Election 2004
Democratic Party
Sen. Bob Graham

[No birth time known. Chart set for 12 Noon.]

ANNOUNCED CANDIDATE: Senator Bob Graham has harbored Presidential ambitions for years -- but he has always downplayed the speculation until this time. As the ranking Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee, the low-key Graham has seen his political profile rise with his steady stream of TV appearances during the War on Terrorism. Graham has called for more military action against the international terrorist networks before the US considers moving forward with any attack on Iraq. Since entering politics in 1966, Graham has never lost an election. A multi-millionaire and close relative of the family that published the Washington Post, Graham re-tooled himself in Florida into a photo-op populist through his clever "Workdays" gimmick in the 1978 gubernatorial race. Then a little-known state senator, Graham won the race in a major upset after spending 100 days working in various jobs around the state (teacher, dock worker, bank teller, farmer, carpenter, flight attendant, etc.). Since then, Graham has continued to do his Workdays -- and his site logs the nearly 400 he's worked to date. As Governor, Graham signed more death warrants than anyone in Florida history. He also pushed for educational reform and Everglades restoration programs. In both 1984 and 1988, his friends printed "Graham for VP" buttons for the national convention delegates -- but those efforts never went anywhere. Term limited as Governor in 1986, Graham instead ran against a GOP incumbent US Senator and won by a 10-point margin. During his years in the Senate, he's built a fairly centrist record. Graham confirmed in December 2002 that he is actively considering three options for 2004: running for President, running for re-election, or retiring from politics entirely (or, possibly, running for both President and Senate re-election). The Senate retirement rumors are nothing new, as Graham had openly considered giving up his Senate seat and running for Governor in 1998. In 2000, Graham was a finalist on Gore's shortlist of potential VP runningmates (a move that, in hindsight, could have made a major difference in Florida). Graham exudes almost zero charisma -- but he's bright, he's never been implicated in any scandal, and he comes from a key state the Dems need to win 2004. Graham -- who will be 67 in 2004 -- planned to announce his 2004 decision on February 3, 2003. Instead, a previously undetected heart problem derailed his announcement -- and Graham had open-heart valve replacement surgery in late January. After a quick recovery, Graham filed paperwork for his exploratory committee in late February 2003. Graham reported raising $1 million as of the close of the March 31, 2003 federal reporting period -- not bad, considering that amount only represented three weeks of telephonic fundraising in his homestate. Graham also scored a nice coup when John Edwards' campaign manager and another top aide defected to his campaign in March 2003. Graham Bio Notes courtesy of politics1.com

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