ABCNEWS' Deborah Apton was on the trail with retired Gen. Wesley Clark during his run for president. For the latest report, scroll down.
Stop and Shop
CONCORD, N.H., Jan. 8— Members of the press exchanged quizzical looks when Gen. Clark walked into a crowded room for a "Conversations with Clark" on Wednesday afternoon wearing a gray, green, maroon, cream -- well, multicolored, argyle sweater.
And for those traveling with the campaign, what made it worse was knowing that Clark borrowed the sweater from his brother-in-law, Gene. So it was no surprise when the Clark campaign made an OTS stop as they call it (Off-The-Schedule), to the L.L. Bean factory store to get The General a new sweater.
Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor also came along for the last-minute stop focused solely on getting a wool sweater for Clark and a winter coat for his body man, Amad.
After a day of teasing for the argyle sweater from both press and staff, Clark tried to explain the "look." "I took the sweater off the back of my brother-in-law," Clark said as he searched for the men's sweater section, "I was cold."
Besides some retail politics (Clark extensively questioned one couple about "where to ski" in New Hampshire, and gave a lesson in baby kissing to one mother who carried her nine-month-old son), Clark seemed to be at the stop to model for the dozen or so press. And, as he so often does, Clark seemed to want to befriend the press, asking them their advice on size, color, and even offering to buy his hometown reporter from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette a sweater to keep him warm on the trail.
At one point, Clark showed his lack of expertise in shopping at a factory store when he held up a sweater and, while examining the price tag, asked, "Why is this so cheap? Cause nobody wants it?"
After holding sweaters up to his chest, Clark finally chose one -- according to Clark, forest green is his color -- but it was a "Tall/Large" size, seemingly too big for the 5'10" General. After a member of the press told him he should try some on, Clark hesitantly walked into the fitting room.
Two sweaters later, Clark walked the catwalk out of the dressing room wearing the sweater he'd wear out of the store announcing, "I get two thumbs up. This is a large. It feels good."
You take the good. You take the Bad.
PETERBOROUGH, N.H., Jan. 7— It was a good day in New Hampshire for Gen. Wesley Clark, who found himself smack dab in the middle of the spotlight following the publication of the USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll. As the crowds built and the traveling press core doubled, Clark was smiling, joking with reporters late Wednesday night that the campaign may have to get a press bus instead of the two minivans they are now using.
But with the good, comes the bad. In addition to attacks from Edwards and Dean, Clark is taking the brunt of opposition from the Dean campaign. On Wednesday afternoon, two Dean volunteers stood in the frigid cold outside of a Peterborough "Conversations with Clark" handing out a two-sided opposition paper on Clark. On one side it read "WESLEY CLARK: PRO-WAR" -- the other side, "WESLEY CLARK: REAL DEMOCRAT?" And then, in a box at the bottom, it was printed: Paid For by Dean For America.