- - Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is trying to tamp down any speculation she could be Mitt Romney’s vice-presidential running mate.

Ms. Rice told “CBS This Morning” she’s not interested in joining Mr. Romney, who has more than enough delegates to win the presidential nod at the party convention in Tampa, Fla.

Ms. Rice said: “I didn’t run for student council president. I don’t see myself in any way in elective office.”

Ms. Rice also said, “There is no way that I will do this because it’s really not me. I know my strengths and weaknesses.” She said Mr. Romney will pick a strong running mate and she’ll support the ticket.

Ms. Rice predicted that Mr. Romney will bring “first and foremost an understanding” of the role the United States’ role in the world.”

SOUTH CAROLINA

Hunter: She, Edwards no longer a couple

COLUMBIA — Rielle Hunter says she and former presidential candidate John Edwards have ended their relationship.

Ms. Hunter told ABC’s “Good Morning America” on Tuesday that she and Mr. Edwards were still a couple until late last week, as details from Ms. Hunter’s memoir became public. The breakup was painful, Ms. Hunter said, but Mr. Edwards will still be involved with their daughter, Quinn, who is 4 years old and lives with Ms. Hunter.

“We are a family, but as of the end of last week, John Edwards and I are no longer a couple,” Ms. Hunter said on Tuesday’s show. “We decided together to end it.”

The book, “What Really Happened: John Edwards, Our Daughter and Me,” wasreleased Tuesday through a Dallas-based boutique publisher, BenBella Books. The Associated Press reported on the book last week.

In the book, Ms. Hunter describes intimate details about her affair with Mr. Edwards, whose campaign hired her as a videographer, and tells of his thoughts as federal prosecutors mounted a case against him on illegal campaign contribution charges.

Prosecutors had accused the Democratic politician of masterminding a scheme to use about $1 million in secret payments from two wealthy political donors to hide his pregnant mistress as he sought the White House in 2008.

According to Ms. Hunter, Mr. Edwards told her he would probably wind up in a low-security prison in Virginia if he was convicted, and Ms. Hunter said she planned to move nearby with their daughter if that happened. A judge declared a mistrial last month, and federal prosecutors have opted not to retry Mr. Edwards.

Ms. Hunter’s memoir includes intimate details about her affair with Mr. Edwards as his wife, Elizabeth, was dying of cancer. On Tuesday, Ms. Hunter said she felt it was necessary to tell the truth about her relationship, even if doing so was painful for her, Mr. Edwards or his other children.

Saying that she still loves Mr. Edwards, and that she believes he still loves her, Ms. Hunter said Tuesday that she was unsure of the future.

“We’ll see what happens,” she said. “I have no plans.”

STATE

Diplomat honored for urging embassy revisions

An American diplomat whose cables helped spur a re-evaluation of “overly barricaded” U.S. embassies has been honored at the State Department for his efforts to improve U.S. diplomacy.

Joshua Polacheck was given the award Tuesday for “constructive dissent” after arguing to higher-ups that diplomacy can be undermined when embassies are constructed outside of city centers and behind high walls.

His cables challenged the prevailing approach since the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. His cables helped lead to a departmentwide review of embassy planning.

The award was given by the American Foreign Service Association, the union for U.S. diplomats.

SENATE

Missouri’s McCaskill to skip Democratic convention

Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, one of the most vulnerable Democrats up for re-election in 2012, plans to skip the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.

Ms. McCaskill’s campaign said Tuesday she will spend the week campaigning in her home state instead. She joined a growing list of Democrats in conservative districts who have decided to avoid the convention, which will be a showcase of President Obama’s re-election campaign.

Mrs. McCaskill did not provide further comment on her decision.

Missouri was one of the few swing states that did not vote for Mr. Obama in 2008, and his approval ratings are stubbornly low there. Still, Ms. McCaskill’s absence will be notable: She played a prominent surrogate role for Mr. Obama in 2008, offering an early endorsement in his primary race against then-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and continuing to offer support throughout the general election.

Ms. McCaskill attended the 2008 convention, though she was not up for re-election that year. In the past, she has regularly skipped her party’s convention when she is on the ballot. In 2004, for example, she did not attend the convention even though she was her party’s nominee for governor in Missouri.

Republicans have said repeatedly that Ms. McCaskill is one of their top Senate targets in 2012. The GOP needs to net four seats to take control of the Senate, a task both parties believe will be difficult unless Ms. McCaskill is unseated.

NORTH CAROLINA

Organizers change venue for Democrats’ celebration

RALEIGH — Organizers of a celebration scheduled to start the Democratic National Convention are moving the Labor Day event from Charlotte Motor Speedway to the city’s downtown.

Charlotte In 2012 spokeswoman Suzi Emmerling said late Monday that as the date of the event drew closer, logistics became a challenge. Ms. Emmerling said moving the celebration to downtown Charlotte near the convention venue would make it more accessible and family friendly. The speedway is about 18 miles outside the city.

The convention has already been shortened from the traditional four days to three to have a day to celebrate the region.

The convention is being held at Charlotte’s Time Warner Arena. President Obama’s nomination acceptance speech on Sept. 6 is scheduled for Bank of America Stadium. Both arenas are in downtown Charlotte.

RHODE ISLAND

State repeals law that made online lying criminal

PROVIDENCE — It may be dastardly, but it’s no longer a crime in Rhode Island to go online and lie.

State lawmakers voted this month to repeal an obscure law that made fibbing on the Internet a misdemeanor punishable by fines of up to $500 and up to a year in prison.

The law was hardly ever enforced, but it technically made it illegal to fudge your age on a dating site, to text someone claiming to be someplace you aren’t or to include a white lie in an email.

State Rep. Chris Blazejewski pushed to repeal the law, arguing it was unconstitutional.

Mr. Blazejewski said that while lies may make you a scoundrel, they shouldn’t make you a criminal unless you’re trying to commit fraud or some other offense.

• From wire dispatches and staff reports.