The Note

The AP's Frederic Frommer reports, "A longtime Minnesota Republican and former state Supreme Court justice, Ed Stringer, is backing Democrat John Kerry in this year's presidential election." LINK

"An Associated Press review of campaign finance reports found that Stringer, who also worked for President George H.W. Bush, has contributed $2,000 to Kerry."

The Kerry camp named Arkansas Democratic operative Rodney Shelton as its selection to run its statewide campaign on Monday, writes the AP's David Hammer. LINK

Women are playing an increasingly large role in West Virginia politics, including in the state's Kerry and Bush campaigns, says Tom Diana of the Wheeling News-Register. LINK

In Toledo, they are hoping for a clean election, but doing so will cost taxpayers an additional $350,000, with Lucas County being forced to rent voting machines for the Nov. 2 election. LINK

In West Virginia, it is the high cost of a gallon of milk -- not gas -- that is hurting the state's economic growth, reports the Herald-Dispatch. LINK

Though New Hampshire lost more manufacturing jobs per capita, at least one economist is now projecting that the state will lead all of New England in job growth for the next five years, according to the Union Leader's Michael Cousineau. LINK

Prominent state Republicans and Democrats have come together in New Hampshire to form a bi-partisan group opposed to a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, says the Nashua Telegraph. LINK

People in Maine were surprised to learn yesterday that the tax bill that passed the House last week has a tobacco buyout that will send nearly $300,000 to the battleground state -- never mind that they don't actually grow tobacco in Maine. LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the Senate:

Republicans will select a challenger for Democrat Inez Tenenbaum in the South Carolina Senate race.

Polls open at 7:00 am ET and close at 7:00 pm ET.

The State has a handy guide to DeMint and Beasley: LINK

More money and endorsements by former rivals give Rep. Jim DeMint a "critical edge" over former Gov. David Beasley in today's runoff election for the Republican Senate nomination in South Carolina. LINK

And in Chicago, divorce records released last night reveal that Jeri Lynn Ryan, the former wife of Illinois Senate candidate Jack Ryan, accused the businessman of pressuring her to have sex with other men while he and other men watched.

Jack Ryan denies the allegations.

Anticipating last night's release, senior Republicans tell ABC News said they expect fellow Republicans to put pressure on Ryan to withdraw from the Senate race, although Ryan has vowed to stay on and fight.

And one Illinois GOP source told ABC News' Karen Travers Monday night: "This is the type of behavior won't play in Peoria. His behavior, compounded by the lies, make him an unelectable candidate."

This source, who is in contact with top Republicans in the state, said that Ryan had not been forthcoming about the contents of the files.

This account is confirmed by Republicans in Washington who have a stake in the race.

But as of this morning, the NRSC was still behind Ryan.

From the Chicago Sun Times:

"A former investment banker, Jack Ryan declined to revisit the allegations Monday, saying he stands by his earlier court response. And Ryan insisted he did not mislead anyone by arguing he was only trying to protect the couple's 9-year-old son and suggesting the documents contained nothing embarrassing." LINK

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