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McCain pads huge lead; Democratic race tight

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Feb. 6, 2008, 3:22PM

McCain pads huge lead; Democratic race tight


Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Sen. John McCain padded his lead in the race for Republican national convention delegates today, claiming far more than his three remaining rivals combined as he prodded conservative critics to cut him some slack.

In a fresh sign of ferment in the Democratic race, campaign officials disclosed that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton had loaned her campaign $5 million late last month, at a time when she was struggling to keep up with Sen. Barack Obama's television advertising in Super Tuesday states.

The delegate count was tight in the Democratic race, where Clinton held a relatively narrow lead of 98 over Obama in a struggle likely to reverberate through the spring.

McCain was easily outdistancing his GOP rivals, and hoping criticism from his own party would ease.

"I do hope that at some point we would just calm down a little bit and see if there's areas we can agree on," he said, one day in advance of an appearance before conservative activists who have shunned his candidacy.

Nearly complete delegate returns from coast-to-coast races on Super Tuesday left McCain with 703 delegates, nearly 60 percent of the 1,191 needed to win the nomination at the convention in St. Paul, Minn., this summer.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney had 269, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee 190 and Texas Rep. Ron Paul 14.

Despite the lengthening odds, Romney and Huckabee showed no clear signs they were ready to exit the race.

The Democratic delegate count lagged, the result of party rules that shunned the type of winner-take-all primaries that helped McCain build his advantage.

On Tuesday's busiest primary night in history, Clinton and Obama were separated by 40 delegates, with several hundred yet to be allocated.

Overall, that left Clinton with 1,000, and Obama with 902, neither of them even halfway to the 2,025 needed to secure the Democratic nomination.

With little time to rest, both pointed toward the next contests, primaries in Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia plus caucuses in Nebraska, Washington Maine and the Virgin Islands over the next week. In all, those states offer 353 delegates.

At a news conference in Chicago, Obama claimed victory on Super Tuesday, saying he had won more states than the former first lady for the day and would wind up with more delegates by the time all were tallied.

He bluntly took issue with the suggestion that he, more than she, could be brought down by Swift Boat-style criticism in the fall campaign.

"I have to just respond by saying that the Clinton research operation is about as good as anybody's out there," he said.

"I assure you that having engaged in a contest against them for the last year that they've pulled out all the stops. And you know I think what is absolutely true is whoever the Democratic nominee is the Republicans will go after them. The notion that somehow Senator Clinton is going to be immune from attack or there's not a whole dump truck they can't back up in a match between her and John McCain is just not true."

He said he would be campaigning in all the states in the next round of primaries and caucuses.

Clinton's plans were not yet public for the next contests, and senior aides conceded Obama would have more to spend on ads.

"We will have funds to compete," Mark Penn, Clinton's chief strategist, told reporters in a conference call. "But we're likely to be outspent again."

Asked whether Clinton and her husband, the former president, had decided to dip into their own wealth to finance their campaign, Penn said, "I'm not aware."

But a few hours later, Howard Wolfson, the campaign's communications director, said the senator had loaned money to her campaign late last month.

Officials with both campaigns have said Obama raised $32 million in January and that Clinton raised $13.5 million, a significant gap between the two that allowed Obama to place ads in virtually every Super Tuesday state and to get a head start on advertising in primaries and caucuses over the next week.

The delegate math was far different for the Republicans, and so, too, the race.

Inevitably, there was speculation among Republicans that Romney was contemplating a withdrawal. He offered little hint of his plans, announcing only that he would appear before conservatives and make a speech to Maryland Republicans on Thursday.

The wealthy former businessman has spent an estimated $40 million to $50 million in personal funds to finance his campaign, but he ran something of a scaled-back effort in several Super Tuesday states.

He emerged with a string of victories in caucuses, but won primaries only in his home state of Massachusetts and in Utah.

Huckabee scored a series of Southern victories on Super Tuesday and has said he will stay in the race until someone has enough delegates to clinch the nomination.

Interviewed on CBS, Huckabee sidestepped when asked whether he might be an irresistible vice presidential running mate on a ticket headed by McCain. "I still want to be the irresistible choice to be the president," he said.

