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Presidency 2008

For the first time since 1928, both major parties will have open contests for the Presidential nomination without a sitting President or Vice President in the running. Politics1 presents a "first look" at those people being mentioned as possible, likely, speculative, or draft candidates for President in 2008.


DEMOCRATS - THE MAJOR CANDIDATES:

Hillary Clinton US Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (New York)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Clinton.


Barack Obama US Senator Barack Obama (Illinois)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Obama.


OTHER DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES:

Roland Aranjo Roland Aranjo (California)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Self-published author Roland Aranjo is concerned with the state of democracy in the US. He even wrote a book on the topic -- Democracy, Declaring Our Power: How the Law of Attraction Applies to Society and Democracy -- which Aranjo says "traces the 2,500 year history of democracy from the city state of Athens Greece to the shores of America and throughout the world." Here is how it translates into a campaign platform: "American democracy has been corrupted by powerful special interests. Through applying the law of attraction, citizens have the power to revive democracy ... In our democracy revival campaign we will create an online Citizen’s E-Legislature, where all citizens will be able to vote on the important issues impacting our nation." Related link: Aranjo for President.


Warren R. Ashe (Virginia)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Warren Ashe, who previously was a candidate for President in 2000 and 2004 (but failed to compete in any primaries), filed FEC paperwork to make a third run in 2008. From the information he filed with Project Vote Smart in 2004, Mr. Ashe is one of the more eccentric candidates in the race. Ashe claimed he holds a doctorate degree from North Carolina State University. Then again, Ashe also claims to have been "President, United Nations, 1973-2003 ... Appointed President, United States White House, 1981-2003 ... Candidate, United States President, 2000 ... Vice President, West Wing - Carter Administration, 1977-1981 ... [and] Vice President, West Wing - Ford Administration, 1973-1977." He also claims to be a Navy veteran, an Army veteran AND an Air Force veteran. And he writes he owns a $40 million corporation, too. Yeah, right. Here's a choice quote: "I am involved with time travel communications that are real. And capable of time travel contact throughout history itself. I also build flying saucers that are capable of going to another solar system at high warp speed. The time travel transmissions have communicated at least and no less than 500 years into the future. I have used my saucers built by hand at Edgecombe Community College in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. That has already since 1983 taken sperm and DNA into the future. Into the 22nd, 23rd, and 24th centuries. The methods I used are through flux capacitation and wormhole technology." Related link: SETI: President Warren R. Ashe.


Christina Billings-Elias Christina Gerasimos Billings-Elias (California)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. This candidate bills herself as "Princess Christina Gerasimos Billings-Elias" because she claims her great uncle is a "decendant of Queen Victoria." As to being a Princess, it appears to be a title she bestowed upon herself. To give you an idea of just how self-aggrandizing and bizarre this candidate is, here's an excerpt from her campaign site: "Christina born to be President of 'Our America.' ©™. 'The Chosen One," ©™ as proclaimed by Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, friends of Theodore and Evelyn Gerasimos, first Greek in Detroit 1890. People's King of the Greeks emanating from Spartan Royalty Warriors." I also don't get the weird official campaign pic. Related link: Christina Billings-Elias for President.


Robert E. "Bob" Boyer (Illinois)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the fact that Bob Boyer lost a 2002 primary run for Jackson County Sheriff, lost a 2004 primary run for Jackson County Clerk of the Circuit Court (3rd place - 4%) and filed paperwork with the FEC to run for President, no other info is known about this 2008 Democratic hopeful. No website yet.


Willie Carter Willie F. Carter (Texas)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Willie Carter -- who previously ran for President five times -- is an Air Force veteran, former aircraft mechanic, union member, businessman, and Pentecostal church deacon. He's also a father of nine children. His political experience seems limited to his one-time membership in the Gardena Valley Democratic Club of Southern California. In 2000, Carter captured 30 votes (17th place) in the New Hampshire Democratic primary. In 2004, Carter again appeared on the New Hampshire primary ballot (11th place - 86 votes). Carter's message is a blended theocratic/political one. "We must not forget the sacrifices made by our founders, and their belief in God our Creator, contained in many of their writings. I too share their belief, and that God governs in the affairs of men. Preserving freedom demand's diligence, patriotism, and according to our Founding fathers, a firm reliance upon Divine Protection. If I am elected President, I will take the God-fearing approach, addressing the needs of all the people of our nation, the homeless, jobless, the elderly, the business community, moving forward to reduce our national debt, and dependency on foreign resources, fair international trade, maintaining a strong military, strong foreign diplomacy, and stopping the cycle of violence across our nation," explains Carter. His typical campaign style is to drive around the nation by van, meeting with voters in churches and other places. Related link: Willie Carter for President.


