The Note

Neel: "She is a huge talent. I did not get a chance to talk to her today, but I'll be calling her tomorrow. Hopefully she will be a major part of the campaign. She would do a great job in the national organization."

RS: "What do you plan on doing about ads?"

Neel: "We'll be discussing that tomorrow. We are going to have the money but we need to be smart about where we go up."

RS: "Speaking of money?"

Neel: "The money is coming in. Since Iowa we have been bringing in big dollars. We are here to fight."

RS: "How did your candidate do in the debate?"

Neel: "I think he did fine. Sharpton did really well. And Edwards. I don't think Senator Kerry was as sharp as he could have been."

RS: "Do you plan on changing the Governor's style or fine-tuning his message?"

Neel: "I think we simply need to let him do what he does best. He connects to people because of his passion and energy. He is a great candidate. I think he needs to keep doing what he has been doing. We have to do a better job of supporting him. We did not win in Iowa and New Hampshire. We need to keep looking at creative ways of supporting him."

RS: "His passion often gets him in trouble."

Neel: "The flip side is it also energizes people. If you try to ton it down artificially you lose who he is. It's an art not a science. I don't want a group of people who reprogram him."

RS: "What about the Gore factor? Is it true that the VP insisted you come on board?"

Neel: There is absolutely no truth to that.

Read more from the trail with Dean on abcnews.com: LINK

The AP's Theimer sums up Dean's cutbacks LINK

The AP's Cass reports that "most people who back a candidate -- even those attracted to Dean through the Internet - can't name the campaign manager. Those who can are...intense believers" LINK

What Howard Dean calls "tough times," Matea Gold of the Los Angeles Times calls a precipitously fallen standing in the race. (Dearest Matea: We don't recommend rounding delegates.) LINK

The Washington Post's Dan Balz and Jonathan Finer report that Dean's hiring Roy Neel was a long time in coming and only accelerated by his losses in Iowa and New Hampshire. LINK

The Wall Street Journal's Phil Kuntz, in Washington Wire, looks at the nuclear fallout after the Dean-Trippi shakeup, and reports that the SEIU is considering dating elsewhere if Dean doesn't start winning.

The Washington Times' Charles Hurt looks at Dean's scaled-back plan for Feb. 3. LINK

As does the Boston Globe's Glen Johnson LINK

Vince Morris of the New York Post heard Howard Dean put a lot of eggs into the Michigan basket. LINK

Dean's Michigan gamble, Trippi's tears, and the candidate's debate performance all wrapped into one New York Daily News story. LINK

National Journal's Charlie Mahtesian looks at Dean's supporters in Congress, Noting that the 38 endorsements he has picked up on the Hill tend to be from members in solidly Democratic districts who have little to lose by choosing to give him the nod. "Dean's inability to attract House members from all but the least competitive districts suggests that a good portion of the Democratic caucus still worries that he is more George McGovern than Jimmy Carter. Even Dean's well-publicized gambit to provide financial assistance to vulnerable candidates has failed to change that perception," Mahtesian writes.

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