CLINTON: Here's a piece that will make the Obama campaign crazy. Bloomberg News has a story about how little Clinton and Obama disagree on such issues as Iraq and taxes and even health care. Doesn't the more the sentiment is out there, the more it helps Clinton and hurts Obama? "While their approaches set them apart, the front-runners for the Democratic nomination have almost no differences on issues."
EDWARDS: The AP previews Edwards' speech today, noting that it plans "to make an aggressive challenge to his Democratic rivals, charging their 'change rhetoric' doesn't match their policies and voters shouldn't pick based on nostalgia."
Some excerpts of the speech the campaign gave to First Read. Anyone else think they're pointed at Clinton? "The choice we must make is as important as it is clear. It is a choice between looking back and looking forward. A choice between the way we've always done it and the way we could do it if we dared. A choice between corporate power and the power of democracy. Between a corrupt and corroded system and a government that works for us again."
Also: "It is caution versus courage. Old versus new. Calculation versus principle. It is the establishment elites versus the American people. It is a choice between the failed compromises of the past and the bright possibilities of our future. Between resigning ourselves to Two Americas, or fighting for the One America we all believe in."
And: "Those wedded to the policies of the 70s, 80s, or 90s are wedded to the past -- ideas and policies that are tired, shop worn and obsolete. We will find no answers there. But small thinking and outdated answers aren't the only problems with a vision for the future that is rooted in nostalgia. The trouble with nostalgia is that you tend to remember what you liked and forget what you didn't. It's not just that the answers of the past aren't up to the job today, it's that the system that produced them was corrupt – and still is."
An interesting email from the Edwards campaign... Joe Trippi pens a memo to supporters noting Karl Rove's recent attacks on Hillary Clinton, and then he quotes Bush-Cheney '04 strategist Matthew Dowd claiming that in 2004, the Bush campaign made a tactical decision to attack John Kerry in the primaries so that Democrats would rally around him. The reason? The Bush campaign worried about having to face Edwards in that election. So Trippi puts two and two together with Rove and Clinton and argues that Rove is attacking Clinton because he really fears Edwards again. Of course, no mention of Obama in the email.
By the way, the Edwards press shop was busy yesterday. In fact, the campaign inexplicably decided to send out a release rebutting Ruth Marcus' Washington Post column, which seemed to claim Obama is more of a reformer than Edwards is, because Obama is for public financing of campaigns. From the Edwards release: "'There are two ways to reform our system. The first way is to pass legislation. I have publicly supported Senator Obama's plan for ethics and lobbying reform. I am also a strong supporter of public financing, and when I am the Democratic nominee for president, if the Republican nominee agrees, I will accept public financing of my campaign. But, as we have seen over and over again, every time we are actually able to pass a new law, all of the lobbyists find loopholes to keep the system rigged.'"
Meanwhile, Edwards' hometown paper, the Raleigh News and Observer, looks at how the campaign is increasingly looking like an "Iowa or bust" effort.
OBAMA: The Washington Post's Ignatius writes on Obama's appearance before the VFW earlier this week and concludes: "The vets certainly aren't cheering wildly when Obama is done, but to judge from the dozens who rush up to meet him, he seems to have reassured this conservative audience that he's not a left-wing devil. When a local reporter asks him if he's surprised by the 'warm response' he got, Obama displays the almost eerie self-confidence that has marked his rise as a candidate." For those that couldn't stay up late last night to catch Obama on the Daily Show, the AP summed up his appearance pretty well.
After taping the Daily Show, Obama spoke at a rally in Brooklyn where he got the "Obama's trying to get traction on Clinton's turf" type coverage from the New York City press corps.
Time covers Obama's Cuba policy rollout and notes it actually could help him in Florida -- both in a primary and even in a general election, because of the generational divide that Cuba creates with Cubans.