The Note: Mom vs. Messiah

And might Palin be too big for her critics? "After devilishly mocking Obama -- and successfully getting into his head -- with ads about how he was just a frothy celebrity, like Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, it turns out all the McCain camp wanted was an Obama of its own," Maureen Dowd writes in her New York Times column. "Now that they have the electric Palin, they've stopped arguing that celebrity is bad."

More on the Palin effect: "Call them skirttails -- volunteer numbers have skyrocketed, fundraising has picked up and even the polling shows closer races in some down-ticket congressional contests as Republicans say the effects of 'Palin Power' are being felt across the country," the Washington Times' Stephen Dinan reports.

Dinan continues: "Rep. Tom Cole, chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, told his House colleagues in a closed-door meeting Tuesday that their online fundraising neared $250,000 during convention week, and the Republican Senate committee reported a jump from telemarketing -- from about $20,000 on a typical weekend to $54,000 the weekend that Mrs. Palin was selected."

Who's worried? Democrats have airdropped a mini-army of 30 lawyers, investigators and opposition researchers into Anchorage, the state capital Juneau and Mrs. Palin's hometown of Wasilla to dig into her record and background," John Fund writes in his Wall Street Journal column. "My sources report the first wave arrived in Anchorage less than 24 hours after John McCain selected her on August 29."

New pushback, from the Obama campaign Wednesday: "The Obama Campaign will launch Alaska Mythbusters, a group of Alaskans who have followed Governor Palin's career and will set the record straight about whether Palin has what it takes to bring the change that's needed in Washington, DC. Former AK Governor Tony Knowles and Mayor Bob Weinstein of Ketchikan, the city of the Bridge to Nowhere, will headline a press conference call on Palin's Alaska Record."

Might the worry over money be real? 527 money is maybe not so discouraged: "An Obama adviser privy to the campaign's internal thinking on the matter says that,with less than two months before the election and with the realization that Republicans have achieved financial parity with Democrats, they hope that Democratic allies -- what another campaign aide termed 'the cavalry' -- will come to Obama's aid," The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder reports.

They are worried on the Hill: "On Monday, House Democrats hatched a massive anti-GOP messaging war to paint Republicans as ineffective and unaccomplished leaders with a record of failure. Senate Democrats are kick-starting a strategy to link to McCain's candidacy to the GOP's obstruction of legislation and what they say are President Bush's policy blunders," Roll Call's Erin P. Billings and Steven T. Dennis report.

And hello, Joe: "Joe Biden yesterday took a swipe at Sarah Palin -- who has a child with Down syndrome -- for opposing stem-cell research, an attack that provoked howls of protest from Republicans," Geoff Earle and Carl Campanile write (and maybe over-write) for the New York Post. Said Biden: "Well, guess what, folks? If you care about it, why don't you support stem-cell research?" Responded the McCain campaign: Biden had "sunk to a new low."

The Sked:

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