"He's not going to be invisible. He's not going to be holed up in Chappaqua this whole campaign, by any means. Number one -- he's going to be the chief surrogate for Sen. Clinton out on the campaign trail. . . Number two -- he's going to be the chief strategist in the campaign. But they caution that he is going to try -- at least -- to give that counsel to Sen. Clinton privately in their living room not burning up the phones talking to everyone else in the campaign. Number three -- he can play chief fixer in the campaign."
Stephanopoulos also explored Sen. Clinton's vulnerabilities: "This issue of caution and calculation is something [Clinton campaign strategists] are thinking about a lot. And they know that in these sittings she is going to have to appear more candid, have to be also more bold on the policy side. That's why I think you can expect that over the course of the campaign she will come out with a much bigger health care plan despite the failures in the past. The other big vulnerabilities -- the war in Iraq. She voted for the war going in. Clinton officials know that Barack Obama will be able to say that he was against the war from the start. Number three -- the idea that she is the ultimate insider. . . [The Clinton people] want to grab the good of the Clinton years of the president's reputation, but they want to avoid the idea that she is part of the past, that she has already been there and done that, and that's going to be tough for her."
2008: Democrats: Clinton: opting out:
Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) will "not take matching funds in the primary campaign or, if she wins the Democratic nomination, in the general election," reports the Los Angeles Times' Dan Morain based on an e-mail exchange with senior Clinton advisor Howard Wolfson.
In 2004, both President Bush and Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) opted out of the matching-funds system for the nomination season. But in every campaign since 1976, the nominees have accepted matching funds for the general election.
In 2004, the FEC gave $75 million each to Kerry and Bush. With an inflation adjustment, the grant is expected to be $83.8 million in 2008.
Top-tier contenders on both sides of the aisle are expected to follow Clinton's lead and abandon the system this cycle in both the primaries and the general.
A tangible sign that Clinton was going to forego matching funds can be viewed on her web site where she asks for contributions as high as $4,200 ($2,100 for the primary and another $2,100 for the general). Candidates who take public money in the general election are restricted to that amount and are not allowed to raise additional money. LINK
2008: Democrats: Clinton's first campaign stop:
Pat Healy of the New York Times writes up the "highly scripted political theater" that was Sen. Clinton's first stop on the campaign trail. The Senator promoted her plan to expand the opportunity for children under the age of 18 to acquire health insurance and included children on stage with her which, Healy writes, was reminiscent of Speaker Pelosi's carefully crafted ascension to power earlier this month. LINK
"Clinton began the day by going to church in Manhattan with her former-president husband, sources said. She ended it in her Chappaqua home, where she was to hold a major fund-raising phone call with hundreds of potential supporters and" McAuliffe, writes Maggie Haberman of the New York Post. LINK