The Note: End Game

Meanwhile, President Bush and first lady Laura Bush make 9:35 am ET remarks at the White House Conference on Helping America's Youth at Howard University in Washington, DC. The President holds a 1:20 pm ET event in Florida and participates in a tour of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, FL at 3:55 pm ET. The President returns to the White House at 7:00 pm ET.

Vice President Cheney is in Washington, DC today where he will receive his regular briefings and where he will attend a closed press evening reception for Rep. Barbara Cubin (R-WY).

The Select Hurricane Katrina Committee holds a hearing on "Hurricane Katrina: Preparedness and Response by the Department of Defense, the Coast Guard, and the National Guard of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama" at 10:00 am ET.

At 11:30 am ET in US Capitol Room HC-9, Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) and Congressman Artur Davis (D-AL) discuss legislation that they have introduced that would allow displaced residents from the Gulf coast region who are temporarily located in other states to maintain their voting privileges in their home states (Alabama, Mississippi, or Louisiana) for federal elections through the 2008 election cycle.

New York Gov. George Pataki addresses the Clinton County Republican Party and visits Davenport, IA.

DNC Chairman Howard Dean appears at a "Say No to 73-78" Rally" at Pershing Square in downtown Los Angeles, CA.

HHS Secretary Michael Leavitt discusses pandemic preparedness at the National Press Club in Washington, DC at 12:30 pm ET.

The "Out of Iraq" congressional caucus will hold a 9:30 am ET press conference in the House Radio and TV gallery to thank American soldiers for their service, to honor those who have died while serving in Iraq, and to encourage other members of Congress and the President to "bring our soldiers home."

Justice Scalia keynotes the American Spectator annual dinner at the Hotel Monaco in Washington, DC.

"Friends of Hillary" communications adviser Ann Lewis addresses the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at St. Anselm College in Manchester, NH.

Former Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) speaks on poverty at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.

The Fitzgerald investigation:

In the blockbuster lede of the day, the Washington Post's VandeHei and Leonnig report that the prosecutor in the CIA leak investigation is "expected to announce a final decision on charges in the two-year long probe tomorrow [Friday], according to people familiar with the case." LINK

In one of your Thursday must-reads, GOP advisers tell Doyle McManus of the Los Angeles Times that the President's plan for dealing with the fallout of indictments amounts to this: "Keep the problem at arm's length, let allies outside the White House do the talking, and try to change the subject to something -- anything -- else." LINK

Be sure to Note one unnamed White House official's look ahead at how this might play out with the political calendar being what it is for the next few weeks, Grover Norquist on Karl Rove's name ID, and Ken Duberstein on how to revive a second term.

The Wall Street Journal's Anne Marie Squeo reports that Fitzgerald's 45-minute meeting with Judge Thomas Hogan yesterday may be significant because "prosecutors need to hand up indictments to a judge before they are sealed or publicly released."

The Journal Notes that it is expected that "any indictments will be very detailed and discuss the involvement of other White House officials who aren't charged."

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