WaPo‘s Dan Balz says Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are clearing the Democratic field. But in the last paragraph he mentions that John Edwards is leading in the Iowa polls — sort of a buried lede. According to Balz, Edwards is making his official annoucement in the next week, “the timing dictated in part by his advisers’ belief that he will get more attention during an otherwise slow news week than he might in January, when the new Congress begins and President Bush unveils his new Iraq strategy.”
In the New York Observer, Jason Horowitz checks in with Edwards as he schmoozes donors in Manhattan:
Mr. Edwards feels that he’ll be able to take advantage of his existing network of contributors to find the resources he’ll need to mount a serious bid. “This is an area I don’t have to guess about,” he said. “I have both a track record and a wide and deep support network nationwide, including New York, that I’m still very close to. If I decide to run, I know I will be able to raise the money to run a serious campaign.”
But he is starting this time around at a pronounced disadvantage. According to the Federal Election Commission Web site, Mr. Edwards’ One America Committee P.A.C. had $20,611 on hand as of the end of November. As of September, Mr. Edwards’ 2004 Presidential campaign was still more than $300,000 in debt.
And with high-profile rivals like Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama to contend with, the former Senator is likely to find that resources are considerably more difficult to come by this time around, even in the country’s most donor-rich precincts.
“He wasn’t running against a New York Senator last time. It creates a precarious situation for any fund-raiser to go against their own Senator, especially when she is the front-runner,” said one New York fund-raiser sympathetic to Mr. Edwards. “Giving to Hillary is a win-win: She is either going to be the nominee, or she is going to be the New York Senator for as long as she wants to be.”
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