The Note

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TODAY SCHEDULE (all times ET)

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NEWS SUMMARY

The Bush and Kerry traveling press corps are already sick of hearing that this is the most important election of our lifetimes and that the choice this year couldn't be more stark between two candidates who have very different views of America.

Indeed, there are times when members of the world's fourth-oldest profession should probably remind ourselves that the "important" should at least usually trump the "interesting" in our coverage of this race.

At the same time, part of what American presidential politics is about is spectacle, and part of what running for president is about is proving that you have (to use the title of the best book ever about the presidential process) What It Takes to run and win and (thus) serve well.

To navel gaze for just a sec, the three things The Note gets most criticized for are:

A. our obvious pro-Bush bias B. our obvious pro-Kerry bias C. our daily choice of leads

Today is a typical day where we face a choice (in our own way, the same choice faced by every cable news block and network morning show producer; all talk radio hosts; Internet gossipists; and, even, people around the watercooler or copier): so much to choose from with which to start in framing the political day.

(Which is why, today, we are trying to get away with choosing to wax on the topic of our having to choose….)

Will it be gas prices or gay unions?

The education dream or cookies and cream? (You need to have read the Kerry Portland pool report to get that one.)

Will it be sarin or see-through?

Scott McClellan's every word or Scott Peterson's every word?

9/11 hearings or "Fahrenheit 911"?

The education of America's children or the education of John Kerry?

The fate of Rummy or the fate of Shrummy?

SCOTUS decisions or FLOTUS fashions?

Dennis Kucinich or Howard Dean?

The Jewish vote as a policy matter or the Jewish vote as a political matter?

The bridge to the 21st century or the bridge over 8th Avenue?

Allison Dobson's press wrangling skills or Allison Janney's?

Frankly, we can't decide, but we hope to have enough wisdom and judgment to choose correctly more often than not the rest of the way.

Today, President Bush speaks to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee at the Washington Convention Center, Washington, D.C.

Sen. Kerry participates in a conversation on economic opportunity at the Portland Metropolitan Workforce Training Center, Portland, Ore., and attends a staff party at his headquarters, Washington, D.C.

First Lady Laura Bush attends a Larry Diedrich for Congress luncheon, Sioux Falls, S.D., attends a rally with BC'04 supporters at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Nev., and attends a fundraiser at a private residence, Las Vegas, Nev.

Former President George H.W. Bush attends fundraiser for Bush-Cheney '04 in London at 11:00 am ET. The "Stop the War Coalition" plans to picket the London hotel hosting the Republicans Abroad dinner.

9/11 Commission hearings begin in New York, N.Y.

The Senate resumes consideration of the HR 3104, providing medals to servicemen and women. A vote will occur at approximately 11:15 am ET. Senate will then resume consideration of the DOD authorization bill.

ABC News Vote 2004: Bush-Cheney re-elect:

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