McCain wasn't talking on that subject, but the vote totals and exit polls made it abundantly clear that he was weak where the former Arkansas governor was strong — in appealing to evangelical conservatives in the Bible Belt.

A Louisiana primary and caucuses in Kansas on Saturday offer an inviting target for Huckabee, who has demonstrated a strong appeal to social conservatives.

McCain didn't say so, but there is ample evidence he is pleased to have Huckabee in the race. In state after state, Huckabee has divided the anti-McCain vote with Romney, preventing the former Massachusetts governor from emerging as a more serious threat.

On Tuesday, McCain's delegates at the West Virginia convention swung over to support Huckabee at the last minute in a successful maneuver designed to deprive Romney of a victory.

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McCain was born on August 29, 1936, at the Coco Solo Air Base in the then-American-controlled Panama Canal Zone.

Take a look at this:


From the US State Department website at http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/86755.pdf


7 FAM 1116.1-4 Not Included in the Meaning of "In the United States"


(TL:CON-64; 11-30-95)


a. A U.S.-registered or documented ship on the high seas or in the exclusive economic zone is not considered to be part of the United States. A child born on such a vessel does not acquire U.S. citizenship by reason of the place of birth (Lam Mow v. Nagle, 24 F.2d 316 (9th Cir., 1928)).


b. A U.S.-registered aircraft outside U.S. airspace is not considered to be part of U.S. territory. A child born on such an aircraft outside U.S. airspace does not acquire U.S. citizenship by reason of the place of birth.


c. Despite widespread popular belief, U.S. military installations abroad and U.S. diplomatic or consular facilities are not part of the United States within the meaning of the 14th Amendment. A child born on the premises of such a facility is not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States and does not acquire U.S. citizenship by reason of birth.


No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President -- The Constitution of the United States, Article II Section 1

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Fidel talks about McCain-

makes some good points, sounds more like a rant than anything else though:


The Republican Candidate


Reflections by Fidel Castro (Part One)


These reflections are self-explanatory.


In that already famous Super Tuesday, a day of the

week when a number of States of the Union were

selecting the candidate of their choice for the

presidency of the United States from among a group

of contenders, one of the likely candidates to

replace George W. Bush was John McCain. Due to of

his pre-packaged hero image, and his alliance with

strong contenders such as Rudy Giuliani, the former

governor of the state of New York, other

candidates had already gladly endorsed him. The

intense propaganda of social, economic and political

factors having great significance in his country, and

his personal style had turned him into the

frontrunner. Only the extreme Republican right

represented by Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee, in

disagreement with some insignificant McCain

concessions, was still offering some resistance on

February 5th. Subsequently, Romney would also

withdraw in favor of McCain. Huckabee is still in the



On the other hand, the struggle for the Democratic

Party candidate is much tougher. Even though we

are dealing, as usual, with an active part of the

enfranchised population that tends to be a minority,

we are already hearing all kinds of opinions and

speculations about the consequences of the final

outcome of the electoral battle for the country and

the world, if mankind escapes the warmongering

adventures of Bush.


It is not up to me to talk about the history of a

candidate for the Presidency of the United States. I

have never done so, and perhaps I would never

have. Why should I be doing it at this time?


McCain has said that some of his comrades were

tortured by Cuban agents in Vietnam. His advocates

and publicity experts tend to emphasize that McCain

himself suffered such torture at the hands of the



I hope that the U.S. people will understand that I

consider it my obligation to enter into a detailed

analysis of this Republican candidate and to respond

to him. I shall do so on the basis of ethical



The McCain file shows that he was a prisoner of war

in Vietnam from October 26, 1967.


As he tells it himself, he was 31 years old at the time

and flying his 23rd bombing mission. His plane, an A-

4E Skyhawk was shot down over Hanoi by an anti-

aircraft missile. Because of the hit, he lost control

and ejected over Truc Bach Lake, in the middle of

the city, suffering fractures in both arms and one

knee. A patriotic crowd, seeing an aggressor come

down, gave him a hostile reception. McCain himself

says he was relieved at that moment to see the

arrival of an army squad.


