Morning Brief: Who’s it gonna be?

Top Story Joe Raedle/Getty Images Political junkies and Barack Obama supporters are waiting anxiously for the presumptive Democratic nominee to announce his running mate, which could happen any minute now. Keep your cellphones handy, folks. Obama says he has picked his No.2, but will say only this about who it is: “I want somebody who’s ...

593085_080822_obama5.jpg
593085_080822_obama5.jpg

Top Story

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Political junkies and Barack Obama supporters are waiting anxiously for the presumptive Democratic nominee to announce his running mate, which could happen any minute now. Keep your cellphones handy, folks.

Top Story

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Political junkies and Barack Obama supporters are waiting anxiously for the presumptive Democratic nominee to announce his running mate, which could happen any minute now. Keep your cellphones handy, folks.

Obama says he has picked his No.2, but will say only this about who it is: “I want somebody who’s independent, somebody who can push against my preconceived notions and challenge me so we have got a robust debate in the White House.”

David Brooks hopes “Biden’s the one.” Could be: Andrea Mitchell reports that the Delaware senator is “gathering the clan.”

Decision ’08

What about McCain’s veep choice? Two Republican sources tell Time‘s Mark Halperin that it’s Mitt Romney. Take it with a grain of salt.

McCain’s failure Thursday to remember how many houses he owns has spawned a fun debate over whether the Arizona senator married to the multi-millionaire heiress or the Harvard-trained lawyer is more in tune with “regular Americans.”

Global Economy

Tensions between Russia and the West pushed oil prices up more than $5 Thursday. They’ve also devastated Russian markets.

Americas

A full 69 percent of Americans now say that controlling the border is more important than granting illegal immigrants legal status.

Rio de Janeiro is in a “real war” against criminal gangs and militias, according to the Brazilian state’s governor.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon proposed new measures to combat a crime wave that has seen more than 2,500 Mexicans die in drug-related violence this year.

Asia

The International Olympic Committee is investigating whether Chinese gymnast He Kexin is too young for the Olympics.

Kashmir is boiling with anti-Indian rage.

Pakistan has scheduled its presidential election for September 6.

Middle East and Africa

Iraqi officials say they are “very close” to reaching a final agreement on the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops by 2011. But Bush administration officials stress that the goal is “aspirational,” and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice cautioned Thursday that “all of those stories in the newspapers… probably ought to be disregarded until we have an agreement.”

The Iraqi government is cracking down on some Sunni allies of the United States.

Georgia

Today’s the deadline for Russian troops to withdraw. Georgia sees “very little, if any, movement,” but Russia insists everything is on schedule. “Peacekeeping” troops will likely remain on Georgian territory, however.

Famed Russian conductor Valery Gergiev led a requiem for South Ossetia’s war dead in Tskhinvali Thursday. Some South Ossetians want to join Russia.

Peter Baker looks at how a more hostile Russia could hurt U.S. interests.

Today’s Agenda

Obama is in Chicago; McCain is at his estate in Sedona, Arizona. Neither has public events scheduled. 

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