Randy Crow Randolph W. "Randy" Crow (North Carolina)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Randy Crow -- a small businessman and former realtor -- was an unsuccessful candidate for the Wilmington City Council in 1997. Then he ran for Congress in the 1998 primary (losing by a vote of 94% to 6%) ... then he ran for President in the 2000 primaries (he got on the ballot in New Hampshire and Louisiana) ... then he ran another losing primary for Congress later in 2000 (losing by a 93% to 7% vote) .. then he lost for Council again ... then he finished last place (9th - 1%) in the 2002 US Senate primary ... and then he ran for President again in 2004. Crow was on the 2004 primary ballot in New Hampshire (15th place - 60 votes) and Texas (10th place - 0.8% - 6,319 votes). He withdrew from the Presidential race in March 2004 -- ran another race for County Commissioner -- then announced he will run for President again in 2008. In an email to Politics1 in 2000, Crow explained his motives: "I am involved in politics to get rid of filthy communists and lots of others." He also believes the FBI blew up TWA Flight 800 with a laser and was likely involved in crashing Missouri Governor Mel Carnahan's 2000 campaign plane. On his website, Crow repeatedly expresses open hatred towards Jews (Example: "Vietnam was a zioni$t manipulated War designed to kill our Christian kids and install na$i communi$t zioni$m in the Vietnam region"). Most of the contents of Crow's site, however, appear to be rambling conspiracy tirades against various envisioned enemies: "It has been 13 years since the FBI fessed up to the fact they were investigating me. All my files are classified ... In 1994 the Federal Force manipulated a bunch of mess which questioned my sanity ... I think the Force had some weird blood work done on me or possibly put a computer chip in me." Crow was upset that we quoted these various passages from his '04 site so he subsequently printed an amusing screed denouncing Politics1 as a "zioni$t" tool out to destroy him (he even attacked us for referring to him above as -- gasp -- a "former realtor" because, he notes, he only dabbled in real estate in the past). Oh, we forget to mention that Crow has a "hunch ... [I] may be The Returning Christ ... I do believe firmly that in a way whether or not I am The Returning Christ is a non event and do not worry about it at all, except I do pray that if I am The Returning Christ I would like to be the coolest, greatest, most fantastic Returning Christ in the history of the Universes." By 2005, he pretty much answered his own question by releasing an Easter Message from the Returning Christ. Yup, you can read that and lots, LOTS more writings like this on his official website: Randy Crow - Democrat for President.


Laura Davis-Aaron (Tennesse)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the fact that contractor Laura Davis-Aaron filed paperwork with the FEC to run for President, little else is known about this 2008 Democratic hopeful. She lost a 2005 special election primary for an open State Senate seat (9th place - 1%), then filed for an open Congressional seat in 2006 but quit well before the primary. No website yet.


Phil Epstein (California)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the fact that Phil Epstein filed paperwork with the FEC to run for President, no other info is known about this 2008 Democratic hopeful. No website yet.


Michael Forrester Michael K. Forrester (Colorado)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the facts that Michael Forrester has filed FEC paperwork to run for President in 2008 and has launched a campaign website, we cannot tell you much about this candidate. The website is filled with lots of photos of the candidate but the bio section is without any info. His platform is also rather sparse: repeal the "No Child Left Behind" law, raise the minimum wage, and guarantee health care for all Americans. Related link: Michael Forrester for President.


Wrendo Godwin Wrendo J.P. Godwin (Virginia)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the fact that Wrendo "JP" Godwin filed paperwork with the FEC to run for President, no other info is known about this 2008 Democratic hopeful. His website is merely a placeholder. Website: Godwin2008.com.


Al Hamburg Albert "Big Al" Hamburg (Wyoming)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Perennial candidate Al Hamburg, 76, has to date lost 17 consecutive bids for President and for Governor, US Senate and Congress. He proudly described himself in 2004 as the "Very Independent UNPOPULAR Candidate" -- unpopular, he explains, because the special interests and bureaucrats hate him (well, that ... and maybe also because of the Nazi helmet he wore in his 2004 campaign photo). "I make more people mad than I make want to vote for me," he added. A house painter by trade, Hamburg spent nearly twenty years in the Army -- serving in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. He has run for state office repeatedly -- at various times -- as a Democrat, an Independent, and as a member of the now-defunct New Alliance Party. Hamburg also made news in the 1980s when he sued a woman for breach of contract involving a car he sold to her. In the lawsuit, he said the woman agreed to have sex with him fifty times in exchange for the car -- but that she stopped performing her end of the deal after 33 times. Claiming to be a homeless veteran, Hamburg suddenly popped-up in Nebraska in 2000 -- declaring the state as his new residency -- and filed as a candidate there for US Senator in the Democratic primary. Hamburg then quickly moved back to Wyoming and has run for office again there several times since then. No website yet.


