The Note

Lawrence also has a sidebar talking about the candidates, Gephardt included, talking about tragedy in their lives. LINK

From ABC News' Gephardt campaign reporter Sally Hawkins:

Lucky for Rep. Gephardt, a very gorgeous but very boring Naomi Watts preceded him on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" Tuesday night. Not usually regarded as the life of the party, the Congressman seemed to bring relief to an otherwise dragging show.

Gephardt had the crowd laughing out loud with the standard stump jokes that Iowans have chuckled at for months. Before getting serious with stories about his daughter Chrissy coming out of the closet and his son Matt's battle with childhood cancer, he told Leno he's often recognized in public but sometimes is mistaken for Dan Quayle, or a "guy who sold an insurance policy in Denver," or a "weatherman on CNN."

Leno seemed surprised when Gephardt swung hard at President Bush, with the Congressman saying, "If you had met with him every week since 9/11, you'd be running for President."

Read more from the trail with Gephardt on LINK


Writing up the "streamlined" Edwards stump speech, the New York Times ' Randal C. Archibold Notes "it remains to be seen if he is getting through to voters." LINK

The Senator will take on lobbyists and the "culture of Washington" today from, of all places, Ames, Iowa, and Ron Brownstein got a peek at the speech. LINK

The Raleigh News & Observer 's John Wagner reports that Edwards is seeking stringent disclosure requirements for lobbyists, effectively barring them from moving directly into government jobs where they can help former colleagues. LINK

More from the AP's Mike Glover. LINK

Howie Kurtz writes about Edwards campaign staffers taking on The General. LINK

From ABC News' Edwards campaign reporter Gloria Riviera:

Cover Boy Number One: At 8:45 pm in Glenwood, on a black street under a pelting icy rain, Edwards' rental van pulled up to a corner coffee shop. Edwards hopped out and ducked in to talk to the crowd.

Converse to the predominate behavior of the press corps and staff (yawns all around), Edwards was up and animated, lingering to shake hands and pitch his book as he had all day. "If you see this book in a store, please buy it," he told one crowd. "That nice guy on the cover? That's me."

Cover Boy Number Two: Hunter Pruette, Edwards' field director of travel, a.k.a. "Body Man," has seemingly had some sight issues of late. Fortunately for Edwards, who depends on Pruette to read the lengthy daily schedules faxed to his hotel, Pruette had heretofore unseen spectacles at the ready. No wire rim, slightly smudged and altogether academic-looking.

Not bad if one wants to promote a serious and loyal, knowledgeable and trustworthy image. Coincidentally, a CNN crew is shooting a profile of Hunter on this trip.

Read more from the trail with Edwards on LINK


New York Times ' Diane Cardwell previews Senator Lieberman's plan to offer paid family leave with a well-placed exclusive, and says the Senator "is taking a page from Mr. Clinton's efforts to stake out an agenda on family issues as a way to reach out to moderates." LINK

The AP carries Lieberman's announcement that he will move to New Hampshire in January. LINK

So does the Concord Monitor. LINK

AP's Kate McCann writes that Lieberman called for the U.S. military to improve its peacekeeping skills. LINK

From ABC News' Lieberman campaign reporter Talesha Reynolds:

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