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Presidential Campaigns Explore a New Medium

Several presidential hopefuls, including New York Sen. Hillary Clinton and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama, have used the Internet to announce their candidacy. A political media expert analyzes the impact that the Internet will have on campaigns for the 2008 presidency.

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    Yes, the race is on, and a good deal of it, as we're hearing, is online. To help us look at that part of the campaign, we're joined by Carol Darr, director of the George Washington University's Institute for Politics, Democracy and the Internet.

    Welcome to you.

    CAROL DARR, George Washington University's Institute for Politics: Thanks.


    So how unusual is it to have these announcements coming online? And why are the campaigns doing it?


    It's unusual that they're announcing online. What's not unusual is that so much of the campaign is focused online. That's what's new, that they're announcing — two of them have announced online.


    When you say that it's not unusual that so much of it is online, you're referring to what happened in the last campaign round?


    In the last election, in 2004, with Howard Dean, what Howard Dean did online was considered very odd and very unusual. And people wanted to know, who are those people online?

    And in the space of four years, the people online are most of the people in the United States who cover the news and cover politics. So it's natural to put most of your campaign online.