Alfonzo Jones (California)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Except for the fact that Alfonzo Jones filed paperwork with the FEC to run for President -- just as he did in 1996, 2000 and 2004 -- no other info was known about this 2008 Democratic hopeful. No website yet.


John Joseph Kennedy John Joseph Kennedy (Georgia)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. John Joseph Kennedy was a registered write-in candidate for President in 2004 in Georgia, Indiana and Texas. On his campaign website, he describes himself as "an outstanding community leader, humanitarian, champion of children's rights, environmentalist, motivational speaker, entrepreneur and a man of extraordinary vision." Kennedy is a freelance writer, marketing executive and former model. He explains his motives for running on his campaign site: "I have now been called to serve God and my country as the TRUE DEMOCRAT CANDIDATE for the Presidency, to right the wrongs of America!" Kennedy sees the 9/11 attacks as an "inside job" directed by the Bush Administration as a pretext for launching the war on terrorism ("It's an inside job! At the highest level on down, I will see that those who are really responsible for the insidious acts of terrorism in our country, and around the world, be prosecuted to the fullest extent of all domestic and international laws."). In 2004, Kennedy went so far as to blame Bush policies for hurricanes and other natural disasters. "I will stop the Bush family's manipulation of the elements of nature (hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, earthquakes) which have wrecked insurmountable havoc on our environment and disturbed the natural-flow of all life on this planet. They (especially Bush Sr.) have done this for personal, political and financial gain and greed," explained Kennedy. Related link: John Joseph Kennedy for President.


Karl Krueger Karl E. Krueger (South Dakota)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Long haul truckdriver and Vietnam War veteran Karl Krueger is running for President on a platform of promoting energy independence for the US. "I intend to put this nation on a course to be energy independent within 10 years of my election. After all, John Kennedy took us to the moon and back in 10 years with technology that didn’t exist when he began, it should not be too difficult for us to become energy independent in the same amount of time using technology that we already have," he explained. Krueger was previously a Democratic nominee for Congress in Wisconsin against a GOP incumbent in 1988. Related link: Karl Krueger for President.


Dal LaMagna Dal A. "Tweezerman" LaMagna (Washington)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Wealthy businessman Dal LaMagna acquired his "Tweezerman" nickname because it was also the name of the tweezer-manufacturing company he founded and ran from 1980-2004. LaMagna sold his Tweezerman company to a European corporation for millions of dollars in 2004 -- but notes all of his "employees kept their jobs and shared $10 million dollars in capital gains because each one was a shareholder in the company" when he sold it. LaMagna was also a Democratic/Green fusion candidate for Congress in New York in 1996 and 2000, before moving to Washington State in 2005. Well educated, LaMagna earned both his MBA (1971) and his Master's degree in Public Administration (2002) from Harvard. On the issues, LaMagna is a progressive activist concentrating his campaign on the issue of developing "a sensible plan for withdrawal from Iraq." On a related note, LaMagna was an executive producer of three feature -length Iraq War documentaries: The Ground Truth, The War Tapes, and Iraq For Sale. He is also the founder of the Progressive Government Institute, a liberal think-tank. Website: Dal LaMagna for President.


Frank Lynch R. Frank Lynch (Florida)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. "My campaign has so much more credibility than most of the people you have listed as other democratic candidates," emailed Frank Lynch to Politics1. With amusingly grandiose narcissism, Lynch touts himself as "The New Ideological Leader of the Democratic Party: Presidential Candidate, Futurist, Educator, Philanthropist, Author, and Publisher." In fact, let's let Lynch describe himself some more: Lynch is "a lifelong Republican who converted to become the new ideological leader of the Democratic Party and the most exciting and important Democratic Candidate for President, leading a grassroots revolution for energy independence, free healthcare, free daycare, free college, healing the planet, anti-globalization and abolishing the income tax!" And -- just in case you haven't yet gotten the idea that this guy loves himself -- Frank wants to tell you about his other really, realy important projects: Frank Lynch University™ ("Frank Lynch, Chancellor and President" ... currently in the "developmental stage"), the Frank Lynch Foundation™ ("for Abused Children and Abused Women & America's Forgotten Poor"), FranksHeroes™ ("Where people peacefully but firmly re-take control of the nation"), Frankskids™ ("Frank Lynch proposes to construct a nationwide system of Frank's Children's Villages"), and Hot4Frank.com ("Submit links to your own Videos, Songs and Pics about Frank Lynch"). Keep in mind that "Frank Lynch University ™, FLUNI ™ and Frankskids™ are Trademarks of Frank Lynch University™ Inc. Franksheros™. Franksheroes™ and Frank Lynch USA™ are Trademarks of Frank Lynch USA™ LLC." Perhaps, if he wins, he'll rename the United States into "Frank Lynch USA™". Lynch has already qualified for some primary ballots, and vows that he will appear on "every" Presidential primary ballot in the nation. More websites: FrankLynch.org (Presidential campaign site), Frank Lynch Blog, and FrankLynch.name (biography site).


