The Note: Just Born That Way

"According to the report, Obama raised $234,000 from Illinois donors, followed by contributions from California, New York and Texas. He had $445,110 on hand as of June 30."

Wednesday's Note incorrectly reported that Sen. Obama was scheduled to speak to the Young Democrats Convention in San Francisco yesterday. We regret the error.

"For many years, Congress has regularly responded to the public's anger over the power of moneyed interests by reining in campaign donations and limiting the ways that lobbyists can enrich the lawmakers they're paid to influence," Notes Jeff Birnbaum in the Washington Post. "But lawmakers and lobbyists have often found ways to get around the restrictions -- on 'soft money,' on gifts, on travel and the like. What lobbyists get is extra access to federal decision-makers that average citizens rarely have." LINK

The Washington Post's Allen Lengel writes up the FBI raids on Rep. William Jefferson's homes. LINK

Media:

The Washington Post has an interesting look on the front of Metro about the daily life of Judy Miller. LINK

In sunnier Gray (Lady) news: Close Note readers are constantly on the lookout for news regarding Richard Leland "Rick" Berke and rocker Jim Roberts -- both of the New York Times. Apparently, their past coverage of politics is not hurting their prospects at the paper. Congratulations, fellas. LINK

Other calendar items:

At 2:00 pm ET, Rep. Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) boards the USS Sequoia yacht along with former Washington Redskins Raleigh McKenzie and Brig Owens, for an event honoring a group of soldiers severely injured in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

The Young America's Foundation continues its 27th Annual National Conservative Student Conference with events beginning at 8:30 am ET. Be sure to catch an address by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) at 3:00 pm ET and dinner remarks by author and columnist Ann Coulter at 7:30 pm ET.

At 9:30 am ET, ABC's own Cokie Roberts joins Bob Woodson to kick off a three day volunteering conference sponsored by the Points of Light Foundation and Corporation for National and Community Service. The convention is dedicated to the sharing of practical knowledge, networking, and training the leaders of America's national service movement.

At 9:30 am ET, the Heritage Foundation hosts the Evolving Workforce Conference dedicated to a discussion of technology, labor markets, labor laws and the need for reform. Be sure to stick around for the keynote address by Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao at 11:30 am ET.

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