The Note

Hans Nichols of The Hill writes of the DNC outreach to the Congressional Black Caucus. LINK

"Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe has assured black lawmakers that the presidential campaign of Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) will not arrive unannounced or uninvited in black lawmaker's districts."

The morning show wrap:

All three morning shows led with striking video of burned-out SUVs and references to "unairable" pictures of the civilians and soldiers attacked and killed overnight in Fallujah. Condi Rice and President Bush, who led all three evening newscasts last night, were bumped to second place and not even mentioned in GMA's opening headlines.

Following coverage of Iraq and Condoleezza Rice, but preceding numerous looks at MJ's visit to Capitol Hill, senior Bush adviser Karen Hughes used a chat with ABC News' Charlie Gibson on "Good Morning America" to argue that President Bush's interaction with the 9/11 commission has been "unprecedented" — and skewed by the press.

Asked by Gibson whether she worried that the President's message of repeatedly resisting the 9/11 commission only to give in to their requests looked bad, Hughes argued, "The perception is a little bit from reality. One of the problems is that news values speed rather than thoughtfulness … I'm worried about what I think was a real mischaracterization that resulted last week — that the result of much of Mr. Clarke's testimony is someone in the Bush or Clinton administration was responsible. No one was responsible for these attacks except for al Qaeda. It's very important that the American people know that and remember that."

(Later, when chatting about how well she and the President knew each other, Hughes Noted, "For example, he knows that I'm tall, not big, because I've had that conversation with him.")

She was buttressed by Mr. Russert, who said on "Imus in the Morning" that the press gets so caught up in "the story of the day" it loses sight of the fact that "just 90 days from today," the United States is scheduled to transfer power in Iraq. He went on to note that last night five U.S. troops and four foreign nationals were killed last night.

(Asked by Imus about Leslie Stahl's "dopey" husband, Russert had no comment.)

If you were watching NBC's "Today Show," you saw two 9/11 family members sit down with Katie Couric. Jim Boyle, who lost his son on 9/11, was supportive of President Bush. Kirsten Breitweiser, who lost her husband, thinks much more needs to be done.

And on CBS' "Early Show," 9/11 Commission Chair Tom Kean was interviewed by Harry Smith and made no news.

And on the day when the new liberal network Air America goes on the air, standard bearer and liberal icon Al Franken had the Note of the Morning when he responded thusly to Katie Couric's mention that Fox News had sued him: "In the United States, satire is protected speech, even if the object of the satire doesn't get it."

Other Notes of Hughes' (staying on) message:

Did she push Rice to testify? "I don't think it's fair that I pushed. I agreed with the decision."

"I will point out yesterday the polls showed the president with a higher approval number than he's had. He made his decision from a position of strength."

"I worked at the White House in a senior position. I never saw the presidential Daily Brief."

ABC News Vote 2004: Sen. John Kerry:

From ABC News' Kerry campaign reporter Ed O'Keefe:

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