Lee Mercer Lee L. Mercer Jr. (Texas)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Lee Mercer Jr. is a two-time veteran with an "unusual" story to tell. He first served in Navy during the Vietnam War, leaving the service in 1972. After working as a dental assistant, he earned his BS degree in business at Texas Southern University and then became a mortgage broker. Then he rejoined the military, entering the Texas National Guard in 1989 and served in the first Gulf War (which he calls "the Saudi Arabia War"). Then his story became bizarre. He states: "On August 22, 1992, The State of Texas installed an intelligence hotwire in me at the United States Army Military Intelligence Academy ... The continuation of my biography background experience, graduate education and political experience is being held because of a Lack of authorities debriefing funds and interest for their liability to me. I am in a stalled police debriefing with the Houston Police Department waiting for me to sue to complete my debriefing for my background biography with them in the United States Army Military Intelligence Academy ... I have a doctor degree Phd. as a doctor of laws, medicine, theology, management, engineering and other subjects that are guaranteed by the United States Army in ROTC to be presented to me in a court of Law only. I will receive my doctor degrees in a court of law only ... The United States Federal Congress has encouraged me to want to become President of the United States so that I can do what the President of the United States of America is supposed to do and complete the federal and military government biography and autobiography." Mercer's reasons for running are just as colorful. They include: "To prove The Klu Klux Klan and the Communist Party are gangsters and organize crime in Business and Commerce through Eye Spy Community-Military Intelligence ... To prove that every person in the United States and world is hooked up on an Eye Spy Community-Military Intelligence (All Three) Electronic surveillance hot-wires approved by the United States Congress for the U.S. Government Electronic Surveillance of every citizen in America ... To Prove I will be the 2nd Negro President of the United States of America in 2008 ... To Prove President George Walker Bush, Jr. and other Public Officials have been Impeached by the United States Congress in 2004 for torture of me and my family, capital murder in my family, Espionage and other crimes against the state and humanity ... To Prove the government owes me Zillions of Dollars in money and is refraining to pay me and my business ... To Prove Jeb Bush is all in my house with disease ... To Prove My only Guardian Former Governor of Texas Ann Richards has just joined me MERCER FOR PRESIDENT CAMPAIGN ... [To Prove] I have solved every crime in America and the world for the last 15 years dating back to before Christ." There's lots more, but these excerpts should give you an idea of what you'll find on his campaign website. Link: Lee Mercer for President.


Sal Mohamed Sal Mohamed (Iowa)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Chemical engineer Sal Mohamed lost Democratic primary contests in Iowa for Congress in 2004 and Governor in 2006 -- but he does start the race with some minimal name identification in that early contest state. Mohamed's primary campaign tactic in his past Iowa runs could be described as low tech/low cost: walking around wearing "sandwich board" signs and waving signs at busy intersections. He launched his Presidential campaign just one month after losing the '06 gubernatorial primary. Mohamed's campaign theme is "Human Decency will Prevail," which is backed by his call for having millions of US consultants held promote economic development of poor nations, place US national interests ahead of personal interests, narrowing the gap in the US between rich and poor, developing an exit strategy for Iraq, and "taking politics out of our lives and putting science in." Unfortunately for Mohamed, he was born in Egypt and became a naturalized US citizen in 1983 -- meaning he is constitutionally barred from being President. He filed for the NH primary ballot, but was disqualified as ineligible for the office. Related link: Sal Mohamed for President.


Ole Savior Oloveuse O. "Ole" Savior (Minnesota)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Ole Savior, an eccentric artist and poet, has been a frequent candidate in Minnesota over the years for many federal, state and local offices. He usually finishes around the back the of the pack with 1% -- but he keeps running year after year. His top three concerns were a "nuclear-free world, [ending] world hunger, and better education for all mankind." His favorite movie is The Terminator, his favorite TV show is X-Files and his favorite book is the Bible's Book of Revelations. If elected, he promises to "create a new and more peaceful world for the next generation of children." He previously filed FEC paperwork for the 2004 race, but failed to qualify for any Presidential primary ballots. This time, he successfully qualifed for the 2008 New Hampshire primary ballot. Related link: Ole-Savior.org.


