The Note: February Sanity

The Washington Times' Amy Fagan on House leaders seeking options on NCLB. LINK

2008: Republicans:

Politico's Jonathan Martin: "I posed the question -- is homosexuality immoral -- to representatives of all three of the top Republican candidates. None answered it directly." LINK

The Boston Globe's James Pindell reports on a survey by Franklin Pierce College showing a tight three-way race in the New Hampshire GOP primary. LINK

Pindell writes, "The poll found McCain with 29 percent, Giuliani with 28 percent and Romney with 22 percent."

2008: Republicans: McCain:

On "Good Morning America," ABC News' Jake Tapper reported from aboard the "Straight Talk Express" and said that although McCain's campaign appears to be more cautious and somber this time around, McCain is still far more accessible to reporters than any of his rivals from either party.

You can get more of Jake's reporting from the Hawkeye State here: LINK

Tapper reports from Sen. McCain's Mason City, IA press avail last night, "Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., does NOT call for Attorney General Alberto Gonzales's resignation, but indicates the AG should testify before Congress and suggests that Karl Rove should testify, though he backs off from that almost immediately."

"McCain said 'it's very appropriate for Attorney General Gonzales and anyone else involved to appear before a hearing.' Asked if that included Rove, the Senator said, 'You get into this executive privilege issue, but I think they'd have to make a case for that. . . I think both sides probably have to cooperate on this issue, but I don't know exactly the relationship nor do I know how much there was involvement or non-involvement by Mr. Rove, so I would be careful about it.'"

"McCain also says he does not believe that 'politics should ever play a role' in firing US Attorneys."

McCain fired up the Straight Talk Express, but despite all the prep work the road ahead looks a bit bumpy, the New York Times' Nagourney reports. "As he began what was supposed to be a triumphant day with his first bus trip across Iowa on Thursday, he was instead faced with a sense among some Republicans that his campaign had faltered in the early going and that his political identity had been blurred rather than enhanced by his efforts to position himself as first in line for the nomination." LINK

Sen. McCain said Thursday that California's leap to near the front of the nominating calendar only stands to increase the significance of Iowa's leadoff caucuses, reports the Des Moines Register's Tom Beaumont. LINK

"'I may be wrong, but this even emphasizes the importance of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina,' McCain told reporters Thursday."

In an interview, Sen. McCain told the Des Moines Register that there is an "overwhelming majority of Americans, including Republicans, who feel that we need to have a comprehensive approach and realize you can't simply deport 12 million people. They don't want anyone rewarded for illegal behavior."

"But that is exactly what the proposal McCain introduced last year and is reworking this year does, Onawa Republican Dick Schlitter said."

"Pretty dang sweet" is how a high school basketball player described his meeting with Sen. McCain on the floor of the Iowa Senate, reports the Quad City Times. LINK

Scott Goldberg of Minneapolis' KARE News reports on Gov. Tim Pawlenty's (R-MN) downplaying of his vice presidential prospects as he stumped with Sen. McCain in Iowa. LINK

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