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... And a dash of oh-eight

A series of presidential trial heats for the Des Moines Register finds that former New York City Rudy Giuliani and Sen. John McCain are the top picks in Iowa.  Both "sweep four Democratic rivals in a set of hypothetical matchups involving a total of eight candidates.  However, former U.S. Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina gives them a close battle in the Iowa Poll of likely voters."  Top Democratic contender Sen. Hillary Clinton "goes winless against four Republicans.  Democrats Edwards, 2004 presidential running mate John Kerry, and Vilsack each draw a 2-2 split." 

Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D), whose showing indicates he faces "stiff competition," was in New Hampshire this past week, where he connected with voters, the Register notes. 

As her husband was attacking "right-wingers" on Fox, the Sunday Los Angeles Times was reporting that Sen. Hillary Clinton (D) was the focus of Rev. Jerry Falwell's private assurances to other leading Christian conservatives that their voters would be more motivated to turn out and oppose Clinton for president than they would be to vote against the devil himself. 

Next up in liberal MoveOn's "Progressive Vision" speech series is an address by Sen. Russ Feingold (D) in Philadelphia, titled "Restoring Democracy."  Per Feingold's office, his speech will cover a range of topics from "protecting our rights and freedoms, to campaign finance and election reform, to standing up to the administration's extraordinary attempts to expand executive power."  He'll give the speech at the National Constitution Center.

Sen. Evan Bayh and Gov. Bill Richardson are in New Hampshire today.  Over the weekend, Bayh repeated the Democratic argument that Iraq is not central to the war on terror in commenting on the NIE.  "The United States needs to begin the process of leaving Iraq by stabilizing the country so more focus can be placed on Afghanistan and Iran, he said."