Today's Schedule (all times Eastern):
—9:15 am: Governor Howard Dean speaks to the AFL-CIO convention, Detroit —9:30 am: Senate convenes for legislative business —9:30 am: Senate Armed Services Committee hears testimony from Ambassador Paul Bremer and General John Abizaid, Capitol Hill —9:45 am: Off-camera White House press gaggle with Scott McClellan —10:00 am: House convenes for legislative business —10:15 am: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Congressmen Ciro Rodriguez and Robert Menendez hold a news conference to discuss the Democrats' Hispanic agenda, Capitol Hill —12:30 pm: Reverend Al Sharpton holds a media availability at Amy Ruth's soul food restaurant in Harlem, New York City —12:45 pm: On-camera White House press briefing with Scott McClellan —1:30 pm: House Armed Services Committee hears testimony from Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, Ambassador Paul Bremer and General John Abizaid, Capitol Hill —2:00 pm: General Wesley Clark greets supporters at Bowling Green Park, New York City —2:15 pm: Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante makes remarks on veterans' issues at Patriotic Hall, Los Angeles —2:20 pm: President Bush meets with members of the congressional conference on Medicare modernization, White House —3:00 pm: Arnold Schwarzenegger attends a town hall meeting, Los Angeles —4:00 pm: Democratic National Committee presidential debate hosted by CNBC and the Wall Street Journal at Pace University, New York City —4:00 pm: House International Relations Committee hears testimony from Ambassador Paul Bremer, Capitol Hill —4:00 pm: Governor Gray Davis meets with the Los Angeles County Professional Peace Officers Association to talk about Meagan's Law, Monterey Park, Calif. —4:00 pm: California Republican county chairs meet to discuss whether to endorse a candidate for governor, Sacramento —7:00 pm: Democratic National Committee dinner honoring the presidential candidates at the Sheraton New York Hotel, New York City —8:00 pm: Governor Davis participates in a town hall forum sponsored by Town Hall LA, Burbank, Calif. —9:00 pm: Representative Dennis Kucinich meets with supporters at the Flat Hotel, New York City —9:45 pm: Democratic National Committee reception for young professionals and the presidential candidates at the Sheraton New York Hotel, New York City —11:35 pm: Secretary of State Colin Powell appears on The Late Show with David Letterman
Q. What's the only thing worse than a barrelful of hung-over Googling monkeys?
A. A barrelful of Googling monkeys stuck in middle seats on the D.C.-New York Delta Shuttle to cover a debate with stringent usage rules.
-- ancient Note riddle
Last night's ABC News Culinary Clash in the Capital party featured the first historic meeting between Jill Alper and Ken Mehlman (The Note feels it might have been present at the creation at the birth of the next decade's Quinn and Gillespie); a monstrously competitive limbo competition (Congratulations, Ben Ginsberg!); and an eerily Floridian narrow Bush win by over-vote in the dessert competition.
The California debate proved two things: Stan Statham is more of a Ted Baxter or Admiral Stockdale type than a George Stephanopoulos type, and bad format married with a weak moderation is a recipe for causing some to paraphrase Ray Donovan and ask, "Where do I go to get my 90 minutes back, and who TiVoed 'West Wing' for us?"