Morning Political Note: Jan. 28

Every 2004 wannabe has a homestate political reporter who writes the occasional piece for the constituents on the prospect's prospects. We will predict right now that Glen Johnson of the Boston Globe (writing about Sen. John Kerry, whom we view as the Democrat just about most likely to run) will win the 2002 piece-count title. Johnson's latest ran Sunday, on Kerry's efforts to run and attack, with a caveat strategy. ( )

The Washington Post's Kamen reports on " … This is your chance to 'keep up to date and participate in the re-election of our rightful president, Al Gore,' we are told. There are 'New Gore Videos' you can watch, and there's the Gore News Network featuring everything you want to know about what the former vice president is doing these days. The site, set up by a Gore fanatic in Everett, Wash., insists it's not affiliated in any way with Gore or the Democrats." ( )


Here's a little more from that Sunday Los Angeles Times report on FPOTUS' renewed travels on behalf of his party. "With an eye on history and an ear to the ground, Clinton is hoping to help shape the political debate this election season and beyond, cementing the changes he brought to the Democratic Party and putting a retrospective gloss on his stormy presidency. This week, Clinton will headline events for Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) in San Francisco and Gov. Gray Davis and the Democratic Party in Beverly Hills. In between, the former president will give a speech on globalization at UC Berkeley and make private appearances in Palo Alto and Santa Barbara." ( )

"Paul Maslin, a Davis adviser, is delighted Clinton will be stumping for the governor at Thursday night's event in Beverly Hills. The dinner, hosted by billionaire Ron Burkle, is expected to raise $1.5 million for Davis' re-election effort. 'He dwarfs everyone else: the congressional leadership, [former Vice President Al] Gore, any governor,' Maslin said of the former president. 'He's still our No. 1 guy.'"

Does HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson like California Gov. Gray Davis? Well, he says he does. Even though the Los Angeles Times had a charming narrative Sunday about how the federal government seems to be playing favorites before the Republican gubernatorial primary, by giving a classic "heads up" to former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, the man the White House picked to run — before fully realizing, we think, just how mercurial Riordan is. And if the Clinton White House did this, the GOP would go nuts. ( )

Riordan is targeting those same quirky coastal voters on whom the GIO hasn't been able to rely in recent big elections. (

Richard Riordan is Catholic and pro-life, but at the vanguard of the GOP pro-choice wing. ( )

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