John McCaslin

If you plan on being one of the tens of thousands of Americans who will be attending any number of Republican or Democratic presidential campaign rallies this summer and fall, try to get one of the candidates — John McCain, obviously, or Barack Obama or Hillary Rodham Clinton, or both if this tug-of-war keeps up — to autograph whatever you might be holding in your hands.

Consider that a first-edition copy of Mr. Obama's 2006 best-selling book, "The Audacity of Hope," costs about $5 these days, given it's no longer a new release. But be entrepreneurial enough to have the Illinois senator sign the book — perhaps when he's working the rope line, as somebody at Jackson State University in Mississippi did during Mr. Obama's March 10 "Stand for Change Rally" — and you can earn a hefty amount of money for the effort.

As of yesterday, a signed copy of Mr. Obama's book was up for sale on the eBay auction block, and so far had generated 15 bids with the highest being $191.49.

Meanwhile, when Mrs. Clinton was campaigning last month in Pennsylvania, a supporter held out his otherwise-ordinary "Hillary for President" campaign poster for the candidate to autograph — "Hillary," she signed — which now on eBay has attracted 13 bids, the highest thus far $52 plus $10 postage and handling.

Short handing

We had written yesterday that President Bush didn't buy into man-made "global warming" during his first seven years in office, so why expect him to now as a lame-duck president?

To which Scott Stanzel, deputy assistant to the president and deputy press secretary, responded almost immediately after the item appeared: "It seems you've bought into the traditional misinformed short handing of the president's views on climate change. Going back years (to June 2001), he has acknowledged that humans are having an impact on our climate."

John McCaslin

John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .

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