Michael "Mike" Skok (New York)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Repairman Mike Skok -- who describes himself as "a good Catholic" -- explaines he is running for President "to warn my fellow Americans of the erosion of our Christian heritage and values, and how it is seriously affecting our ability to survive in the Twenty-First Century." His lengthy social conservative platform seems entirely based upon his Christian beliefs. Skok has qualified for the 2008 New Hampshire primary ballot. Related link: Michael Skok 2008.


Jeff Thomas Jeffrey C. "Jeff" Thomas (Wisconsin)

STATUS: ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE. Orthopedic surgeon Jeff Thomas served several terms in elective office many years ago before being relegated to "perennial candidate" status with a series of failed Congressional runs. He served 12 years on the Janesville School Board (including three years as President) and four years on the Janesville City Council. Thomas then proceeded to lose runs for Congress in 1993, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004 and 2006. Now he's filed with the FEC to run for President in 2008. Thomas vows to improve health care by doing "everything possible to lead the government in it's quest for providing everyone with health insurance and to challenge the wealthy insurance companies to provide people with greater benefits at less cost." He also supports "decent jobs" -- but doesn't define what he means by it. Website: Jeff Thomas for Congress (official Congressional campaign site) and Health Care for All (official blog).


NOT RUNNING IN 2008:

Evan Bayh US Senator Evan Bayh (Indiana)

Evan Bayh had a great resume for a 2008 Presidential hopeful: US Senator, former two-term Indiana Governor, former Keynote Speaker at the Democratic National Convention, former Chair of the centrist Democratic Leadership Council, a telegenic family, etc. He set up a leadership PAC in 2005-06 and campaigned around the nation on behalf of local Dems. With much fanfare, Bayh launched his Presidential exploratory committee in early December 2006. He hired some top staffers, scheduled fundraising events and launched a new campaign swing to key states. Then, only two weeks later, he quit the race. Most media reports said the sudden emergence of Barack Obama as Hillary Clinton's perceived main rival for the nomination during those intervening weeks significantly contributed to Bayh's decision. "The odds were always going to be very long for a relatively unknown candidate like myself ... The fact remains that at the end of the day, I concluded that due to circumstances beyond our control the odds were longer than I felt I could responsibly pursue," explained Bayh. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Bayh.


Joe Biden US Senator Joseph R. "Joe" Biden Jr. (Delaware)

Senator Joe Biden withdrew from the race in January 2008 after a weak finish in the Iowa Caucuses. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Biden.


Phil Bredesen Governor Philip N. "Phil" Bredesen (Tennessee)

Wealthy businessman and Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen was mentioned in several reports in 2004-05 as a possible White House hopeful. Although he won a landslide re-election in 2006 in a "Red State," Bredesen announced in December 2006 he would not run for President in 2008. Bredesen said he "would love to be considered" for President if there were a movement for a centrist Southern Governor to run again in the future, but that he would not run in 2008. Related links: Office of Governor Phil Bredesen (official government site) and Bredesen for Governor (official 2006 campaign site).


Wes Clark Retired Army General Wesley K. "Wes" Clark (Arkansas)

Retired NATO Commander Wes Clark -- who made a late October 2003 entry in the 2004 Presidential race following a successful draft campaign -- vowed to make a decision on the 2008 contest by early 2007 so as to avoid the disadvantages of a late start. Clark revived his WesPAC organization in 2006, campaigned for Dems in the mid-term elections, began issuing regular media statements, and started to sound like an '08 candidate for a while. But then ... nothing. Finally, in September 2007, Clark endorsed Hillary Clinton for President. Related links: WesPAC (Clark's Leadership PAC), America Needs Wes Clark (Grassroots Supporters), DraftWesleyClark.com (Grassroots Supporters), 2008 Presidential Wire: Wes Clark (News Aggregator), and Wesley Clark: War Criminal (Negative Site).


