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  Ex-Bush Spokesman: President Used 'Propaganda' To Push WarMay 27, 2008 22:06 The spokesman who defended President Bush's policies through Hurricane Katrina and the early years of the Iraq war is now blasting his former employers, saying the Bush administration became mired in propaganda and political spin and at times played loose with the truth.

In excerpts from a 341-page book to be released Monday, Scott McClellan writes on Iraq that Bush "and his advisers confused the propaganda campaign with the high level of candor and honesty so fundamentally needed to build and then sustain public support during a time of war."

"[I]n this regard, he was terribly ill-served by his top advisers, especially those involved directly in national security," McClellan wrote.

McClellan also sharply criticizes the administration on its handling of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.

"One of the worst disasters in our nation's history became one of the biggest disasters in Bush's presidency," he wrote. "Katrina and the botched federal response to it would largely come to define Bush's second term."

Bush spokeswoman Dana Perino said the White House would not comment Tuesday because they haven't seen the book.

Frances Townsend, former Homeland Security adviser to Bush, said advisers to the president should speak up when they have policy concerns.

"Scott never did that on any of these issues as best I can remember or as best as I know from any of my White House colleagues," said Townsend, now a CNN contributor. "For him to do this now strikes me as self-serving, disingenuous and unprofessional."

Fox News contributor and former White House adviser Karl Rove said on that network Tuesday that the excerpts from the book he's read sound more like they were written by a "left-wing blogger" than his former colleague.

 
  Clinton Win Leads To Obama BoostMay 15, 2008 09:04 Hillary Clinton's decisive win in West Virginia caused John Edwards to throw his support to Barack Obama, the Illinois senator's aides said.

Edwards was concerned that the Clinton storyline -- that Obama can't win white, working-class voters -- was becoming too damaging to Obama and the party, aides said.

Obama had been courting Edwards for four months. Since Edwards abandoned his presidential bid in January, he and Obama have talked regularly, Obama said.

As late as Monday, Edwards told CNN's Larry King that he wasn't prepared to make an endorsement.

"What I don't want to do is contribute to the divide," he said. "At least for this moment, I think the reasonable thing for me to do is let voters make their decision."

But Clinton's crushing win in West Virginia on Tuesday highlighted Obama's weakness with working-class white voters, a segment of the electorate that may prove pivotal in November.

Among white voters without a college degree, Clinton defeated Obama by 50 percentage points. Among white voters making less than $30,000 a year, Clinton's margin of victory was more than 60 percentage points.
  Democrats Win Again In A Republican StrongholdMay 13, 2008 22:21 Forget West Virginia. The race pros in both parties were watching tonight was a special House election in Mississippi -- and the results could not be worse for the GOP.

For the third time during the last few months, a Democrat triumphed in a House district that long had been solidly Republican.

In this case -- Mississippi's 1st congressional district -- Travis Childers bucked last-minute intervention by Vice President Dick Cheney to win a seat that the GOP had held, easily, since 1994.

Cheney personally stumped on behalf of the Republican candidate, Greg Davis, on Monday. Davis and his allies also sought, in television ads, to undercut Childers by tying him to Barack Obama. But with most of the vote counted, Childers led, 52% to 48%, and was declared the victor.

Earlier this month, a Democrat won a Louisiana House seat that had been occupied by Republicans for more than 30 years. And in early March, in an especially sweet win for the Democrats, they took over the district that former House Speaker Dennis Hastert had represented since the mid-1980s.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi quickly trumpeted the outcome in Mississippi (where 3 out of 4 House districts are now in Democratic hands). In a release, she said: "For the third time this year, Democrats have turned a red seat to blue, proving that Americans across our country want real solutions and reject Republicans' misleading and negative attacks. For the first time in more than 30 years, Democrats have won three special elections in Republican seats in one cycle."

She added: "I look forward to welcoming Congressman-elect Childers and his family to the Capitol and to swearing" him in.
  Poll: More Disapprove Of Bush Than Any Other President - Cnn.ComMay 01, 2008 22:36 A new poll suggests that President Bush is the most unpopular president in modern American history.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released Thursday indicates that 71 percent of the American public disapprove of how Bush is handling his job as president.

"No president has ever had a higher disapproval rating in any CNN or Gallup Poll; in fact, this is the first time that any president's disapproval rating has cracked the 70 percent mark," said Keating Holland, CNN's polling director.

"Bush's approval rating, which stands at 28 percent in our new poll, remains better than the all-time lows set by Harry Truman and Richard Nixon [22 percent and 24 percent, respectively], but even those two presidents never got a disapproval rating in the 70s," Holland said. "The previous all-time record in CNN or Gallup polling was set by Truman, 67 percent disapproval in January 1952."

While Gallup polling goes back to the 1930s, it wasn't until the Truman years that they began surveying monthly approval ratings.

CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider adds, "He is more unpopular than Richard Nixon was just before he resigned from the presidency in August 1974."