The Democratic debate in Las Vegas tonight just may be the most-anticipated showdown the city has since the Mayweather-De La Hoya fight in May and features almost as much pre-event build-up and hype as that boxing match did.
What can we say about the Dust Up in the Desert that hasn't already been said?
It's a big night for Hillary Clinton, who needs a boffo performance to make up for her perceived stumble in Philadelphia two weeks ago and a series of stories (tipping, planting, piling on) that have opened the door for questions of her inevitability. Her rivals are likely to come out swinging but this time Clinton is prepared to fight back and throw a few jabs of her own.
It's no secret the Clinton camp was not happy at all with the tone of questions in the last MSNBC debate, ABC News' Kate Snow reports. Clinton allies said NBC's Tim Russert, with his researched questions and follow-ups, was overly hard on Clinton and suggested he was part of the "piling on" by all the men in the room.
Tonight's debate is moderated by CNN's Wolf Blitzer and features Campbell Brown and John Roberts with questions. Brown is new to the network and happens to be eight months pregnant.
For tonight, insiders say CNN would be wise to use Brown to ask the toughest questions – that could make for an interesting dynamic and take away any post-debate storyline spin like we saw in Philadelphia.
ABC News' Rick Klein will be live blogging the debate – log on for the most up to date analysis and reaction. LINK
Former president Bill Clinton is back on the campaign trail Friday in New Hampshire. The Clinton campaign has dispatched him to a rally of 300 young Democrats in Manchester at the Young Democrats' Fall National Conference at 5:45pm ET.
Bill Clinton is speaking on behalf of his wife's candidacy and will also talk about how young people can get involved in the political process in the U.S. and make a difference globally.
The Clinton campaign may need their best surrogate out there boosting up the youth vote after the comments by Clinton campaign advisers Mandy Grunwald and Mark Penn after the Jefferson Jackson dinner in Des Moines. Grunwald and Penn dismissed Obama's supporters there as looking young, "like Facebook" and like they were not old enough to vote. LINK
Rudy Giuliani is speaking to the Federalist Society at the conservative group's 2007 National Lawyer Convention in Washington. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts is also on the speaker list.
Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C., continues to court the union vote. He stays in Nevada following the debate to tour a hospital with SEIU nurses before heading to Hollywood to picket with the Writers Guild.
Tom Tancredo (presumably) takes a jab at Edwards and gets a $400 haircut in Concord, N.H. The haircut fee will be donated to the Autism Society of America.
On the campaign trail…
-- 2:30 pm ET: Speaks at the Federalist Society's 2007 Lawyers Convention, Washington, D.C.
-- 11:40 am ET: Attends an economic roundtable, Las Vegas, Nev.
-- 10:30 am ET: Holds a press conference, Denver, Colo.
-- 4:10 pm ET: Meets with voters, Errol, N.H.
-- 7:15 pm ET: Meets with voters, Dixville Notch, N.H.
-- 12:00 pm ET: Attends a rally, Pensacola, Fla.
-- 6:30 pm ET: Attends the Florida Family Policy Council Dinner, Hollywood, Fla.
-- No public events scheduled
-- No public events scheduled