Tom Daschle Former US Senate Majority Leader Thomas A. "Tom" Daschle (South Dakota)

Former US Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle -- who was narrowly defeated for re-election in 2004 -- spent much of 2006 looking like a likely 2008 White House candidate. He made frequent trips to early contest states, raised money for local Dem candidates, and launched a leadership PAC. "I've made a decision that I will not seek the Presidency of the United States. I've had a lot of encouragement and I've been very gratified to have the encouragement from within the state and around the country," he announced in December 2006. A number of factors reportedly played into Daschle's decision, including concerns about the ability to raise the estimated $50 million needed for a successful run for the Presidential nomination. Related links: New Leadership for America PAC (Daschle's leadership PAC); and Alston & Bird: Tom Daschle (Daschle's law firm).


Dr. Howard Dean Democratic National Chairman Howard B. Dean III (Vermont)

Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean energized the 2004 Presidential race with his dynamic use of the Internet to build a national movement. The frontrunner for much of Fall 2003, his campaign collapsed under a withering barrage of negative TV spots in the final days before the Iowa caucuses. Still, Dr. Dean provided the party with a feisty message and the backbone to oppose President Bush in 2002-03 period, when nearly all of the other Democrats in the race appeared to timid to criticize the Iraq war. Dean's campaign also attracted tens of thousands of young voters -- the so-called "Deaniacs" -- to become politically active for the first time. Once Dean ended his campaign, he quickly endorsed nominee John Kerry and campaigned energetically for the national ticket in the general election. The "Dean for America" (DFA) campaign quickly morphed into Democracy for America (DFA 2.0) -- a large national organization of progressive activists. Dean's Blog for America (official) site also remains active. Net activists (including this website) worked with grassroot party activists after Kerry lost the 2004 race to draft Dean for Democratic National Committee Chairman. After a few weeks of meetings with party activists and leaders, Dean jumped into the contest and -- despite tactit opposition from Clinton and Kerry loyalists -- was elected DNC Chair. During the DNC campaign, Dean promised he would not run for President in 2008 if he won the DNC Chair race. Despite the continuing enthusiasm of the Deaniacs for another White House bid in '08 -- the "50-State Strategy" success he presided over in the 2006 elections -- Dean repeatedly says he will keep his promise and not run in 2008. A sampling of the many unofficial Deaniac site would include Dean Nation, Truth and Hope, Dean Port, Gnet/Grassroots Network TV, Take Your Country Back, Thank You Howard, Dean Photos and Out for Democracy. Other related links: Wikipedia: Howard Dean (online resource) and JFK Library: Howard Dean - Profile in Courage.


Chris Dodd US Senator Christopher J. "Chris" Dodd (Connecticut)

Senator Chris Dodd withdrew from the race on January 3, 2008 after a weak finish in the Iowa Caucuses. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Dodd.


John Edwards Former US Senator John R. Edwards (North Carolina)

Senator John Edwards withdrew from the race on January 30, 2008 after a weak finishes in the early contests. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Edwards.


Russ Feingold US Senator Russell D. "Russ" Feingold (Wisconsin)

US Senator Russ Feingold -- an early P2008 favorite of progressive netroots activists -- announced in November 2006 he will not be a candidate for President in 2008. Feingold had traveled to 17 states over the preceeding two years on behalf of lots of local Dem candidates, had already launched his own leadership PAC, and raised over $2 million, all in preparation of a possible White House run. With the Democrats returned to majority status in the Senate with the 2006 elections, Feingold quickly decided he preferred to stay active in the Senate rather than run for President. He explained: "I relish the thought that in this new Congress we can start, not only to undo much of the damage that one-party rule has done to America, we can actually advance progressive solutions to such major issues as guaranteed healthcare, dependence on oil, and our unbalanced trade policies ... we need to stand up for a strong, principled Democratic party that is willing to replace timidity with taking the risks of promoting a platform of bold solutions to our nation's problems. ... I'm sure a campaign for President would have been a great adventure and helpful in advancing a progressive agenda. At this time, however, I believe I can best advance that progressive agenda as a Senator with significant seniority in the new Senate serving on the Foreign Relations, Intelligence, Judiciary and Budget Committees." He also said he would not initially endorse another candidate in the race: "The first choice would be somebody who voted against this unfortunate Iraq war. That may not be available. Second choice is somebody who at least said it was a bad idea ... I would be happy if [Senator Barack] Obama or [former Vice President Al] Gore ran." Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Feingold.


