The Note

Caucus begin no earlier than 1:00 pm ET; caucuses end no later than 3:00 pm ET. There will NOT be any entrance/exit polls conducted in this contest. ABC will be covering this event unilaterally by getting results directly from the executive director of the state party and receiving occasional vote total updates distributed by the party. Beginning at approximately 4:30 pm ET, the state party will begin sending results in half-hour increments. The party hopes to have "the bulk" of the vote in by 7:00 pm ET. The party expects to report final results by 9:00 pm ET.

Virginia's Jefferson-Jackson Dinner:

Three days before the commonwealth's Feb. 10 primary, Kerry, Edwards, Clark, and Sharpton will attend a dinner that party officials describe as their biggest fundraiser ever. Speakers will speak in the order they appear on the ballot: Sharpton, Kerry, Clark, Dean, and then Edwards.

C-SPAN says it will be there; thank you, Mr. Scully.

NEWS SUMMARY

Don't forget, Michigan and Washington caucuses today!

The New York Times ' David Halbfinger on the Kerry "tour de force" in Michigan Friday with Dick Gephardt leading a band of pro-Kerry elected official all-stars on the Massachusetts senator's behalf. LINK The Los Angeles Times' Ron Brownstein focuses on Tennesee and whether a win there by Kerry could erase all hope for Edwards and Clark of winning the nomination. LINK

Kerry rocks in the Democrats Abroad caucus! LINK

The Takoma Tribunes' Kenneth Vogel reports that it will be a horse race between Senator John Kerry and Governor Howard Dean in today's Washington caucuses. LINK "Michigan Democrats urged the party faithful on Friday not to be discouraged from voting in today's caucuses by recent polls showing a lopsided race" reports the Detroit Free Press' Kathleen Gray and Patricia Montemurri.LINK Kerry the Closer: The New York Times ' Kate Zernike finds Kerry's resuscitation in the 1996 campaign against Bill Weld "provides valuable insights into" Kerry "as a campaigner, his combative instincts and how he deals with adversity. " LINK

David Brooks puts the "special" in John Kerry's interests, highlighting the special names Johnny Chung, AIG, and David Paul. LINK Dan Balz and Vanessa Williams on Kerry's moves to "stretch" his lead and the Clark-Edwards Southern face-off. LINK R. Jeffrey Smith writes of The General's papers on Kosovo which allude to pressure Clark felt to end the Kosovo war by folks who wanted to see the conflict end in time for Veep Gore's presidential campaign. Sandy Berger says he doesn't remember it that way. LINK The Washington Post 's John Harris looks at the Dean campaign's return to audaciousness as the Governor's candidacy looks to be as long a shot as he did way back when. LINK The Boston Globe 's Glen Johnson looks at Dean's mention of taking a veep slot … and has a reference to the "'final days'" of his campaign. LINK

The New York Times ' Jim Rutenberg on the Dean camp's discovery of the "fickle" press corps. LINK The New York Times ' Richard Stevenson on the POTUS MTP appearance — Note the use of the phrase of the "heavy dose of politics." LINK

Note Sec. of State Powell joined the First Lady in defending the president from AWOL charges on Friday in a radio interview with Sean Hannity. The word "scurrilous" appears in the transcript …

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