The Note

The Arizona Republic Notes that the response was mixed among National Council of La Raza who attended. LINK

A new KAET poll released on Arizona voters showed Bush with a wide margin lead over Kerry (47 percent to 35 percent). This poll contrasts last week's Arizona Republic poll which showed the candidates in a dead heat. According to the Arizona Republic, the sample size for the new poll was much smaller than theirs.LINK

The Arizona Daily Star's Barrett Marson reports "Supporters of a ballot initiative to restrict state services to illegal entrants say they have enough valid signatures to force a fall vote." LINK

The Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune prints a mini series on the impact on the war in Iraq on locals. There are stories of a couple of local soldiers who have been in Iraq. Nathan Swing's family is begging for his return: LINK

Jeff Williams and Mike Laughton say the support they got from home and the help they gave Iraqis made the whole thing worth it. LINK

The Minnesota paper also talks to a few local anti-war activists. LINK

As well as visitors to a Middle Eastern deli where "Arabs and North Africans meet for lunch, smoke hookahs and discuss events in their old countries. With a television tuned to Al Jazeera, the conflict in Iraq is never far away." LINK

Veepstakes:

The Kerry campaign's communications director tells ABC's Dan Harris that the sped-up handover hasn't sped up veepstakes plans … but take that for what it's worth … the campaign is ready at a moment's notice … as we call it at ABC … they're on hard standby … to set up events once Kerry makes up his mind (if he hasn't already).

Senator Kerry has two down days beginning tomorrow in Pennsylvania; he'll spend Thursday night in Washington.

The AP reports that its random survey of 11 Missouri county Democratic chairs found that eight preferred John Edwards, one preferred Tom Vilsack and only two favored their hometown/homestate boy. LINK Why? For one thing, it's said that Gephardt has little connection to voters outside the ring of St. Louis suburbs. And while's brought money and pork to the state, he's never established connections with key Democrats in more rural areas. 18 years of national aspirations — he started running for president in 1986 — have alienated others. Gephardt partisans dispute all these contentions.

--Would a John Edwards vice presidential nomination make a huge difference for Democrats in South Carolina and North Carolina?

It's one of the reasons why Democrats with a hand in the Senate race want him on the ticket.. It cuts both ways.

Edwards could help energize Democrats in North Carolina who aren't enthusiastic about Erskine Bowles and potentially, help in South Carolina (though Inez Tenenbaum has her base — and his, from the primaries — locked up).

Certainly, Republicans acknowledge that a Kerry-Edwards ticket would force the Bush the campaign to divert resources to both states, setting up full campaigns with full GOP field operations. In North Carolina in particular, the subsequent presidential visits might boost Rep. Richard Burr's candidacy, not to mention in South Carolina, where the distinctions between Tenenbaum and Kerry on taxes, the war, and gay marriage would be all the more acute.

So while it might not be a wash, an Edwards on the ticket certainly doesn't strike us as a magic bullet for Democrats in those two states.

Scheduling items:

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