The Kerry campaign, which just might have been the source of the Times ' effort, put out this statement — not in the Name of the Gibbs, or, even the Name of the Jordan, but, going all the way, in the Name of the Senator:
"Today's story in the New York Times on Howard Dean and the NRA reminds us that the fight against special interests begins in our own party."
"In an NRA questionnaire, Howard Dean said he opposed a ban on assault weapons and opposed even a short waiting period before buying a gun to allow law enforcement to determine if the buyer had a criminal record. Howard Dean's opposition to sensible gun safety measures — measures now passed into law and saving lives but under siege by his friends at the NRA — is indefensible. And it explains why he has been endorsed by the NRA eight times."
"I believe we must put the safety of our children and families ahead of special interests like the NRA. As a candidate and as President, I will never pander to the extremist NRA for personal or political expediency. I will beat the NRA. I have done it before and I will make America's families safer and more secure."
Kerry plans to hit the issue in his own non-written in Iowa today midday. Going to Dean's left on a core party issue — let's see if it works this time.
Deborah Orin takes a timely look at Kerry's and Dean's efforts to brandish their hunting credentials. LINK
President Bush has no public events today. He campaigns in Mississippi and Kentucky on Saturday. He's at the ranch in Crawford with no public events on Sunday.
Vice President Cheney attends a fundraiser for Congressman Phil Gingrey in Atlanta today. He later addresses the Southwest Florida GOP in Bonita Springs, Florida.
Governor Dean campaigns in New Hampshire today. He has no public events this weekend.
General Clark campaigns in South Carolina today and in California over the weekend.
Senator Kerry goes pheasant hunting and campaigns in Iowa today. He campaigns in New Hampshire this weekend.
Congressman Gephardt has no public events announced for today. He campaigns in North Dakota on Sunday.
Senator Edwards is in Texas with no public events announced for today. He campaigns in Oklahoma on Saturday and in Iowa on Sunday.
Senator Lieberman has no public events today or tomorrow. He campaigns in South Carolina on Sunday.
Congressman Kucinich has no public events today. He campaigns in Ohio on Saturday and in California on Sunday.
Reverend Sharpton campaigns in South Carolina this weekend.
Ambassador Moseley Braun is in Chicago for the weekend with no public events.
The economy: Is it blistering or sizzling?
A lot of adjectives have been used to describe yesterday's economic numbers and the feverish 7.2% growth of the third quarter.
The Wall Street Journal 's Jake Schlesinger and Jon Hilsenrath have far and away the most balanced and best look at the politics and substance of the growth figures and what they mean for the landscape broadly defined, framing the economic news in primarily political terms.
They Note that the growth report had little effect on Wall Street and that the rosy economic news, fueled partly by specific conditions (mortgage refinancing, consumers spending their tax cuts) that won't be repeated in other quarters and not coupled with job creation, still presents a potentially sticky situation for the president.