The Note: Credit Where Credit Is Due

President Bush meets with local officials from Louisiana at 3:25 pm ET and with the president of Yemen at 11:25 am ET. He signs the agriculture appropriations bill at 4:00 pm ET and honors the arts and humanities during a 10:05 am ET medal ceremony and during a 7:00 pm ET dinner. Earlier today, President Bush called King Abdullah to express his condolences.

Sen. John McCain delivers 12:30 pm ET remarks at the American Enterprise Institute on "Winning the War in Iraq."

Sen. Hillary Clinton takes part in a bipartisan effort to "salvage" $125 million for sick and injured 9/11 responders at 11:00 am ET in Dirksen 430. New York's Junior Senator delivers 12:15 pm ET remarks to the ABA's International Rule of Law Symposium at the Capital Hilton.

Leader Pelosi has her regular briefing scheduled for 2:00 pm ET in H-206.

The Senate reconvenes at 9:30 am ET and resumes consideration of the Defense Authorization bill.

The House meets at 10:00 am ET to consider the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005. There's lots hanging in the balance here still.

Karen Hughes appears before the House International Relations Committee for an around-the-world review of public diplomacy at 10:00 am ET.

A House Judiciary subcommittee holds a hearing on "How Illegal Immigration Impacts Constituencies."

Sen. Sam Brownback's (R-KS) Senate Judiciary subcommittee on the Constitution holds a hearing on "Why the Government Should Care About Pornography: The State Interest in Protecting Children and Families." Pamela Paul, author of "Pornified," testifies.

As promised on Tuesday night, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger will meet privately with legislative leaders from both parties in Sacramento at 11:00 am ET.

Dow Jones/General Electric:

John Harwood's powerful lede in his WSJ/NBC poll write-up: "Republicans, wincing from losses in two governors' races this week and President Bush's current political weakness, face a broader problem as well: Some of the party's most potent traditional advantages appear to be eroding." LINK

More Harwood: "Among other findings, the poll indicates that voters no longer prefer Republicans to Democrats on handling taxes, cutting government spending, dealing with immigration and directing foreign policy."

And from the pollster: "'There's a kind of pall in terms of the American mood,' says Republican pollster Bill McInturff, who conducts the Journal/NBC poll with Democratic counterpart Peter Hart. 'It's a very unhappy electorate that's going to be very unstable....for a Republican majority.'"

2005: post-mortem analysis:

The Washington Post's wise Dan Balz writes, ". . .Tuesday's results confirmed that nothing happened to alter a political climate that now tilts against the GOP and that the President remains in the midst of a slump." LINK

Balz goes on to Note Kaine's success in Virginia in talking about his personal faith as appealing to swing voters and a lesson for the Democratic Party at large.

Ron Brownstein offers these somewhat soothing words to Republicans who are still stinging: "the best news in Tuesday's election may have been that more was not at stake." He zeroes in on the day's most telling loss: that of St. Paul, Minnesota's Democratic mayor Randy Kelly, whose trouncing was seen as punishment for his endorsement of Bush last year. LINK

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