Tales from the Trail

First draft: Michael Phelps takes cue from politicians

Take note politicians. Michael Phelps might have some pointers for you.

PHELPS/He won eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics, but swimmer Phelps sounded more like a politician than an athlete in a morning TV interview today — repeatedly admitting he had made mistakes but sidestepping any direct admission that he had smoked marijuana.

In an interview on NBC’s “Today” show Phelps, who was banned from swimming for three months after a picture was published of of him smoking a “bong” pipe at a party last November, said he had made a “bad mistake”, a “stupid mistake” and showed “bad judgement.”

Asked directly if he had been smoking pot Phelps just said: “It was a bad mistake. I mean, we all know what, you know, what you and I are talking about. It’s a stupid mistake. You know, bad judgment. And it’s something that, you know, I have to, and I want to teach other people not to make that mistake.”

Michelle Obama also headlined one of the morning talk shows, giving her first network television interview as first lady to ABC’s “Good Morning America” from Ft. Bragg, N.C. USA/

She said it hurt to see so many military families have to rely on food stamps to get by and said she hoped to gather information and bring it back to the administration in order to draw attention to the problem and try to find a way to make things better.

Kerry takes convention stage again, rips McCain

johnkerry1.jpgDENVER – John Kerry, the failed 2004 Democratic presidential nominee, took the stage at this year’s party convention on Wednesday to praise Illinois Sen. Barack Obama – whose career he helped launch — and lambaste John McCain.

Kerry, who said he had been friends with McCain for nearly 22 years, used tough words to criticize the Arizona senator’s evolution from a maverick legislator to a presidential candidate.

“Before he ever debates Barack Obama, John McCain should finish the debate with himself,” Kerry said, listing what he described as McCain’s shifts on tax cuts, immigration, and climate change.