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Not enough unity to go around

January 11, 2008 |  1:07 pm

DETROIT -- Unity '08, which began last year as an attempt to bridge the left-right political divide and draft consensus candidates for an independent presidential campaign, has all but pulled the plug on itself. The reason: Key players have left, support flagged, Federal Election Commission regulations hobbled fundraising, access to state ballots proved difficult, and everybody, it seems, wants to heal the same divide.

Obviously, this unity stuff ain't easy.

The whole explainer is here, but some details bear highlighting:

"Barack Obama, for example, has made the theme of unity and the necessity of bridging the partisan divide an absolutely central theme of his campaign. And just last week, a group of former and present national office holders -- independeUnity_08nts, Republicans and Democrats -- met in Oklahoma for the sole purpose of stating their belief that at the present perilous moment, a unity government is the only hope of solving the nation's mounting problems. When you find agreement between the likes of former RNC chairman Bill Brock and Gary Hart, you're onto something....

"Waiting in the wings, should the divide persist, is the potential of a serious non-partisan candidacy by Mike Bloomberg, the Mayor of New York (two of our founders, Doug Bailey and Gerald Rafshoon, have stepped down from the board and may have more to say about their plans in the near future)."

Bailey is a longtime Republican strategist and Rafshoon was President Jimmy Carter's White House comunications director, and it will be interesting to see whether they pop up as advisors to Bloomberg.

-- Scott Martelle

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