THE NOTE: Does Nobel Win Push Gore Toward ’08?


Add Dick Armey to the list of Republicans who are convinced 2008 is Hillary's year. "I don't see any way that Hillary Clinton won't be president," the former House majority leader, R-Texas, tells Anjeanette Damon of the Reno Gazette-Journal. "She is more well-organized, she is more intelligent. . . I don't admire her. But I don't discount her ability. She is ruthless and she is tough."

Gov. Bill Richardson, D-N.M., unveiled his education plan yesterday in New Hampshire, and "chided other Democrats for offering 'timid' ideas that he says fail to help American schools," per the Concord Monitor's Meg Heckman.

"Just as they trusted George Bush on the Iraq war and the Patriot Act, they trusted him on No Child Left Behind," Richardson said of his opponents. "Sen. Hillary Clinton says reform it. I also have two words for No Child Left Behind: Scrap it."

More Bernie Kerik distractions for Giuliani: "Bernard Kerik's legal nightmare is about to get worse, with federal prosecutors expected to file charges against the former police commissioner that will likely include allegations of bribery, tax fraud and obstruction of justice," Greg B. Smith reports in the New York Daily News.

The Nation's Ari Berman looks at Giuliani's money connections -- and the important role of Bracewell & Giuliani in his campaign.

"Partner Giuliani wanted to become President Giuliani. He needed money and, more important, political connections," Berman writes. "Bracewell offered a gateway into the lavish world of Texas Republican fundraising and easy access to the same titans of industry who had helped make the Bush family rich and propelled W. into the White House. The former mayor of one of the bluest cities in the country had just inked a whole lot of red."

Romney could be in line to unite social conservatives -- but that's a big "could," Time's Nancy Gibbs and Michael Duffy write. "It is too soon to know if most of the nation's 50 million evangelicals will take the cue and give Romney a closer look," they write. "But the evangelical voters are one of the few real prizes in the Republican primary campaign -- and one that Romney, who has stumbled a bit of late and trails both Giuliani and Thompson in many polls, could sorely use."

Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., outlined his healthcare plan on Thursday.

Per ABC's Bret Hovell, the plan "is designed to create a competitive health care market that rewards positive medical outcomes, provides tax credits to individuals who have health insurance, and to institute a sense of personal responsibility into all levels of the health care system."

McCain would also change Bush administration policy and allow drug reimportation from Canada.

So you don't want to play with us? What if we MAKE you play?

Most of the Democratic candidates (save Clinton and Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn.) filed papers to get themselves off the Michigan primary ballot, but Michigan lawmakers won't take no for an answer.

"Michigan leaders of both political parties are considering legislation that would place the names of four boycotting Democratic candidates back on the Jan. 15 primary ballot," write the Detroit News' Gordon Trowbridge and Charlie Cain.

Said Debbie Dingell, a Michigan representative on the Democratic National Committee: "We have to be prepared to play hardball."

On Sunday, ABC's George Stephanopoulos sits down with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., on "This Week."

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