The Note: Reasoning Adroitly and Speciously . . .

Tom Kean Jr., the Republican challenging Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), denounced Rush Limbaugh's Tuesday for belittling Michael J. Fox who suffers from Parkinson's disease.

Kean maintains that he supports stem cell research without restriction, but his critics claim he is playing both sides of the issue. In May, acting as a State Senator he voted against a bill to spend $250 million to build three stem cell and biomedical research centers in the state. Kean said his vote was because of NJ's dire financial situation and he later supported a bill that would allow the spending if voters approved it in a November referendum.

Sen. Menendez and Kean, Jr. are beginning to soften the tone of their race and show a softer, more personal side of themselves, reports David Chen of the New York Times. LINK

2006: Senate: Montana:

Without citing the poll or its results, the New York Post's Ian Bishop writes a story of a poll showing a Conrad Burns resurgence under the headline, "Comeback In Montana." LINK

The Weekly Standard's Matthew Continetti sees Tester's strength in Montana as "one more sign that the Democratic party is growing in the West." LINK

2006: Senate: Pennsylvania:

The Wall Street Journal's story looking at pharmaceutical giving Notes that Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), who was a leading proponent of the 2003 Medicare law, has been the biggest beneficiary of the pharmaceutical industry's largest, receiving almost $500,000 from pharmaceutical interests and their employees, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, $150,000 more than the next closest politician.

Sen. Santorum has a new ad up called "Baltic Avenue." It features Casey's face next to Kim Jong Il, a mushroom cloud and Ahmedinijad at different parts of the ad. You can view the ad here: LINK

2006: Senate: Connecticut:

Jennifer Medina of the New York Times writes a lengthy correction reporting Sen. Lieberman (D-CT) has indeed used the term "stay the course." LINK

The Courant also reports that Ned Lamont made a "fiery" speech yesterday about Iraq, adding a "new twist," writes Elizabeth Hamilton. Lamont compared Sen. Lieberman to Richard Nixon. LINK

2006: Senate: Florida:

A new Quinnipiac University poll out this morning shows Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) walloping his opponent Rep. Katherine Harris (R-FL) 64 percent to 29 percent. The poll also shows President Bush has a 36 percent approval rating in the Sunshine State and Florida voters say they prefer to have Democrats control Congress instead of Republicans by a margin of 52 to 35 percent.

The Schwarzenegger Era:

Besides the letter about global warming that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA) sent to the White House yesterday, the Republican incumbent hoping for re-election recently appeared at a black church to describe his struggle with national leadership over global warming and reliance on Mideast oil. It's all an effort to show his independence, write Michael Finnegan and Scott Martelle of the Los Angeles Times. LINK

Democratic agenda:

Apparently former Rep. Liz Holtzman (D-NY) and Leader Pelosi are not on the same page when it comes to impeaching President Bush. LINK

The Hill's Jim Snyder has former House Majority Leader Richard Gephardt (D-MO) predicting fewer legislative changes than expected should Democrats take the House. LINK

2008: Republicans:

GOP fundraiser and former Karl Rove aide Margaret Hoover has joined Rudy Giuliani's PAC, reports the New York Daily News. LINK

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