Al Gore Jr. Former Vice President Albert "Al" Gore Jr. (Tennessee)

Former Vice President Al Gore -- the 2000 Democratic nominee for President who won more total popular votes than the ultimate "winner" of the race -- was frequently mentioned as a prospect for the 2008 race. Despite the wide speculation, Gore made it clear in March 2005 that he will not be a candidate for President in 2008. According to MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Gore let the early word out of his disinterest leak out "to end speculation about a campaign that will never occur." In fact, Gore has stated he does not plan to ever again seek political office. Instead, he wants to focus on his environmental activism and building a national, liberal television network. The "Gore in 2008" boom started up again big time when his global warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth debuted -- and Gore said day after day he had no plans to run for President in 2008. That actually encourage Gore supporters, who see his frequent denials as proof he's really getting ready to run. Some of the "Draft Gore" groups include AlGore.org, DraftGore.com, AlGore-'08.com and Al Gore Support Center being the two most active. Gore resisted similar draft movements in 2004. Other related links: Clinton-Gore Alumni (White House alumni organization); Wikipedia: Al Gore (online resource). Because people did not seem to take him at his word as continued to give blistering attack speeches against the Bush Administration, Gore in October 2005, said unambiguously: "I have absolutely no plans and no expectations of ever being a candidate again." Yet, despite this, Gore cracked open the door a bit in September 2006: "I haven't completely ruled out running for President again in the future, but I don't expect to ... I offer the explanation not as an effort to be coy or clever. It's just the internal shifting of gears after being in politics almost 30 years." Since then, Gore keeps saying he is not running -- but many continue to hope he can be drafted into the race.


Mike Gravel Former Alaska US Senator Maurice R. "Mike" Gravel (Virginia)

Former Senator Mike Gravel actively campaigned for the Democratic Presidential nomination for over a year, particpated in the early televised debates, and appeared of many primary ballots. However, in March 2008, Gravel quit the Democratic Party, joined the Libertarian Party and announced he was now seeking the LP Presidential nomination. "I’m joining the Libertarian Party because it is a party that combines a commitment to freedom and peace that can’t be found in the two major parties that control the government and politics of America. My libertarian views, as well as my strong stance against war, the military industrial complex and American imperialism, seem not to be tolerated by Democratic Party elites who are out of touch with the average American; elites that reject the empowerment of American citizens I offered to the Democratic Party at the beginning of this presidential campaign with the National Initiative for Democracy," explained Gravel. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Gravel.


John Kerry US Senator John F. Kerry (Massachusetts)

Senator John Kerry, the 2004 Democratic nominee for President, indicated almost immediately after the end of the 2004 race that he intended to make a second run in 2008. That, and he was sitting on $18 million unspent from the 2004 race. Polls, however, were not kind to Kerry. He lagged in the single digits and an awkward joke seen as anti-military on the eve the 2006 elections seems to seal his fate. He delayed his decision, then announced in January 2007 he would not make a second run in 2008. Instead, Kerry plans to seek re-election in 2008. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Kerry.


Dennis Kucinich Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich (Ohio)

Congressman Dennis Kucinich, the most progressive candidate in the 2008 Democratic primaries, withdrew from the race after the Super Tuesday contest on February 5. Click here to view our detailed profile of Congressman Kucinich.


Janet Napolitano Governor Janet A. Napolitano (Arizona)

Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano was named in several reports in 2005-06 as a potential White House hopeful. Time Magazine named Napolitano as one of America's five best Governors in 2005 -- but she did zero to encourage the Presidential buzz. Although Napolitano scored a landslide re-election in 2006 in a "Red State," she announced in December 2006 she would not run for President in 2008. However, she made a point of saying she was not ruling out a run in the future. Related links: Office of Governor Janet Napolitano (official government site) and Napolitano for Governor (official 2006 campaign site).


Ben Nelson US Senator E. Benjamin "Ben" Nelson (Nebraska)

US Senator Ben Nelson told reporters in November 2004 -- when asked about the likely 2008 Presidential candidacy by US Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) -- that Hagael may not be the only Nebraska US Senator running in 2008. When asked to elaborate, Nelson said he wasn't ready to "take [a 2008 White House run] off the table." Since then, Nelson won an easy reelection victory in 2008 -- and has made no further comments about a Presidential race. Unless he states an interest otherwise, we're treating his silence on the subject as a strong disinclination to run in 2008. Click here to view our detailed profile of Senator Nelson.


Ed Rendell Governor Edward G. "Ed" Rendell (Pennsylvania)

At one time, Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell was being touted as a likely candidate because he had national stature and the ability to raise money. A former Democratic National Chairman during the later part of the Clinton Administration, Rendell has contacts with a national network of party leaders. In 2005, Rendell was being mentioned as possible White House hopeful in 2008. However, a competitive race for reelection in 2006 forced Rendell to focus his attention and dollars in the Keystone State. In August 2006, Rendell made it clear he would not run for President -- nor would he ever run for any other office again in the future. "This is my 14th election: -- enough is enough," he explained. Related link: Office of Governor Ed Rendell.


