The Note: With No Apologies to Bill Safire

More from Newsweek: "One source close to the White House, who spoke anonymously in order to keep his job, believes President George W. Bush has decided to wait until after Dec. 29 'as a personal gesture to Rumsfeld.' On that date Rumsfeld would become the longest-serving Defense secretary, beating Robert McNamara's record of 85 months."

After playing a key role in the passage of legislation which strips Guantanamo detainees and other enemy combatants from filing writes of habeas corpus, Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) tells the New Yorker's Jeffrey Toobin that he hopes the courts will restore those rights. LINK

A Democratic Senate staffer tells Toobin, "We make fun of Specter, but we're basically leaving it up to the Courts, too."


Tom Beaumont of the Des Moines Register wrote on Sunday of the seamless transition from the 2006 midterms to the 2008 Iowa caucuses. Be sure to Note the Bayh and Pataki planned Iowa stops for next week. LINK

In a Sunday Chicago Tribune op-ed, US News & World Report's Dan Gilgoff explored the narrowing of the God gap for Democrats in 2006 and what he sees as the party's need "to step up its nascent faith offensive" if it hopes to build on the recent electoral success for 2008. LINK

2008: Republicans:

Rounding out his stellar 2008 coverage in Sunday's Des Moines Register, Tom Beaumont reported that Saturday Aug. 11, 2007, is the date of the key Iowa Republican Party Ames straw poll. LINK

David Broder in the Washington Post and Mike Allen in Time take serviceable (but mostly newsless) looks at Mitt Romney for president. LINK and LINK

Also check out Joan Vennochi from the Boston Globe (for some of Romney's past apparently pro-gay actions) and The State's Lee Bandy, who has McCain adviser Richard Quinn saying that it's "good news" for the Arizona Senator that Warren Tompkins has signed on with Gov. Romney since Tompkins, in Bandy's words, "was generally recognized as the architect behind Bush's hard-hitting campaign in S.C. in 2000." LINK and LINK

Emma Ratliff of the Boston Herald reported Sunday on Gov. Mitt Romney's allegedly stingy Bay State record on donating to fellow Republican candidates. LINK

While appearing on "This Week with George Stephanopoulos," Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) said he believes "there is room, on the Republican side, for somebody that's full-scale conservative, that's an economic and fiscal and social conservative."

While not confirming that he would seek the 2008 presidential bid, Sen. Brownback did say that he's "very close with announcements."

Without mentioning Sen. McCain by name, Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE) rejected the call for more troops in Iraq in a Sunday Washington Post op-ed. LINK

"The time for more U.S. troops in Iraq has passed. We do not have more troops to send and, even if we did, they would not bring a resolution to Iraq. Militaries are built to fight and win wars, not bind together failing nations. We are once again learning a very hard lesson in foreign affairs: America cannot impose a democracy on any nation -- regardless of our noble purpose."

The Washington Times' Stephen Dinan writes up Rep. Duncan Hunter's (R-CA) presidential bid (candidate interview included) and his plan to rebuild the "blue collar coalition" that proved victorious for the Republican Party during the Reagan years. LINK

2008: Democrats:

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