ABC News' The Note: First Source for Political News

First thing's first. Bruce Springsteen himself explains his motivations and what he thinks about the election on the New York Times ' op-ed page today. LINK

"I don't think John Kerry and John Edwards have all the answers. I do believe they are sincerely interested in asking the right questions and working their way toward honest solutions. They understand that we need an administration that places a priority on fairness, curiosity, openness, humility, concern for all America's citizens, courage and faith."

Sorry to say, but it sounds … shall we say … Fentonized.

If you missed The Boss talking about it with Ted Koppel on last night's "Nightline," never fear — you can catch it today on ABC News Now.

And for the hard-core fans, Backstreets magazine sat down with Springsteen to talk about the tour, why he's doing it, the creative process, and whether or not the Kerry campaign got permission to use "No Surrender" as entrance music. (Answer: No, but that appears to be OK.) LINK

Gotta hand it to the guy: he's got message discipline.

Are "Springsteen Republicans" going to be important in the coming months? Check out this quote from one hard-core fan: "The diehard and longtime fans shouldn't be surprised, but there will be some fans who will never buy a ticket again."LINK

Coverage of yesterday's tour announcement:

The Los Angeles Times Ron Brownstein had some quality time with The Boss: LINK

The New York Times , with that awesome McKinnon quote. LINK

The Washington Post : LINK

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch: LINK

The Philadelphia Inquirer on the full-concert offensive. LINK

The Orlando Sentinel's Mark Silva on the Florida leg of the tour. LINK

The politics of national security: USA Today 's Kevin Johnson and Mimi Hall reports that the al Qaeda operative arrested July 13 in Pakistan made contact with people in the U.S. as recently as the U.S. LINK

"The Republican chairman of the House intelligence committee yesterday called on colleagues to be cautious in legislating reform of the intelligence community, prompting criticism from the panel's ranking Democrat that the process is moving too slowly," reports the Washington Post 's Walter Pincus. LINK

"Federal investigators concluded that Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.) divulged classified intercepted messages to the media when he was on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence," writes the Washington Post 's Alan Lengell and Dana Priest. LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: The Big Four: Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin: The Columbus Dispatch's Robert Ruth writes about a local lawyer and "avid Bush supporter" who got into trouble for telling his 13-year-old daughter to take a Kerry campaign sign out of the yard of a "determined Kerry supporter." LINK

The Washington Post 's David Maraniss examines the possible positive implications of Senator Kerry's trip to Cuba City, Wis., a town that was "snubbed" by President Bush but that Kerry made a point of detouring to visit. A classic Maraniss look at the mechanics of retail politics. LINK

Today's top Miami Herald story: Florida voting machines. "While state election officials publicly proclaim their faith in touch-screen voting machines in the midst of criticism, their own reports may have been the first to highlight potential shortcomings in the technology more than 18 months ago," reads the article. LINK

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