC’s This Week.

Plouffe addressed the accusation this week by Trump that President Obama was not born in the United States.

"There may be a small part of the country that believes these things, but mainstream Americans think it's a sideshow," Plouffe said.

Earlier this week on a morning television program, Trump said "Three weeks ago when I started I thought he was probably born in this country, and now I really have a much bigger doubt than I did before." He told the host, "You are not allowed to be a president if you're not born in this country. [Obama] may not have been born in this country, and I'll tell you what. Three weeks ago I thought he was born in this country. Right now I have some real doubts. I have people that actually have been studying it and they cannot believe what they're finding."

Trump, a real estate developer and reality show host, has said that he is mulling a run for president and that he will decide whether to make it official sometime before June.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Trump Adviser Pushes Back Against Allegations of Election Law Violations

Mike Stobe/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- An employee of real estate mogul Donald Trump denied on Monday that he did anything improper by using a private jet to travel to Iowa earlier this month to meet with political operatives and activists to discuss the possibility of a Trump presidential run.

Michael Cohen, an executive vice president at the Trump Organization, pushed back against criticism that the use of the jet, owned by Trump, violated election laws -- an allegation that has been raised in media accounts as well as in an official complaint filed recently with the Federal Election Commission.

“Numerous press articles have been circulated questioning the alleged violation of FEC rules/regs stemming from my usage of one of Mr. Trump’s aircrafts used on my trip to Iowa,” Cohen said in a statement to ABC News. “For the record, which I hope will be the last I hear of this nonsense, no FEC rules/regs have been violated as my trip was not for Mr. Trump but as the co-creator of”

Cohen started the website, an effort to draft Trump for a presidential race, along with Trump supporter and friend Stewart Rahr. Cohen said in an interview that he and Rahr paid for the trip to Iowa out of their own pockets.

On Monday a Ron Paul supporter Shawn Michael Thompson filed an official complaint with the FEC asserting that Cohen had violated regulations by using the personal jet, according to a report in the Daily Beast.

However, some campaign finance experts say that because Trump has not yet announced a candidacy and has not formed an exploratory committee, the complaint is unlikely to go anywhere.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Gingrich Downplays Announcement As The Wait For 2012 Continues

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Just hours after word leaked out that Newt Gingrich would cement his place as the first major Republican candidate to take a step toward the 2012 presidential race, his top spokesman was already seeking to tamp down speculation about just how official of a roll-out the former House Speaker was planning.

Gingrich is scheduled to be in Atlanta on Thursday for a press conference with Georgia’s GOP Gov. Nathan Deal at which he was expected to officially announce a presidential exploratory committee. Not so fast, Gingrich's spokesman Rick Tyler said in a statement that landed in reporters' inboxes Tuesday night titled: "Clarification."

"While Speaker Gingrich is in Georgia on Thursday, he will NOT announce the formation of an exploratory committee," Tyler said in the message.

A source close to Gingrich told ABC’s Jonathan Karl that, for legal reasons, Gingrich is prepared to announce something called "an explore phase" that will allow him to prepare for a presidential run.  This "explore phase," the source says, is legally different from an official exploratory committee.

But Gingrich adviser Joe Gaylord, who for two decades has been Gingrich's closest political hand, had already disclosed to the Des Moines Register that the formation of a presidential exploratory committee was in the offing during the Atlanta trip.

"It's exactly that, an exploratory committee," Gaylord told the Register's Tom Beaumont. (Tyler called it that "a significantly inaccurate statement.")

The roll-out strategy seems like a head-scratcher even to long-time political observers. And the Gingrich team's conflicting public -- and private -- comments about the former House Speaker's intentions underlies the fundamental paradox of this election for Republicans: is the nomination really worth it?

Another potential candidate, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, has candidly noted the difficulty of beating an incumbent president and the steep challenge (fundraising, in particular) of running in 2012. The forecasts for the economy and job growth are improving, albeit sluggishly -- unemployment remains high nationwide. And after the palpable anger at Democrats and the Washington political establishment boosted Republicans to historic victories in the November elections, it could be a challenge for the GOP to keep that level of voter enthusiasm high.

Moreover, Gingrich has to unravel a very complicated -- and lucrative -- business empire to pursue the nomination. As Gaylord also noted in the Des Moines Register interview, during the "explore phase," Gingrich will be asking one fundamental question: "Is it really feasible for me to do this? And let me check this out in the next six or seven weeks, because I want to find out if it's real before I do it."

Even so, most GOP insiders still fully expect Gingrich to ultimately make the leap. And Register political columnist, Kathie Obradovich, praised the timing of Gingrich's decision to start exploring a run first, writing that "he'll be in a position to snap up some Iowa operatives."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


ABC News Exclusive: President Michele Bachmann? 

Photo Courtesy - Bachmann dot House dot gov(WASHINGTON) -- Forget the fervent chatter speculating that Tea Party favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann is considering launching a campaign to challenge Sen. Amy Klobuchar for U.S. Senate in the next national election cycle. Think bigger.
ABC News has learned that Bachmann, R-Minnesota, is also seriously weighing whether to seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012.
A source close to the three-term congresswoman says Bachmann will travel to Iowa later this month for multiple meetings to seek advice from political forces there and party elders close to the caucus process before coming to a final decision regarding a potential presidential run.
Bachmann, a native of Waterloo, Iowa, is also set to deliver a keynote speech at an Iowans for Tax Relief PAC fundraiser Jan. 21 in Des Moines, Iowa. According to an invitation to the fundraiser obtained by ABC News, tickets cost $25 per person or $40 per couple, and donors are able enhance their standing by coughing up $1,000 to become an honorary “host” or by donating $250 to become a “watchdog.” Proceeds from the fundraiser will go to the Iowans for Tax Relief PAC, a political action committee working to elect pro-taxpayer Iowa legislators.
Bachmann’s appearance in the Hawkeye state later this month will be her third trip over the past eight months to the significant early-caucus state, and last week she was featured at another GOP fundraiser in Michigan -- also an early primary state.
Although aides in Bachmann’s congressional office say she has received frequent encouragement from supporters to challenge President Obama next year, they will not confirm that she is officially throwing her hat in the ring just quite yet. But Bachmann’s senior staff does admit that the Minnesota-native is not ruling out a presidential campaign.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Sarah Palin Says She Could Beat Obama in Presidential Race

Photo Courtesy - ABC News (NEW YORK) -- Sarah Palin says she is seriously considering a run for the White House, and she believes she could beat President Obama in 2012, the former Alaska governor told ABC News' Barbara Walters.

"I'm looking at the lay of the land now, and...trying to figure that out, if it's a good thing for the country, for the discourse, for my family, if it's a good thing," Palin said in an interview scheduled to air in its entirety Dec. 9 on ABC as part of Walters' 10 Most Fascinating People of 2010.

Although Palin remains undecided about whether to run, the 2008 vice presidential nominee has now made clear in two interviews this week that she is seriously considering it.

In a profile to be published in the upcoming New York Times Magazine, Palin told reporter Robert Draper "I am," when asked if she was weighing a 2012 run. "I'm engaged in the internal deliberations candidly, and having that discussion with my family, because my family is the most important consideration here."

Palin said her decision would involve "evaluating whether she could bring unique qualities to the table," admitting the biggest challenge would be proving her record.

"I know that a hurdle I would have to cross, that some other potential candidates wouldn't have to cross right out of the chute, is proving my record," the former Alaska governor told Draper. "That's the most frustrating thing for me -- the warped and perverted description of my record and what I've accomplished over the last two decades."

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio