The Note: Focused on Winning

Robert Pear of the New York Times writes of a meeting some politically connected pharmacists from Texas had with Karl Rove last week to explain the trouble the new Medicare prescription drug benefit is causing them. LINK

Americans United, formerly Americans United for Social Security, will use the infrastructure built under their previous moniker to fight President Bush's Medicare prescription drug benefit, reports Roll Call's Tory Newmyer

Politics of immigration:

San Francisco Chronicle's Bob Egelko writes that Sen. Arlen Specter's (R-PA) proposal to send all future immigration appeals to a DC court in order to make immigration laws uniform does not bode well with the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, which hears about half of the nation's immigration appeals. LINK

Abortion politics:

In the current issue of Newsweek, Howard Fineman and Evan Thomas deliver an important look at how the debate surrounding the South Dakota abortion law is not necessarily one Republicans are embracing. LINK

(If you thought you knew Sen. Allen's stance on the South Dakota bill after reading Dick Wadhams' comments to The Hotline, be sure to read this piece because you may be in for a surprise). LINK

An AP-Ipsos poll reveals most Americans fall in the murky middle on abortion, where three-fifths believe abortion should be legal under certain circumstances LINK

The Schwarzenegger Era:

"Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA) asked legislative leaders to meet with him Monday in a last-ditch effort to put the largest public works borrowing measure in California history before voters in June," writes the AP. LINK

2006:

Roll Call's Morton Kondracke reports that Democrats will begin laying down an alternative to the GOP agenda this week, beginning with major budget proposals in the Senate.

Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-CA) announced he would not seek an 11th term minutes before California's filing deadline, leaving no other prominent Republican on the ballot, reports Peter Savodnik for the Hill on Sunday. LINK

After Karl Rove, it's time for Vice President Dick Cheney to "shake the money tree" for his party in South Carolina on Friday, writes Wayne Washington of The State. LINK

Fred Dicker of the New York Post reports former Yonkers Mayor John Spencer may be poised to receive New York State GOP Chair Stephen Minarik's endorsement this week. LINK

"Forgoing bickering among themselves," the three main Iowa Democratic gubernatorial candidates Mike Blouin, Chet Culver and Ed Fallon took turns in pounding Republican rival Jim Nussle on Saturday, writes Bret Dalmer in the Sunday Des Moines Register. LINK

Message to all gubernatorial candidates for Massachusetts: Take Note of the 54 percent of voters surveyed who said in today's Boston Globe they would more likely vote for a candidate who supports allowing gays and lesbians to adopt children. LINK

The State's Lee Bandy wrote on Sunday that Gov. Mark Sanford's (R-SC) reelection $4.5 million will enable his campaign to be "laden heavily with TV ads and little contact with voters," seeing that "Sanford is not a people person." LINK

Politics:

The Washington Post profiles political insider Michael Berman, whose struggle with weight is the focus of his self-help/memoir book to be released this week. The publication focuses on the political campaigner/ lobbyist's everyday life struggles of working in Washington and the effects on his health and weight. LINK

Week ahead:

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