The Note

" … many of the votes counted in the Bush administration's laundry list were votes to uphold budget enforcement rules, Bixby said. Such votes are 'usually considered a responsible thing to do' and are not interpreted as votes in favor of higher taxes."

The New York Times on the back and forth:LINK

The Washington Times' take is Cheney-centered. LINK

Nick Anderson of the Los Angeles Times looks at the use of the Internet as a means for political advertising in this post McCain-Feingold era. David Doak remains unpersuaded. LINK

And here's a link to Anderson's ad box on the latest from the Media Fund. LINK

The Washington Times' Patrice Hill recounts the views of economists who believe that job creation isn't really the province of the president, but try and convince the voters! LINK

The Washington Post's E.J. Dionne writes "President Bush had two big things going for him in this year's election. He was seen by a majority of Americans as a straight shooter. And he was viewed as the natural leader in the war on terrorism. Now both perceptions are in jeopardy. That explains the ferocity of the White House attack on Richard Clarke." LINK

The Wall Street Journal's Alan Murray Notes that you have to look no further than the's best-seller list to see how polarized the United States is.

ABC News Vote 2004: Sen. John Kerry:

The New York Daily News' Helen Kennedy on Kerry's upcoming surgery: "For a pol going head-to-head with President Bush, three weeks is an eternity without a rope line." LINK

Something the Boston Globe notices, too. LINK

The Kerry campaign "released a letter from his doctor attesting to Mr. Kerry's 'excellent health,'" write Doctors Wilgoren and Altman in the New York Times. LINK

Apparently the surgery is not all that is scheduled for tomorrow: "The operation is scheduled just a week after Mr. Kerry's return from a six-day ski vacation in Idaho, meaning he will have had no campaign events for 9 of 17 days. To offset this, Kerry aides are trying to squeeze in an appearance between the senator's 6:15 a.m. landing after an overnight flight from Los Angeles and the 11:30 a.m. surgery."

Joanna Weiss of the Boston Globe reviews Kerry's appearance on MTV's "Choose or Lose." Though it was off to a rough start, it seems the Senator may have succeeded as looking three-dimensional. Bottom line: "Kerry, in his red tie and dark suit, manages to come across as himself, stiff and craggy and generally uncool." As Weiss Notes, young voters are not necessarily looking for someone "cool" who they can "hang out with." LINK

The New York Times' Heffernan reviews Kerry's appearance on MTV and doesn't make it to the second word of the article without referencing FPOTUS. LINK

"Unlike Bill Clinton, Senator John Kerry is not a candidate young people want to flirt and giggle with. They want to come off deep, show him they dig the 60's. And that may be right where Mr. Kerry wants young voters, since he is not much for standard charm: not amused but impressed, even a little self-conscious."

Maria La Ganga and Matea Gold of the Los Angeles Times look at the evolving style of the Democratic candidate and his clear understanding of image making in these political times. You won't want to miss the bit about the shady press avail to avoid squinting. LINK

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