by Steven Ertelt
November 13, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Arizona Sen. John McCain appears to be taking the initial steps towards a presidential bid in 2008. Meanwhile, pro-abortion Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold has said he will not pursue the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination and former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani is hedging.
Feingold wrote an email letter to his supporters saying he won’t run.
"I’m sure a campaign for president would have been a great adventure," Feingold wrote in the note, which appears on his Senate website. However, he said that, with Democrats now controlling Congress, he can better advance his agenda in the Senate.
"I began with the feeling I didn’t really want to do this but was open to the possibility that getting around the country would make me want to do it. That never happened," he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Meanwhile, McCain said over the weekend that he is taking steps towards a presidential run in 2008.
He is setting up an exploratory campaign committee that allows him to raise funds for a possible candidacy and pay for trips to key primary and caucus states to build support.
In an interview with Reuters, McCain said he is "doing things organizationally and legally" to prepare for a presidential bid but will not make a final decision until sometime early next year.
"Are we doing the things organizationally and legally that need to be done? Yes," he said. "There are certain things legally you have to comply with in order to continue to raise money and set up an organization."
"The important thing is we will not make a decision until I sit down with my family, but we will be prepared," McCain said.
Some political observers believe McCain may ultimately not run and they cite his age, he will be 72 next August, and his health, his recently had cancerous lesions removed from his skin, as possible reasons.
In addition, Giuliani spoke with the New York Times over the weekend about a possible candidacy.
"I haven’t made up my mind, nor has anybody else," he said.
During a speech at Pennsylvania’s Wilkes University, he downplayed the election results saying it didn’t represent a major shift in the thinking of Americans.
Also, pro-abortion Sen. Joe Biden, a Delaware Democrat, also reaffirmed his interest in seeking the presidency in 2008 but said that he probably won’t form an exploratory committee until next year.
"I still plan on running," he told Reuters on Sunday. I haven’t, quite frankly, thought through all of the … mechanics of it at this point in terms of when to announce setting up an exploratory committee, but I plan on doing that."
Biden, slated to become the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, ran for president in 2008 but dropped out after allegations he plagiarized a speech.
Other potential Democratic candidates include Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York; Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, the 2004 nominee; former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina, the vice presidential nominee in 2004; Sens. Barack Obama of Illinois, Evan Bayh of Indiana and Christopher Dodd of Connecticut; and New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson.
They all back abortion and forcing taxpayers to fund embryonic stem cell research.
On the Republican side, potential presidential contenders include Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who recently converted to the pro-life position; Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, who opposes abortion but backs embryonic funding; pro-life former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, pro-life Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, pro-life Ses. Sam Brownback of Kansas and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, and pro-life Rep. Duncan Hunter of California.