The Wall Street Journal reports that drug companies are pouring millions of dollars into close midterm races, giving some Republicans a financial edge out of fear of what a Democratic Congress could cost their interests. House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi has already promised that the Democrats will rewrite the prescription-drug benefit to take away most of the advantages it handed to pharmaceutical companies within the first 100 days of a Democratic House. Through early September, drug-company PACs have given about $8.7 million to campaigns, compared with $7 million for all of 2002, according to Center for Responsible Politics. Employee contributions are up, too, rising to about $5 million from $3.3 million in 2002. About 69% of the industry's campaign contributions are going to Republicans.
Michael J. Fox's stem cell ad:
In her New York Times "TV Watch," Alessandra Stanley seems to place the Michael J. Fox stem cell ad in the pantheon with the LBJ "Daisy" ad, Willie Horton, and the wolves of 2004. LINK
Jim Rutenberg of the New York Times has the scorecard. LINK
Andrea Stone of USA Today on Rush Limbaugh versus Michael J. Fox. LINK
Per the Washington Times' Greg Pierce, a new ad scheduled to run in Missouri characterizes the Michael J. Fox ad as misleading, using St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan, who is scheduled to pitch in the World Series tonight, "warning voters that the ballot initiative would legalize human cloning. 'Don't be deceived,' he says. Former St. Louis Rams quarterback Kurt Warner, who led the team to a Super Bowl victory, says, 'Don't be tricked' into thinking that stem-cell research will bring any cures within the next 15 years. The ad is introduced and ended by actor Jim Caviezel, who portrayed Jesus in 'The Passion of the Christ.'" LINK
Ian Bishop of the New York Post reports the ad has had over one million views on You Tube. LINK
Bush Administration agenda:
The Washington Post's Peter Baker looks in must-read fashion at White House efforts to woo the base and has Republican pollster Frank Luntz, who gave up politics years ago, saying, "I've given up on 2006" and starting to worry about 2008. LINK
President Bush scores the wood of the New York Post today with his line about Democrats "measuring the drapes," which the Post's Ian Bishop describes as a "veiled slap" at Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). LINK
The New York Times' Sheryl Gay Stolberg writes up how the White House and Republican strategists plan to deploy President Bush in the closing two weeks of the campaign. LINK
"One Republican strategist close to the White House, granted anonymity to speak candidly about campaign strategy, said some Republicans -- among them Senate candidates in tight races in Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Tennessee -- simply do not want their final campaign images to include Mr. Bush, and have spurned White House offers for help."
"Instead, White House strategists are sending Mr. Bush to Republican-leaning districts like Sarasota, where he can help energize the base and increase voter turnout. The president will also appear in swing districts where the Republican candidate has calculated that the last-minute infusion of cash he can bring in is worth more than any bad publicity surrounding the visit."
"Bush welcome to raise cash, but not pictures and no press," reads the headline on a front page Washington Times story by Joseph Curl. LINK