The bombing of Vietnam, begun in 1965, shocked

international opinion, very sensitized to air attacks by

the superpower against a small third world country

which had been turned into a French colony,

thousands of miles away from distant Europe. The

Vietnamese people fought against Japanese

occupation forces during World War II and, when

that war ended, France once again took control. Ho

Chi Minh, the modest leader who was much loved by

all, and Nguyen Giap, his military commander, were

internationally admired figures. The famous French

Foreign Legion had been defeated. In trying to

avoid that, the aggressor powers were at the point

of using a nuclear weapon at Diên Biên Phu.


The noble "anamitas", as José Martí affectionately

called them, holders of millenary culture and values

were portrayed, to U.S. public opinion, as a

barbarian people unworthy of existence. In terms of

suspense and commercial advertising, nobody can

compete with the American specialists. The specialty

was used unrestrictedly in the case of the POWs,

and particularly in the case of McCain.


Going along with that, McCain later said that the fact

that his father was an Admiral and commanded the

U.S. forces in the Pacific led the Vietnamese

Resistance to offer him early liberation if he would

admit that he had committed war crimes; he

refused, arguing that the Military Code provides that

prisoners be liberated in the order they were

captured, and that [resulted in] five years of prison,

beatings and torture in a prison area the Americans

called the "Hanoi Hilton."


The final pull-out from Vietnam was disastrous. An

army which was half a million strong, trained and

armed to the teeth, could not hold back the thrust

of the Vietnamese patriots. Saigon, the colonial

capital, today called Ho Chi Minh City, was

embarrassingly abandoned by the occupation forces

and their accomplices, some of them holding to

helicopters. The United States lost more than 50

thousand of their precious sons and daughters, not

counting those that were wounded. They had

spent 500 billion dollars in that war without taxes,

always distasteful in their own right. Nixon unilaterally

revoked the commitments of Bretton Woods setting

the foundations of today's financial crisis. Their only

achievement was a Republican Presidential candidate

41 years later. [bretton Woods was the 1944 world

financial agreement among capitalist powers on the

brink of Washington's certain defeat of rival

imperialist powers (England, France, Germany, etc)

in World War #2. It established both gold-backing

for all currencies and the dollar as the central vehicle

for world commerce. In 1971 Nixon reneged on the

Washington's promise to back the dollar with gold,

collapsing the "gold standard," and leaving dollar

users with an entirely paper currency –

CubaSolidarity.com editor]


McCain, one of the many U.S. pilots shot down and

wounded in the declared, or undeclared, wars of

their country, was decorated with the Silver Star,

Legion of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze

Star Medal and the Purple Heart.


A TV movie based on his memoirs of the

experiences as a POW was broadcast on Memorial

Day of 2005 and he became famous for videos and

speeches on the subject.


The worst statement he made regarding our

country was that Cuban interrogators had been

regularly torturing American prisoners.


As a reaction to McCain's incredible words, I became

interested in the matter. I wanted to know where

such a strange legend had come from. I asked that

someone find information on the attribution. I was

informed that there was a highly promoted book

which was the basis for the movie. This was written

by McCain and Mark Salter, his Senate administrative

advisor, who continues to work and write with him.

I asked for it to be translated. This was done, as on

other occasions, very quickly by qualified staff. The

title of the book: Faith of My Fathers, 349 pages,

published in 1999.


His accusation against internationalist Cuban

revolutionaries --using the nickname Fidel to identify

one of them who was capable of "torturing a

prisoner to death"-- is totally lacking in any ethics.


Allow me to remind you, Mr. McCain: The

commandments of your religion forbid you from

lying. Your years in prison and the wounds you

received as a result of your attacks on Hanoi do not

excuse you from the moral duty of truth.


