The Note: The Note

Per the Wall Street Journal's Rogers and Mullins, House GOPers are weighting limits on the money that flows to 527 groups. Melding the lobbying and 527 issues could make it harder to win Democratic support in the House. But it could give Republicans "greater leverage in persuading their members to accept new restrictions on travel and entertainment perks now arranged by lobbyists."

And be sure to Note the Sensenbrenner/Team Blunt narrative.

Politics of surveillance:

Carol Leonnig's Washington Post write-up of Sen. Feingold's letter to Gonzales suggests that she agrees that Gonzales misled the committee a year ago. LINK

Boston Globe columnist Peter Canellos wisely looks at the terms of the debate swirling around the NSA warrantless wiretapping program and writes of the President's insistence to define that debate as one about values. LINK

"By framing the issue in terms of values -- by answering 'why' instead of 'what," ''when,' or 'how'-- Bush chokes off any serious discussion of policy choices and tradeoffs. He leaves his critics arguing on an entirely different plane, which is both infuriating to them and confusing to voters."

Bush Administration:

Bush taps Edward Lazear, a Stanford University business professor, to become chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers. LINK


Rob Hotakainen of the Sacramento Bee chronicles the early visits of 2008 hopefuls to Iowa and the kind words they have for the Hawkeye State. LINK

New Hampshire:

Robert Danderson, Republican mayor of Berlin, New Hampshire, has declared he will challenge Rep. Charlie Bass (R-NH) for the state's District 2 congressional seat, reports the Union Leader's Lorna Colquhoun. LINK


Roll Call's Paul Kane writes up the PAC and campaign committee filings of several 2008 presidential hopefuls with a keen eye toward Sen. Frist's disbursements.

2008: Republicans:

Republicans in Michigan and Washington State are looking to "bar non-Republicans from voting in their primaries in 2008, which would make it even more difficult for" Sen. McCain to win the nomination should he run in two years, Peter Savodnik of The Hill reports. LINK

On morning network television, Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN) placed the danger posed by Iran at an "8" on a scale of one to ten with ten representing the greatest threat.

On Friday, C-SPAN will air Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's (R-TN) remarks to the Rockingham County Republican Committee's Lincoln-Reagan dinner in Hampstead, NH live at 7:45 pm ET.

2008: Democrats:

Gov. Tom Vilsack (D-IA) warned fellow Democrats against voicing opposition to President Bush's wiretapping program unless they can demonstrate the program jeopardizes Americans' civil liberties, according to the Des Moines Register's Thomas Beaumont. LINK

"If the president broke the law, that's unacceptable. But I think it's debatable whether he did," said Vilsack.

Dean's Democrats:

February will mark the end of Josh Earnest's well-regarded tenure as spokesguy for the DNC. Earnest is heading south to the Sunshine State to become gubernatorial candidate Jim Davis' communications director. DNC communications director Karen Finney says, "We're going to really miss Josh, he's a very talented, hard working guy, and the Davis campaign is very lucky to have him joining their team. . . Governor Dean and all of us are grateful to Josh for his leadership and his contribution to the team, and we wish him all the best. "


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