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YouTube Adds Political Spotlight

YouTube wants to solidify its position as a major platform in the 2008 Presidential election.

The online video hub owned by Google added a new weekly feature, YouTube You Choose '08 Spotlight, to its News & Politics category. Each week the Spotlight will look at a particular candidate, offering them a chance to present themselves and engage with the YouTube community.

The first candidate to participate is Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. Other candidates who have agreed to participate include Senator Joseph Biden, Senator Hillary Clinton, Senator Chris Dodd, Senator John Edwards, Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Congressman Duncan Hunter, Congressman Dennis Kucinich, Senator John McCain, Senator Barack Obama, Congressman Ron Paul and Governor Bill Richardson.

YouTube has been a political lightning rod since it appeared at the end of 2005. Videos which appeared on it before the 2006 election were closely analyzed by pundits for their effect on the race and a recent mash-up of Hillary Clinton and a 1984 Superbowl commercial for Apple seemingly kicked off the 2008 election cycle.

YouTube's new Spotlight joins the sites existing "You Choose '08" area, one of many political video hubs on the Internet.