SNEAK PEEK: : ‘It’s a Low Bar’


Making a taped appearance Monday on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," Barack Obama impressed the show's host by getting down to Beyonce's "Crazy In Love."

"It's a low bar," said Obama after DeGeneres called him the best dancer in the presidential field.

But whether Obama can impress those covering Tuesday's debate in Philadelphia is an open question.

The Dust-Up at Drexel is the Illinois Democrat's first debate since telling the New York Times that he would be, in the words of The Page, "Obambi No More."


Obama took a baby step Monday beyond Kumbaya Politics while participating in a "dialogue" with young voters sponsored by MTV and MySpace.

He pointed not only to Social Security but also to Iraq, Iran, and torture as differences with Hillary Clinton, adding, "We are not going to be able to solve those problems if we don't talk about them honestly."

The Clinton campaign indirectly pushed back on Social Security Monday with a new ad in Iowa and New Hampshire which does not mention Obama by name but does end with a narrator asking "which candidate has been there for you all along?"

Tuesday's two-hour Democratic debate, which gets underway on MSNBC at 9:00 pm ET with questions coming from Brian Williams and Tim Russert, is the fourth DNC-sanctioned debate and the first without Mike Gravel who did not meet criteria for participation established by NBC.

As for the Republicans, Rudy Giuliani gets an opportunity to step up his anti-mandate health-care message Tuesday when he participates in a conference call with the small business owners who belong to the National Federation of Independent Businesses.

The conference call comes as Giuliani is facing charges of fuzzy math. LINK

Per ABC's Rick Klein, "To hear Rudy Giuliani describe it in his new radio ad, the British medical system is a scary place. . . . But the data Giuliani cites [about prostate cancer survival rates in the U.S. as compared to the U.K.] comes from a single study published eight years ago by a not-for-profit group, and is contradicted by official data from the British government."

According to Giuliani's spokeswoman, the campaign did not attempt to independently verify the statistics used in the ad. Giuliani got the statistic from a summer 2007 City Journal article written by David Gratzer, a Giuliani adviser who is also a physician and senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute.

"The citation is an article in a highly respected intellectual journal written by an expert at a highly respected think tank which the mayor read because he is an intellectually engaged human being," Giuliani spokeswoman Maria Comella told ABC's Klein.

For his part, Mitt Romney raises coin in New York and Chicago. On Monday, Romney was endorsed by New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg. He also (once again) compared Clinton's experience level to that of an intern in an interview with FNC's "Hannity & Colmes."


On the House of Labor front, A.F.S.C.M.E.'s search committee meets in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday. The search committee's report will then go to AFSCME's international executive board which will make a final determination regarding a presidential endorsement on Wednesday.

If the public employees union does make an endorsement, signs point to Clinton.LINK

Out in Burbank, Calif., Ron Paul gets his moment on Jay Leno's couch when he appears on NBC's "Tonight Show."

(Also appearing: Tom Cruise and The Sex Pistols).

Schedule details:


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