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Friday, June 13, 2008

MIDWESTWARD HO!

DNC Moves It

Moving quickly to take control of the Democratic Party, Sen. Barack Obama will shift much of the infrastructure of the Democratic National Committee from its Capitol Hill headquarters to his campaign offices in downtown Chicago, DNC officials said yesterday.

The party's political functions and some other operations will move to Obama's offices in the Loop. The DNC's get-out-the-vote operation will be integrated with Obama's massive voter mobilization efforts, as will the Democrats' increasingly sophisticated voter identification program. Communications, opposition research and much of its Internet operation will likely remain in Washington.

"We are now one team effort working together to ensure that Barack Obama is the next president of the United States," said DNC communications director Karen Finney. "Our goal is to quickly consolidate these efforts into one operation and effectively drive one national strategy."

The move is not unprecedented. Some DNC operations were moved to Nashville in 2000, and a migration similar in scope to this year's took place in 1992, when Bill Clinton moved much of the party to Little Rock. Obama moved one of his top aides, Paul Tewes, to the DNC on Wednesday. Last Friday, Tewes, Obama and DNC Chairman Howard Dean held a conference call with state Democratic leaders to map out the shake-up.

"What's unusual is the speed," said Tom McMahon, DNC executive director. "That's what's catching people off guard."

-- Jonathan Weisman

BUH-BYE TO CAMPAIGNING

Paul Revolution Morphs

The revolution has just begun, according to Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.), who said yesterday he is officially suspending his presidential campaign and is launching a nationwide effort to elect like-minded libertarian individuals to office.

"The presidential campaign was phase 1," said Jesse Benton, Paul's spokesman. He said Paul is forming a nonprofit that will tap into the activism and fundraising energy created by his bid for the Republican nomination.


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