The Note

TODAY SCHEDULE AS OF 9:00 am (all times ET):

—8:30 am: The Labor Department releases the January Consumer Price Index —9:00 am: Sen. John Edwards campaigns in Johnson Square, Savannah, Ga. —9:45 am: Off-camera press briefing by White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan —12:30 pm: Vice President Cheney speaks at a Bush-Cheney '04 fundraiser at the Wyndham, San Juan, Puerto Rico —12:30 pm: On-camera press briefing by Press Secretary McClellan —1:00 pm: Sen. Edwards visits Prince George's Community College, Largo, Md. —1:00 pm: Politics Live on ABC News Live and AOL —6:00 pm: Sen. Edwards meets with voters at the Polish Cadet Hall, Buffalo, N.Y. —6:30 pm: Vice President Cheney speaks at a Florida Republican Party event, Tampa, Fla. —6:20 pm: Rep. Dennis Kucinich gives a presentation at Carpenter's Hall, Virginia, Minn. —9:30 pm: Rep. Kucinich gives a presentation at the University of Minnesota, Duluth, Minn. —10:30 pm: Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger delivers the keynote address at the California Republican Party Convention, Burlingame, Calif.

NEWS SUMMARY

Here are today's most important quotes about the four people who -- it turns out in the end -- were the only ones with a chance to be elected president in 2004:

President Bush: "…(Bush campaign) strategists said elections are about the future . . ."

"A 1970 Harvard Crimson interview in which Kerry said that U.S. troops should be deployed 'only at the directive of the United Nations' will be fair game, the (Bush campaign) officials said."

-- from the SAME must-read Howie Kurtz Washington Post story on the BC04 ad strategy!! LINK

"For the first time some Republicans are facing the prospect that the president could lose."

-- from "a top staff member for a GOP senator" in a Boston Globe story -- one of several this news cycle in various places along these lines LINK

John Kerry: "The only other major delevelopment occurred at 12:01am EST as a three car Secret Service detail descended upon Senator Kerry's Beacon Hill home in Boston. Only moments prior to the body watch invasion, Kerry's minivan and home had been entirely unguarded."

-- from today's daily campaign report of ABC News' world-class Kerry reporter Ed O'Keefe, with his latest work of classic American journalism (More on this below.)

John Edwards: "But now I need a little give and take/The New York Times, The Daily News/It comes down to reality/And it's fine with me 'cause I've let it slide/Don't care if it's Chinatown or on Riverside"

-- from the Billy Joel classic "Hate New York City/It's cold and it's damp/and all the people dressed like monkeys"

-- from the Randy Newman classic "Some sweet day when blossoms fall/And all the world's a song/I'll go back to Georgia/'Cause that's where I belong

" -- from the Ray Charles classic "Why, oh, why, oh why, oh--/Why did we ever leave Ohio?!

" -- from the Broadway classic "Wonderful Town" LINK

"Avenge the patriotic gore/That fleck'd the streets of Baltimore,/And be the Battle Queen of yore"

-- from "Maryland, My Maryland"

Howard Dean: "I have to vent. I think he's nuts."

-- AFSCME's Gerald McEntee on Howard Dean, as quoted by the New York Times' Adam Nagourney, in what only Nagourney would call "a leisurely interview"

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