The Note

AP's Sidoti looks at the BC04 ad strategy and has done her homework to Note these figures: "Bush will spend about $4 million to run moderate levels of ads over 10 days compared to the $6 million to $9 million he had been spending each week to saturate local broadcast channels in 18 electorally competitive states, according to ad industry sources familiar with the purchase." LINK

"Dick Cheney presented Chinese leaders with new evidence on Wednesday about the scope of North Korea's nuclear program and warned that 'time is not necessarily on our side' in negotiations," reports Joseph Kahn of the New York Times. LINK

The Washington Post's Kessler and Cody write "Vice President Cheney warned China's leaders Wednesday that any efforts by Beijing to thwart democracy in Hong Kong would likely reinforce the budding movement in Taiwan to formally separate from China." LINK

David Broder posits that during his press conference, Bush's only failings came while providing unsubstantial answers to important questions asked by the press. LINK

Also look for something new to distract you at your desk today, courtesy of your friends at the RNC -- a new Web video game that will give you fond memories of your childhood and hours spent playing Space Invaders.

This time, the RNC presents Tax Invaders: "Only YOU can save America from John Kerry's Tax plans. Defend the country against John Kerry's Tax raises. If you choose to accept this mission, complete the form below and get ready to play 'Tax Invaders'!"

ABC News Vote 2004: Bush v. Kerry:

The Boston Globe's Canellos writes that the two presidential candidates are currently "stymied in their early attempts to frame the 2004 presidential race to their advantage," and with all the uncertainty over key issues such as national security, jobs, and gas prices, the two are "standing flat-footed on shifting sands." LINK

"No variables of this magnitude existed in the last two elections, 1996 and 2000, they said, and historians have to go back as far as 1980 to find an election stirred by such a potent mix of foreign and domestic challenges."

Note: Canellos mentions "senior Republicans" who have acknowledged that Karl Rove's team is off to a rough start.

Veepstakes:

Dick Morris goes off the deep end a bit on Page Six today trying once again to put Sen. Hillary Clinton on the ticket -- this time by suggesting the timing of the release of her husband's book as part of the plan to make her the running mate. LINK

ABC News Vote 2004: the battlegrounds

Parental notification is likely to be on the presidential election ballot this November in Florida … LINK

Political reality # 431: Voter registration groups are rarely, if ever, truly non-partisan. "In a state where Hispanics already hold considerable political influence, a new nonpartisan voter outreach group is embarking on an ambitious drive to put 50,000 more Hispanics on the voting rolls before November."

So far, that sounds ok … .. though groups registering Hispanics tend to be Democratic.

"The group, called Mi Familia Vota (My Family Votes), is partnering with MTV's Choose or Lose and Rock the Vote initiatives, local media and several well-known leaders across the state to get the word out."

There's the rub. Find us a Republican who believes that Choose or Lose/Rock the Vote is entirely, forthcomingly non-partisan in his goals, orientation, staff or projects. LINK

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