The Note

Also intriguing, if true: "'the Kerry campaign also has sidelined its new religion adviser, closing journalists' access to Mara Vanderslice and ignoring her advice on how to appeal effectively to religious voters.' 'Every time something with religious language got sent up the flagpole, it got sent back down, stripped of religious language, a Kerry campaign source said of Miss Vanderslice's ideas on overcoming Mr. Kerry's secular image."

Evidently, Ms. Duin hasn't heard Kerry's new stump speech, with has at least one prominent biblical allusion.

The New York Post 's Deb Orin picks up on some recent comments Teddy Kennedy made to Boston magazine regarding the controversy surrounding John Kerry's Catholicism being perceived at odds with his political beliefs. LINK

"'This pope gave Communion to Gen. [Augusto] Pinochet,' the brutal Chilean dictator accused of murders and human-rights violations, Boston magazine quotes Kennedy as saying."

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Senator Kerry is scheduled to speak at the 33rd annual Rainbow/PUSH conference on June 29. On Leadership Summit Day, June 27, invited guests include Senator John Edwards, former Vermont

Governor

Howard Dean, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., and Illinois' Democratic Senate candidate, Barack Obama. LINK

Kerry's national campaign chairwoman, former New Hampshire

Governor

Jeanne Shaheen, spoke in Iowa Thursday about how Kerry would have approached the Iraq situation better than Bush, who "wasn't honest with people in this country about why we went into Iraq." LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: Bush v. Kerry: AP lays out the proposed formats for this fall's presidential debates and vice presidential debate laid out by the Commission on Presidential Debates yesterday. LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the battlegrounds: What a waste? Today, with the president in the state, the Reno Gazette-Journal says that "Republicans and Democrats alike want to hear him talk about the one issue that has topped the campaign lists of Nevada politicians for decades: Yucca Mountain." LINK

Democrats are taking the opportunity to claim the president lied about the nuclear waste dump, while Republicans can take solace in a new Nuclear Energy Institute poll that shows 33 percent of voters (up from 26 percent previously) approve of the Yucca Mountain project. LINK and LINK

And Yucca Mountain may be an important issue in key states other than Nevada, like Maine. LINK

The "battlegroundness" of Nevada was confirmed yesterday by the Secretary of State's office, which announced the state is "getting more competitive between the major parties" in terms of registered voters. LINK

Given Northern Nevada's booming economy, Bush's visit to the state could not come at a better time — except the Reno Gazette-Journal questions this morning whether the "region's blazing job growth, robust business expansion and blistering housing market" are because of White House policies or local issues. LINK

The corporate tax bill passed in the House yesterday contains a measure that would provide sizable tax relief to voters in three key battleground states — Florida, Nevada and Washington state — that do not have state income taxes, by allowing residents to deduct sales taxes from their federal taxes. The tax breaks are expected to save taxpayers in the states about $500 per year. LINK

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