Bill Richardson Governor William B. "Bill" Richardson (New Mexico)

Governor Bill Richardson withdrew from the Presidential race on January 10, 2008, after weak showings in the Iowa caucuses (2%) and New Hampshire primary (5%). Click here to view our detailed profile of Governor Richardson.


Brian Schweitzer Governor Brian Schweitzer (Montana)

Populist and folksy Governor Brian Schweitzer repeatedly stated in 2005-06 that he doesn't plan to run for President in 2008 -- despite the fact that he was the target of a draft movement. In fact, he's joked that those attempting to draft him for President "are kooky" to promote the idea. In only his first term in elective office, Schweitzer clearly thinks the attention isn't appropriate. "I'm not that smart and I ain't pretty, so I don't know what they're talking about," joked the rancher/scientist-turned-politician. Besides, Schweitzer added, "If I stay in Washington for more than 72 hours, I have to bathe myself in the same stuff I use when my dog gets into a fight with a skunk." The Montana GOP Chair doesn't believe Schweitzer's claim of disinterest in running for President, noting that Schweitzer is increasing his profile in the national media. "There has to be someone, somewhere opening those [media] doors" for Schweitzer, said GOP Chair Karl Ohs. Schweitzer can, however, offer his take on why people seem interested in him: "Maybe it's because I'm kind of a straight-talker and tend to say it the way it is. A lot of politicians are scared of their own shadows so they parse their words." For a period in 2005, a bunch of the "netroots" activists who had supported Howard Dean in 2004 were promoting the idea of possible Draft Schweitzer '08 candidacy -- even though Schweitzer is more conservative than Dean. Schweitzer doesn't say he will never run for President, but he ruled out a 2008 run. Related links: Office of Governor Brian Schweitzer and BrianSchweitzer.com (official campaign site).


Al Sharpton Rev. Alfred C. "Al" Sharpton Jr. (New York)

Civil rights activist Al Sharpton said in January 2007 he was considering making a second run for President in 2008. "I don't hear any reason not to. If we're talking about the urban agenda, can you tell me anybody else in the field who's representing that right now? We clearly have a reason to run, and whether we do it or not we'll see over the next couple of months," he explained. In April 2007, Sharpton stopped toying with the media and said he would not be a candidate for President in 2008. Sharpton previously ran for President in the 2004 primaries. Related links: Al Sharpton Show (TV talk show); and National Action Network (Sharpton's civil rights organization).


Tom Vilsack Former Governor Thomas J. "Tom" Vilsack (Iowa)

Just two days after the Democrats recaptured control of Congress in the 2006 elections, outgoing Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack announced his candidacy for President. Vilsack, a former National Governors Association Chair, was also the then-Chair of the centrist Democratic Leadership Council (although he gave up the post shortly after announcing his candidacy). With little national name ID, Vilsack started the contest in the "second tier" of candidates -- although his early effort showed some real tech savvy and creativity. Yet, after just three months as an active White House candidate, Vilsack quit the race in February 2007. Poll numbers repeatedly showed him running fourth in his homestate of Iowa behind the first tier trio of Clinton, Obama and Edwards -- which likely convinced Vilsack he was a very longshot to break into the leader group. Click here to view our detailed profile of Governor Vilsack.


Mark Warner Former Governor Mark R. Warner (Virginia)

Nextel telecommunications company co-founder and former Virginia Governor Mark Warner (D) surprised everyone by announcing in October 2006 he would not be a candidate for President in 2008. The news was so unexpected because Warner had done everything needed over the prior two years to position himself as a likely White House contender. He launched a leadership PAC (Forward Together PAC), contributed to Democratic congressional hopefuls around the nation, and made repeated trips to key early contest states. "Forward Together has contributed more money this year to Democratic candidates and party organizations than any other federal leadership PAC. Our effort raised over $9 million. I headlined 86 events in 25 states to help raise or directly donate $7.3 million to Democrats this cycle ... But this has also been another kind of journey -- one that would lead to a decision as to whether I would seek the Democratic nomination for President ... After 67 trips to 28 states and five foreign countries, I have made that decision. I have decided not to run for President. This past weekend, my family and I went to Connecticut to celebrate my Dadís 81st birthday, and then we took my oldest daughter Madison to start looking at colleges. I know these moments are never going to come again. This weekend made clear what Iíd been thinking about for many weeks -- that while politically this appears to be the right time for me to take the plunge -- at this point, I want to have a real life. And while the chance may never come again, I shouldnít move forward unless Iím willing to put everything else in my life on the back burner. This has been a difficult decision, but for me, itís the right decision," explained Warner.


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