There are still over two weeks until Gen. David Petraeus delivers his report to Congress on Iraq. But the debate in Washington and on the campaign trail continues to be hot and tomorrow could mark another chance for the 08-ers to distinguish themselves from their rivals on the issue.
One day after President Bush found an Iraq/Vietnam comparison that he can agree with (and clarified that "misreporting" of his seemingly weakening support of Prime Minister Maliki), the Director of National Intelligence will release the update to the Iraq National Intelligence Estimate Thursday afternoon, reports ABC News' Luis Martinez.
The updated NIE also follows the Wednesday launch of a $15 million campaign by a new conservative non-profit, Freedom's Watch. The group has launched a TV ad campaign in 20 states targeting both Republicans and Democrats members of Congress who "most likely to be undecided or potentially switch their votes on Iraq," the group's spokesman Ari Fleischer told ABC News today.
Freedom's Watch will have some competition on the airwaves as anti-war groups go up with their own media campaign which could top $30 million and targets Republicans vulnerable on Iraq. LINK
On the campaign trail with the Democrats…
Hillary Clinton gives a 1:00 pm ET policy address on health care quality in Lebanon New Hampshire.
If you're Team Romney you've got to think this nicely tees up your own health care rollout Friday in Florida. Prediction: There will be one or more references to "Hillarycare" in the Romney address Friday. We will put the over/under at 4 and start taking wagers.
(The NFL kicks off in just 15 days – we promise to limit our political wager jokes at that point.)
After her policy speech, Clinton visits MainStreet Bookends in Warner before heading to house parties in Concord and Manchester.
Barack Obama is in South Carolina for a visit to JV Martin Middle School in Dillion where he takes part in a 1:30 pm ET roundtable. He's off to a 6:00 pm ET rally in Conway after that.
TiVo alert! Obama appears tonight with Jon Stewart on Comedy Central's "Daily Show."
Busy day for the Edwards family as it kicks off its "Fighting For One America" bus tour en mass, including eldest daughter Cate who will be blogging from the bus. The tour includes a full day of town hall meetings in New Hampshire. Up first is a 10:30 am ET stop at Dartmouth College in Hanover followed by a 1:30 pm ET town hall in Keene a 4:00 pm ET town hall in Peterborough and one last one in Hooksett at 6:30 pm ET. Press avails follow each of the town halls. (The campaign has dusted off the tried and true "major speech" billing as the kickoff to the Granite State tour.)
Bill Richardson, Dennis Kucinich and Mike Gravel participate in the 5:30 pm ET "Prez on the Rez" presidential forum in Cabazon Calif., sponsored by the Native American organization, INDN.
After that, it's a jam-packed day for Richardson, who continues to campaign in Las Vegas, attending a 12:00 pm ET rally with the local culinary 226 negotiating team at their headquarters.