Some facts must be brought to your attention. In

Cuba, we had a rebellion against a despot who was

put into power by the United States on March 10,

1952, imposed on the Cuban people, when you

were just about to turn 16 years old, and the

Republican government of a celebrated soldier,

Dwight D. Eisenhower –who indeed was the first

one to speak of the industrial-military complex–

immediately recognized and supported that

government. I was a bit older than you; I would

have my 26 birthday that August (the same month

when you were born). Eisenhower had not yet

completed his presidential term that had begun in

the 1950's, some years after he became famous for

the allied landing in the north of France, with the

support of 10 thousand planes and the most

powerful naval force known up to that time.


It was a war, formally declared by the powers

fighting Hitler. The Nazis had launched a pre-emptive

attack, without warning and without any prior

declaration of war. A new style of producing great

slaughters was imposed on mankind.


In 1945, two bombs of roughly 20 kilotons each

were used against the civilian populations of

Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I once visited the first of

those cities.


In the 1950's, the government of the United States

came to build such nuclear attack weapons. One of

them, the MR17, came to weigh 19.05 tons and

measured 7.49 meters; it would be carried in their

bombers and would unleash an explosion of 20

megatons, equivalent to a thousand bombs like the

one that was dropped over the first of those two

cities on August 6, 1945. It is a fact that would

infuriate Einstein who, in the midst of his

contradictions, would often express regret about

the weapon that, without meaning to, he helped to

manufacture with his scientific theories and



When the Revolution triumphs in Cuba on January

1st, 1959, almost 15 years after the explosion of the

first nuclear weapons, and we proclaim an Agrarian

Reform Act based on the principle of national

sovereignty, consecrated by the blood of millions of

combatants who died in that [world] war, the

United States' response was a program of illegal

deeds and terrorist attacks against the Cuban

people, signed by the President of the United

States himself, Dwight D. Eisenhower.


The attack on the Bay of Pigs followed the exact

instructions of the President of the United States

and the invaders were escorted by U.S. naval units,

including an aircraft carrier. The first air assault with

U.S. B-26 planes flying out of secret bases was a

pre-emptive attack [by aircraft] using Cuban

markings on our planes so that world opinion would

see this as a revolt by our national air force.


You accuse Cuban revolutionaries of being torturers.

I seriously urge you to find a single one of the more

than a thousand prisoners captured during the Bay

of Pigs fighting who had been tortured. I was there,

not in some protected position at a distant general

command post. I personally captured a number of

prisoners with the help of some assistants; I walked

in front of armed squads who were still lying under

cover of the forest's vegetation, paralyzed by the

presence of the Chief of the Revolution. I'm sorry

that I have to mention this because it might appear

to be boasting, and that is something I honestly



The prisoners were citizens born in Cuba organized

by a powerful foreign power to fight against their

own people.


You have admitted that you are in favor of the

death penalty for very serious crimes. What would

have you done if faced by such acts? How many

would you have sentenced for that treason? In

Cuba, we tried several of the invaders who, under

Batista's orders, had previously committed

horrendous crimes against Cuban revolutionaries.


I visited the mass of Bay of Pigs prisoners, --that is

how you call the Girón Beach invasion-- on more

than one occasion, and I talked with them. I like to

find out man's motives. They showed surprise and

expressed their acknowledgement of the personal

respect with which they were treated.


You should know that while we were negotiating

their liberation in exchange for compensation by

food and medicines for children, the U.S.

government was organizing plans to assassinate me.

There is a record of this in what was written by

people taking part in the negotiation process.


I shall not go into detail about the long list of

hundreds of assassination attempts on me. None of

this is made up. It has been stated in official

documents circulated by the U.S. government.


What ethics underlie such deeds, vehemently

defended by you as a matter of principles?


I shall attempt to delve deeper into those matters.


Fidel Castro Ruz

February 10, 2008

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If anyone would like some more evidence that directly shows the hypocrisy of the way we(The United States of America) do things and why Ron Paul is necessary, read that letter.

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If anyone would like some more evidence that directly shows the hypocrisy of the way we(The United States of America) do things and why Ron Paul is necessary, read that letter.


The letter shows me more that Castro is necessary than Paul :p

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Is Fidel messing with U.S. elections to get the republican front-runner into the eye of scrutiny? I think so. Intentional? Why not. Do I like? I like..

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