The Note: Not a Snip, Not a Bite

"Illegal immigration is the key issue in the race, and should [Cannon loose], look for House Republicans to dig in their heels and block any bill that creates a path to citizenship for illegal aliens. 'House Republicans are already spooked about immigration, and should one of our own lose on the issue, you will see panic break out,' one GOP congressman told me."

USA Today's Susan Page reviews the polling data on immigration and points out the difficulty facing the immigration conference committee: Americans fall into "four cluster" on immigration that are "roughly equal in size but vary dramatically in point of view," and a "compromise that 50% of the population can go for leaves half the public feeling unhappy, and very unhappy." LINK

Hillary Clinton:

In a wide-ranging and must-read assessment of Sen. Clinton's governing philosophy, the Washington Post's Dan Balz plays it straight down the middle, and suggests the Senator often does too, but not always. LINK

Balz writes that Sen. Clinton made it clear in an interview that her governing philosophy may never be easily reduce to a slogan.

Asked whether there is anything that connects her different interests and positions, Sen. Clinton told Balz: "What's framed all the work I've done in the Senate and all the years before that is my belief that our most important obligation is to take care of our children . . . and that as a nation, America should remain as a symbol of freedom and hope around the world."

On "Good Morning America," ABC News' Jake Tapper had Donna Brazile saying, "Upstate New York is like Middle America, they're the voters she needs to win," while Nora Walcott, the executive director of the Democratic Party in Greene County, MO, said, "We really do need a nominee, I think, who can appeal to those moderate Republican voters, those independents. And I am just not personally sure that Sen. Clinton is that candidate."

Despite efforts on the part of Sen. Clinton to moderate her image, Tapper cited a new ABC News poll which shows that 42 percent of Americans say they would never vote for her. But the poll also shows voters rate Clinton as "strong," which ain't a bad thing in this day and age.

Dave Saltonstall of the New York Daily News looks at some Democratic clubs in Manhattan which have voted to endorse Sen. Clinton's little-known anti-war Democratic opponent or to not endorse at all as examples of Sen. Clinton's potential problem wooing liberal anti-war Democrats to her reelection effort. LINK

Al Gore:

Al Gore capped his red carpet week with the New York Times' Adam Nagourney believing him that he doesn't intend to seek the presidency in 2008. LINK

Note question: if Nagourney and The Note believe Gore, shouldn't you?

Time magazine's Karen Tumulty reports that in recent weeks, Gore has been "quietly telephoning some of his biggest fund raisers and telling them to feel free to sign on with other potential candidates. And he wants them to put out the word, instructing, 'Tell everybody I'm not running.' LINK

Tumulty Notes, however, that Gore is positioned "better than just about anyone else to tap the enormous, near instant fund-raising potential of the Internet should he choose to, considering the following he has generated among bloggers and with the Net-based political organization MoveOn.org.

Jefferson and separation of powers:

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