The Note

The Boston Globe 's Glen Johnson reports on Senator Kerry's endorsement from the fire fighters, which Johnson calls a "fresh example of establishment support for his presidential campaign." LINK

The Boston Herald's Noelle Straub reports that Senator Kerry went after The General yesterday after receiving the fire fighters' endorsement. LINK

The Des Moines Register 's Tom Beaumont reports on Senator Kerry's letter to Governor Dean asking him "to rethink his stance on repealing all the tax cuts enacted under President Bush." LINK

We assume the old letter trick/gambit is homage to Lehane.

Dean:

The Barre Montpelier Times Argus leads,"Going into today's debate with his nine Democratic rivals, Howard Dean needs to keep his arrogance in check and make sure the newcomer to the race — retired Gen. Wesley Clark — does not hit him from the left, according to the former governor's advisers and political debate specialists." LINK

From ABC News' Dean reporter Marc Ambinder on the letter:

"Gov. Dean, in the name of campaign manager Joe Trippi, responded to Senator's Kerry's letter, which urged Dean to'change your position on two issues that are fundamental to our nation and Democratic Party and: the middle class tax relief and protecting Medicare.'"

"Note the first few words … . the Dean campaign says that they never actually received the letter from the Kerry. But Kerry campaign spokeswoman Kelley Benander insists they faxed the letter to Dean's Burlington headquarters earlier in the day."

"A Dean aide says the campaign is still at least a week and a half away from its big economic policy roll-out."

More from Ambinder:

"At a senior center in Dubuque Sunday, Dean will unveil another component of his health care plan — his prescription for long-term care for the elderly. Dean plans two more policy speeches in upcoming weeks. He'll talk about higher education during his 'Generation Dean' tour. Still in the hopper are Dean's proposals to create jobs and revive the economy. (To cut taxes, or not to cut taxes; that IS the question!)"

"With about a million raised since latest the bat challenge began, it's not easy for everyone to see how the campaign can meet their goal of $5 million by the end of the month. Of course, press skepticism is what lowers expectations for Dean to smash, what fuels Joe Trippi more than the Diet Pepsis in the refrigerator below his desk, and is generally seen as a catalyst for action by the idealists on the third floor of 90 Farrell Street."

"But they do have more than $4 million to raise in seven days, and that's an awful lot of money." "An early plan was to put multiple bats up at once as soon as the first bat was topped off. But they'd anticipated raising more early, so it's unclear what will happen now."

"Still, never underestimate the power of the Dean's supporters on the Net. If there's a mantra to be repeated, it's that."

"The Bat goals tend to gain momentum as they go along, and psychologically, the campaign believes that people tend to withhold donations until the last minute. The campaign hopes the 9/29 record-setting conference call and nationwide series of house parties will also spur giving."

"Even if they don't make $5 million, the campaign expects to raise at least $12 million, and some fundraisers are being told that the real figure will be between $14 and $15 million (maybe more)-- spectacular numbers in just about every way."

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