Mark Halperin’s three things to watch for in presidential politics for Friday, July 11:
1) Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd says he has received requests for documents from the Obama campaign’s vice presidential vetting campaign. Spokesman Bill Burton and Dodd’s Senate office have declined to comment. Sen. McCaskill, Gov. Sebelius and John Edwards are some of the prospective choices who will not say if they’ve been approached as well. Sens. Biden and Salazar say they have not been approached. Watch to see how other potential candidates deal with inquires from the media on that point. Many are smart enough to say they aren’t commenting, but watch to see if anyone else acknowledges they’ve been asked for documents.
2) The Phil Gramm flap got lots of coverage on Thursday and continues this morning. Yesterday, Obama mocked McCain adviser and former Sen. Phil Gramm for saying the economy is in a “mental recession” and America is a “nation of whiners.” McCain quickly repudiated his adviser, yet Gramm continues to stand by his remarks, saying “every word I said was true.” Watch to see if Senator McCain continues to be bedeviled by that today or if he’s able to put it behind him.
3) Take a look at some interesting figures in today’s Wall Street Journal. There are increasing signs that the financial advantage it was thought Barack Obama would have in the general election may not be as pronounced as some had thought. The paper calls Obama’s expected June numbers “underwhelming,” and quotes one aide saying $50 million would have been a healthy number for the month based on projections. One fundraiser says Obama is counting on raising $300 million of his own money and $180 million for the party, putting his projected overall budget at $480 million. Read that Wall Street Journal story on The Page, and take a look at Obama’s June fundraising numbers and his projections for July’s numbers.