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Sources: Craig Smith in line to head Gore 2000 campaign

By John King/CNN

WASHINGTON (December 1) -- White House political director Craig Smith is in line for a top job in Vice President Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign, administration and Democratic sources tell CNN.

Smith is leaving the White House effective January 1. The sources said he has talked with the vice president in detail about serving as either chairman or manager of his campaign. One source intimately involved in the discussions said "there's no ink out yet," but Smith was certain to serve in a major role.

Smith was a top aide to Bill Clinton when he was Arkansas governor, held senior posts in both the 1992 and 1996 Clinton campaigns, and also served as Democratic National Committee political director in Clinton's first term.

Gore publicly has said he wants to wait as long as possible before shifting into campaign mode, but he has been working feverishly behind the scenes on building an organization. In the 24 hours after the midterm elections, for example, Gore made about 40 calls to Democratic candidates for state and local offices in New Hampshire, host of the first presidential primary.

Gore has trips to New Hampshire and Iowa on tap for December.



RELATED STORIES

No independent counsel for Gore (11-24-98)

Bush, Gore early front-runners for 2000 (10-27-98)

Gore rivals emboldened by scandal (9-28-98)



RELATED SITES

White House Web site

Vice President Al Gore's Web site



MORE STORIES:

Tuesday, December 1, 1998

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