The absence of a candidate in the 2008 presidential contest "will spare the White House the trials of a campaign, easing the tensions between governing priorities and election imperatives that traditionally tear at the institution," writes the Washington Post's Peter Baker "Yet, at the same time, it means that no one will be making the case for the Bush legacy as 2008 nears." LINK
Helen Kennedy and David Saltonstall of the New York Daily News wrap the latest three Quinnipiac University polls from the key battleground states Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida and write of a possible Giuliani vs. Clinton general election -- which for New York tabloid writers is pretty much hitting the jackpot. LINK
Peggy Noonan writes poetically about the same matchup -- but doesn't realize that Hillary R. Clinton used to shop for her own groceries in Little Rock. LINK
Broadcasters are "licking their chops" as large states move their primaries up and campaign ads hit the airwaves earlier than in any presidential election. Jessica Holzer of The Hill has the story. LINK
2008: the money trail:
Tom Hamburger of the Los Angeles Times looks at the art of bundling contributions and whether or not the major presidential candidates are planning on disclosing the names of their top money collectors. LINK
Note the nuanced Edwards and McCain answers.
The AP has a report on the debate over the economic gains that a national political convention brings to a city. Denver organizers are hoping that the 2008 DNC convention will bring in as much as $200 million. LINK
2008: Republicans: McCain:
Dan Nowicki of the Arizona Republic writes this morning that Sen. John McCain's biggest vulnerability is his tough stances on key issues, which could turn him off to voters. LINK
Refusing to offer a presidential endorsement, Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN) declared his support for McCain supporter Gov. Tim Pawlenty for vice president, reports Brady Averill of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. LINK
2008: Republicans: Romney:
The Hotline's Marc Ambinder looks at Romney's "journey to the right" for National Journal's cover story. LINK
While visiting Ames, Iowa, Gov. Romney touted energy independence, the Des Moines Register reports. LINK
Gov. Romney tells the AP he supports President Bush and he doesn't think it will hurt his 2008 chances. " 'I think politically, the pundits would tell you you should get as far away from the president as you can, you should establish a different view, you should say it is wrong," said Romney, who is set to formally enter the presidential race next week. "That may well be the political right thing to do, but it just happens to be the wrong thing to do.' " LINK
In an op-ed for the Union Leader, Kathleen Parker defends Romney against charges of flip flopping. LINK
The Boston Herald's Howie Carr is not so charitable. LINK
The Wall Street Journal's Wirey John Harwood reports that Romney is proposing an extension of Bush's tax cuts rather than offering his own new ones.
2008: Republicans: Giuliani:
For CQ, Rachel Kapochunas looks at Giuliani's potential vulnerabilities on social issues. LINK
The Wall Street Journal's Wirey John Harwood highlights Giuliani's meeting with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-CA).
2008: Republicans: Gingrich:
Gingrich said Thursday that if "October feels like a vacuum" he'll run for president, the Naples Daily News' Charlie Whitehead reports. LINK