The Note

While the New York Times helpfully creates momentum for you with your New York would-be donors today with a story suggesting you raised $750,000 in a few days LINK, and Jon Alter disparages the money primary (for some reason choosing to forget/ignore that it has determined the nominee of both major parties every year but one in the modern era), we still think you are going to have to figure out how to raise a lot in a hurry. LINK

Whatever you raise NOT on the Web is going to come from people who Jordan, Elmendorf, etc., would dearly loved to have had.

People are just going to keep picking over your military career, with the Los Angeles Times twins of Richter and Brownstein finding you to be a military man with a past.

But elections, as Bill Clinton will tell you, are about the future, and we are still waiting to hear what you have to say about that.

For your sake, we hope you don't just end up playing the role for Howard Dean that Newt Gingrich played for Bob Dole in 1996 — freezing the field through your run and keeping anyone else from locking up new donors or growing in other political ways.

And, did we mention the Clintons and the shadow they are casting over you?

Senator Clinton's decision to take those "you go, girl!" e-mails encouraging her to run for president SOON off of her Web site was a nice accommodation to sanity. LINK

But going to speak in South Carolina on October 6 — not so much. LINK

So, as we said: General Clark is scheduled to campaign in South Carolina today. He will travel to New York City on Monday to be on the Charlie Rose show and attend a fundraiser at the home of Gail Furman (and maybe some more).

He is planning to meet with Pakistani President Musharraf in New York City on Tuesday before flying to Indiana to campaign there. He will be Chicago on Wednesday and then travel back to New York City on Thursday for the debate.

Elsewhere today and the week ahead:

The second Democratic National Committee-sanctioned presidential debate takes place this Thursday at 4:00 pm ET at the New York City campus of Pace University.

All 10 Democratic candidates are scheduled to attend this debate, which will focus on the economy. The event is sponsored by CNBC and the Wall Street Journal , and NBC's Brian Williams will moderate. CNBC's Ron Insana and Gloria Borger and the Journal's Gerald Seib will ask questions.

The president will travel to Richmond, Virginia, today to tour the Temporary Virginia Emergency Operations Center and to receive a briefing on hurricane damage at the Virginia State Police Academy. He will appear in an exclusive interview with Fox News' Brit Hume tonight at 8:00 pm ET on your local Fox station (not on FNC).

He addresses the United Nations in New York City on Tuesday morning. He meets with the president of Paraguay on Friday and spends the weekend with the Putins at Camp David.

Vice President Cheney makes remarks at a Bush-Cheney 2004 luncheon fundraiser in Hartford, Connecticut, today.

The heads of two of Washington's powerhouse lobbying outfits — the American Association of Health Plans and the Health Insurance Association of America — plan a 1 pm ET press conference call today, and could it be that a long-simmering merger with huge implications for how Washington will work is about to be consummated?

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