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Presidential Candidates

September 11, 2012 | Steve Lopez
If you weren't already hopelessly cynical about American politics, here's the perfect chance for you to wake up, slowpoke. The presidential campaign is running full bore, meaning there is virtually no chance of hearing constructive conversations about policies that will affect our lives for years to come. 'Tis the season of partisan exaggeration and simplification, multimillion-dollar super PAC distortions, and bold, inspired lack of specificity, particularly when it comes to jobs and the economy, a centerpiece of this election.
September 7, 2012
The Institutional Revolutionary Party's Enrique Pena Nieto has twice been declared the winner of Mexico's presidential election, yet the runner-up, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, refuses to recognize the results. Instead, the leftist candidate is preparing to hold a demonstration Sunday and threatening to establish a kind of shadow presidency, just as he did in 2006, when he narrowly lost that vote. That's unfortunate. Mexico can't afford the kind of long and divisive battle that Lopez Obrador is threatening to wage.
September 2, 2012 | By Chris Kraul, Los Angeles Times
MARGARITA ISLAND, Venezuela - On a campaign visit here last month, presidential candidate Henrique Capriles ran through the streets of beach town Boca del Rio at breakneck speed with hundreds of supporters in tow. At another stop, he played a fast-paced, 10-minute game of full-court basketball with young supporters in Altagracia. His strenuous agenda was designed to contrast his youthful athleticism with the cancer-stricken and now seldom-seen incumbent, President Hugo Chavez. But can the 40-year-old run fast enough and score enough points with voters to unseat the entrenched and charismatic Chavez?
August 29, 2012 | By Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times
Among the most common adjectives used by supporters to describe Rep. Paul D. Ryan are "genuine" and "principled. " "He's real," said supporter Tim Stephens as he lingered after a Ryan speech outside Philadelphia, bursting with bromance for the Republican vice presidential hopeful. ("I love you, man!" he shouted as Ryan shook hands in the crowd.) "That's what he brings to the ticket. Paul Ryan's real. " It's an important part of Ryan's appeal, along with intellectual heft, a gym rat's physique and a boyish charm that belies his 42 years.
August 29, 2012 | By Paul West, Washington Bureau
TAMPA, Fla. - Mitt Romney officially gained a historic presidential nomination Tuesday night as Republicans tried to steer national attention toward their storm-shortened convention and a tight fall race against President Obama. The former Massachusetts governor became the first Mormon to be nominated for president by either major party, a distinction that eluded his father, George Romney, an unsuccessful Republican candidate in the 1960s. The milestone, ensured months ago by Romney's primary-season victories, ended a nomination journey of more than five years that included his defeat in the 2008 contest.
August 25, 2012 | By Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke defended the central bank's efforts to stimulate the economy, even as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney criticized those steps and said that, if elected, he wouldn't reappoint Bernanke to the post. Bernanke defended the Fed's efforts in a letter to Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista) released Friday. The Fed is considering another round of bond-buying to boost the sluggish recovery. "There is scope for further action by the Federal Reserve to ease financial conditions and strengthen the recovery," Bernanke said in the letter to Issa, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
August 24, 2012 | By Paul West and Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times
TAMPA, Fla. - Republican officials started to exhale Friday as confidence grew that Tropical Storm Isaac won't shut down Mitt Romney's nominating convention next week. The Tampa area isn't out of danger, however. Forecasters cautioned that the projected track could shift significantly after Isaac passes Cuba and heads into the Gulf of Mexico. Wind and rain from Isaac's outer reaches are expected to arrive late Sunday in the convention city, along with thousands of delegates and guests.
August 22, 2012 | By Mitchell Landsberg, Michael Finnegan and Michael A. Memoli, Los Angeles Times
RALEIGH, N.C. - Rep. Paul D. Ryan  shrugged off differences with Mitt Romney on abortion policy Wednesday, saying Romney's views, while more moderate than his, were "a good step in the right direction. " Ryan, the presumptive Republican vice presidential candidate under Romney, has taken a sharply conservative view on abortion in the past, saying he opposes it in all circumstances except to save the life of the mother - a position that would outlaw abortion even in cases of rape or incest.
August 22, 2012 | By Melanie Mason, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Rep. Paul D. Ryan has cultivated his "affable wonk" persona into an effective moneymaker, winning over CEOs and K Street lobbyists to build a fundraising machine that has boosted his standing on Capitol Hill and helped make him one of the GOP's most influential figures. In 2002, the Wisconsin congressman established a so-called leadership PAC, a fund that allows him to raise money to give to other lawmakers, but the fund did little until 2006, when he began his rapid rise in the House Republican hierarchy.
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