ABC News' The Note: First Source for Political News

The AP reports a man who fought on the opposite side of Kerry in Vietnam, "would vote any day for his former enemy over President Bush." LINK

Mark Z. Barabak traveled to Boston to offer up his Los Angeles Times' look at the 1996 Senate race against Bill Weld and how it may or may not prove instructive for this year's presidential contest. LINK

We couldn't resist Stuart Stevens' attempt to debunk the "Kerry's back against the wall propelled him to victory" myth.

"Today, some minimize Kerry's achievement. Stuart Stevens, who produced TV ads for Weld, points to the huge Democratic registration advantage in the state. 'It's a bit like the U.S. military saying their finest hour was the invasion of Grenada,' Stevens said. 'It was hardly a fair fight.'"

Helen Kennedy of the New York Daily News writes about the "extraordinary interest in the 2004 election" that is proven by the people who line the roads to catch a glimpse at Kerry's passing caravan. LINK

The Los Angeles Times' Ralph Vartabedian wrote on Saturday about criticism Teresa Heinz Kerry leveled against the "Christian right" in 1994, saying that religious conservatives spread hatred and aimed for "'the dark corners of the human soul.'" LINK

The story offered nary a hint as to how Mr. Vatabedian suddenly stumbled upon this speech, or why the piece was buried in the Saturday Los Angeles Times — a political-media graveyard if ever there was one!!!!

ABC News Vote 2004: the Big Four: Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin:

Kit Seelye of the New York Times takes a closer look at Ohio voters and the issues that are forming the choice for president there. The economy, the war, the candidate's records and gut feelings all play a role. LINK

For Kerry, the most stark implicit conclusion Ms. Seelye draws is that for some voters in southeastern Ohio, it ain't the economy, stupid.

On this Labor Day, the Cincinnati Enquirer's John Eckberg looks at the larger numbers of retirees going back to work — some because they want to and some because the need to. LINK

The Columbus Dispatch's Mark Niquette reports, "Experts say most Ohio taxpayers have benefited from Bush's tax cuts, even if higher state and local taxes offset federal cuts for some. Most people's overall tax burden still is lighter, the experts say." LINK

That's a lot of experts in one sentence!!!

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's Dresang and Gilbert write about how Gov. Jim Doyle is managing to both tout significant economic recovery in Wisconsin and relay the Democrats' message that the "economy is not up to par." LINK

John McCormick and Jeff Zeleny of the Chicago Tribune chatted with undecided voters in Wisconsin and Note, "Interviews conducted last week with three dozen likely voters from Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota revealed an electorate deeply frustrated with Bush's handling of the Iraq war and one almost completely lacking in burning excitement for Kerry." Sound familiar? LINK

John McCain has lamented publicly about the reopening of Vietnam wounds. The Philadelphia Inquirer (as we like to say) takes a closer look. LINK

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette uses the traditional Labor Day kickoff to size up (on the front page, below the fold) the state of both the Bush campaign LINK and Kerry's post-RNC "decidedly feisty tone." LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the battlegrounds:

KE04 and BC04 take the Midwest by storm. LINK

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