The Note

Kay Coles James, Director of the Bush Administration's Personnel Management "says Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's plan to revamp the department's personnel system tramples veterans' rights, offers a bad model for changing federal pay and represents a strategic blunder in the attempt to modernize the federal civil service government-wide," reports the Washington Post's Christopher Lee. LINK

The land of 5-plus-2-equals-7:

The Washington Times' Brian DeBose writes that Republican 527 groups are working overtime to catch up to those already in place on the other side of the aisle. LINK

Roll Call's Brody Mullins and Chris Cillizza report, "Top Republican campaign officials will begin meeting today to lay the groundwork to raise and spend $50 million or more on a soft-money advertising and get-out-the-vote blitz in support of President Bush and other Republican candidates, according to strategists involved in the efforts."

The politics of AIDS:

"The Bush administration announced a significant shift in its AIDS policy on Sunday, expediting the approval process for generic and combination antiretroviral drugs so they can be purchased at lower prices and provided more efficiently and safely to millions of infected people in Africa and the Caribbean," reports the New York Times' Altman. LINK

The politics of overtime:

The Washington Post's Lee and Straus report "almost two-thirds of 1.6 million civilian full-time federal employees received merit bonuses or special time-off awards in fiscal 2002." LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the House:

Roll Call's Erin Billings reports on House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.)'s drive to raise cash for South Dakota candidate Stephanie Herseth.

Billings writes, "Hoyer tapped roughly 10 lawmakers to work over their fellow Members until Congress adjourns for the Memorial Day recess, just a week before the June 1 special election that pits Herseth against state Sen. Larry Diedrich (R). Slightly more than half of the 205-member Democratic Caucus has contributed to Herseth so far."

In the battle for Washington's 5th district, the GOP is avoiding attacks on Democratic challenger Donald Barbieri and is instead focusing attacks on the national image of liberals "specifically House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco." LINK

Nader:

The Associated Press runs through Nader's Sunday advice to the Kerry campaign, and the Boston Globe's Pat Healy adds that an anonymous Kerry campaign source affirmed they plan to have a sit-down with Nader. LINK

The conventions:

The Washington Post's Michael Powell previews the protests that anti-Bush groups are attempting to stage in New York City during the Republican Convention in August. LINK

The New York Post reports some Gotham biz near the Garden is getting so nervous they are going to move their workers come convention time. LINK

Tramps like us: The New York Daily News writes "Democratic operatives are buzzing that the Boss has been talking about staging a free concert somewhere on Sept. 2, when President Bush is due to address the Republican National Convention."

Weekend must-reads:

The New York Times explored how proponents of a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage may not be finding the groundswell of support they anticipated across the country. LINK

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