Election Recycling: I Guess This Is What We'll Go With Edition

bush's highway Bush campaign playing defensive about arguably offensive campaign spots with 9/11 footage. Victims' families plan Ground Zero news conference today calling for the ads' withdrawal; Karen Hughes: "With all due respect, I just completely disagree [with the families], and I believe the vast majority of the American people will as well." [WP and NYT]

Bush, during conversation on the economy in a California town with an unemployment rate of 13.6 percent: "When [a chassis-maker] says he's going to hire two more, that's really good news. A lot of people are feeling confident and optimistic about our future so they can say, 'I'm going to hire two more.' They can sit here and tell the president in front of all the cameras, 'I'm going to hire two more people.' That's confidence!" [WP and LAT]

So what kind of liberal is Kerry, anyway? "It's hard to make sense of who or what Kerry is, because he seems to be straddling all of the divides... and nobody in the party has called him on it," says a historian specializing in the modern Democratic Party. Kerry talks of a "third way." [LAT]

Kerry, opening talks with Dean to signal a united front, aims to raise $80 million before the convention. "It will be a very long row to hoe... We want to go toe to toe," says campaign finance chair. [NYT and WSJ]

McAuliffe pressured to stick to Kerry's message. Donna Brazile: "This is his moment. But it's also a moment of transition and a moment to redefine his role. The nominee has to decide whether Terry is an asset or a liability. I think they'll consider him an asset. He's been on the Titanic and knows how to bring it back up." [NYT]

Sharpton, looks at his campaign and hopes to present Kerry with an urban agenda: "I don't know if 'discontinue' is the word I would use. But clearly, from the beginning, our intention was to go out and affect policy. It was always a matter of how we would fold into an anti-Bush campaign. That was always part of the plan." [LAT]

Bush, like predecessors, legally abuses privileges such as Air Force One during campaign. [WP]

Kerry, hurt that Gore did not choose him in 2000, aims to have a better VP selection process: "He wants a process that makes the party more unified, not less. He wants it to be confidential and discreet and responsible. And he's incredibly open-minded about it," says advisor. [BG]

In a possible blow to the Democrats, FEC prepares to limit fundraising and spending of '527' groups. "There are so many things wrong with it, it boggles the mind. This is a radical overreach by the commission," says the executive director of Club for Growth. [WP and NYT]

Increased hatred towards Nader: "We love Ralph Nader. But we hate Bush more," says one anti-Nader activist. [LAT]

Archives show Kerry lost two relatives in the Holocaust. [LAT]

Bush's policy flip on C(02) emissions under fire. [WSJ]


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