"Radical," "wrong-headed," and "major blow," are just some of the words that Democratic '08ers have already used to describe Thursday's Supreme Court decision that schools cannot use race to decide where students attend class.
The decision's impact on Thursday's debate will likely be to underscore the ways in which the Democrats agree with one another.
Sure, Barack Obama can point to the brief he filed in the case. Joe Biden can invoke his antics against Roberts and Alito. John Edwards can frame his plan for a million housing vouchers as a strategy for integrating schools. And Hillary Clinton can always pull out her "I actually think Bill Clinton was a pretty good president" line.
But with no contrarian figure to offer a dissenting note, Thursday's ruling may lead most of the debate coverage to focus on areas of agreement: namely, the ways in which all of them would use their power of appointment to steer the Supreme Court in a different direction.
Thursday's 90-minute debate, which takes place at Howard University, gets underway at 9:00 pm ET. PBS' Tavis Smiley serves as moderator with questions also coming from NPR's Michel Martin, columnist Ruben Navarrette, Jr., and USA Today's DeWayne Wickham.
Smiley, who told the Washington Post's Anne Kornblut that he has probed whether candidate Clinton has "a soul," promises to focus on a range of domestic issues which were originally outlined in The Covenant with Black America. LINK
Read excerpts from the Covenant here: LINK
Once the debate is done with, it's back to the eleventh hour money chase as the June 30 end of the second quarter closes in on the '08ers.
Among the Democrats, Clinton heads to Florida for fundraise in Jacksonville and Miami.
Obama, who enjoys the support of R.T. Rybak, the mayor of Minneapolis and a proud Dean Democrat, has a 4:30 pm ET campaign rally and a 6:30 pm ET fundraiser in the Land of Ten Thousand Lakes. LINK
Flush with so-called "Coulter cash," Edwards raises money in Lexington Ky., before heading to the Sunshine State for additional fundraising.
Bill Richardson is spending Friday raising money in El Paso, Texas, and Las Cruces, N.M.
Among the Republicans, Mitt Romney has a 12:00 pm ET fundraiser in Washington DC, before heading to Des Moines, Iowa, for a 5:30 pm ET fundraiser. His wife, Ann Romney, attends a 3:00 pm ET fundraiser for her husband in California.
One day after immigration reform went down to defeat in the Senate, John McCain heads to Illinois and Arizona on Friday to raise money. With a "steady strain" subject line, McCain sent an e-mail to supporters on Thursday which said that he has "always believed a 'steady strain' is essential not only at sea, but in life as well."
Rudy Giuliani has a 3:00 pm ET fundraiser in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. (Earlier in the day, he picks up a 12:15 pm ET endorsement in Irvine, Calif.).
Tom Tancredo raises coin in Iowa while Jim Gilmore does it in Roanoke, Va.
Rather than raising money, Duncan Hunter will be in Florida speaking to a Republican presidential candidates' forum being held by the National Association of Latino Elected Officials.