ABC News' The Note: First Source for Political News

The Bangor News reports the unemployment taxes Maine assesses on corporations are going down -- "bucking the trend" nationally. As reporter Mal Leary points out, there is good and bad that comes from that. LINK

Perhaps they thought it was too "French": Maine transportation officials are dumping the use of the Metric system in the state and returning to "English" measurement units, reports the Portland Press Herald. The Note is convinced this will have some bearing on the presidential election, but how, we can't say. LINK

The Minneapolis Star Tribune's Cy Carpenter writes that Bush has not kept his word with rural Minnesota farmers, and that it could hurt the incumbent come election time. LINK

The Des Moines Register's editorial board thinks it's time we faced the(ir) facts: the tax cuts are not creating jobs. LINK

The lead headline of the Arizona Daily Star will speak to the super environmentally conscious Arizona voters: "Kerry, at Canyon, says he'd increase money for parks." LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the Senate:

The Washington Post's Blaine Harden traveled north of the arctic circle and still found Alaskans who think Sen. Lisa Murkowski's biggest obstacle to re-election is her father's legacy. LINK

Floridians: prepare yourself for millions worth of GOP Senate ads: LINK

The Washington Post's Mary Fitzgerald wraps Barack Obama's day campaigning with Sen. Edwards. LINK

The first poll's out: uphill battle doesn't begin to describe the magnitude of Alan Keyes' challenge. LINK

The AP's Mike Robinson reports that Keyes "came out swinging" yesterday when he attacked his opponent Barack Obama's views on abortion calling them "the slaveholder's position." He says Obama's record on late term abortion violates the principle that all men are created equal "I would still be picking cotton if the country's moral principles had not been shaped by the Declaration of Independence," Keyes said. He said Obama "has broken and rejected those principles -- he has taken the slaveholder's position." LINK

The Chicago Tribune's Liam Ford and John Chase write that both Obama and Keyes are trying to paint their opponent as "outside the mainstream." LINK

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports Sen. Specter's campaign will not challenge the petition signatures handed in by Constitution Party candidate James Clymer. LINK

The politics of national security:

The New York Times' David Johnston and David Sanger report that though al Qaeda leaders are being killed or captured, new, lower-ranking members and recruits are stepping into their place -- revealing a deeper bench and more complex structure for the terrorist organization than had been previously thought, and throwing a crimp into President Bush's comments about the success of U.S. forces in killing or capturing al Qaeda leaders. LINK

The New York Times' Eric Lichtblau and Michael Luo report "federal security officers will take over the screening of all passengers on helicopter tours in New York City, after officials found that suspected Qaeda operatives in Pakistan had photographs, a brochure and other information about the tours." LINK

Elisabeth Bumiller of the New York Times reports President Bush's Monday comments that the U.S. will continue to pressure Iran to stop its nuclear weapons program -- through other countries. Sanctions were not effective, Bush said. LINK

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