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The Morning Grind / Political Hot Topics

Bush campaign ads to target Kerry's past

John Kerry's past will feature prominently in President Bush's campaign ads.
John Kerry's past will feature prominently in President Bush's campaign ads.

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Our weekend coverage includes reports and analysis in the run-up to Tuesday's presidential caucuses in Hawaii and Idaho and the primary in Utah. Watch for frequent live updates from our political correspondents and analysts.
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Morning Grind

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Check out the links below to hot political stories around the country this morning.

• STARRING ROLE: President Bush's reelection campaign has decided to focus its coming advertising barrage not only on John Kerry's record as a senator but also on his days as an antiwar activist, a House candidate and Massachusetts's lieutenant governor.

The Washington Post: Kerry's past to star in Bush's adsexternal link

• VIRTUAL LEGACY: Howard Dean's presidential campaign ended this week much as it began: lagging in the polls and nearly broke. But along the way, the campaign used the Internet in sometimes radically new ways -- a legacy that experts predict will live on as they try to divine the lessons of Dean's innovative if, ultimately, unsuccessful bid.

The Washington Post: Dean leaves legacy on online campaignexternal link

• PRIMARIES GOOD FOR DEMS: The presidential primary season has been good for Democrats and tough on President Bush, according to a national poll released yesterday.

The Boston Globe: Bush hit hard in primary seasonexternal link

• LABOR BOOST: Democratic front-runner John Kerry won the backing Thursday of the nation's largest and most influential labor organization, the AFL-CIO, an important boost for him in a nominating battle that increasingly has become a contest over who promises to be tougher in scrutinizing free-trade agreements and blocking the flight of jobs overseas.

The Washington Post: AFL-CIO Backing Gives Kerry a Boostexternal link

• RIGHTS FEEL WRONGED: President Bush left several million evangelical voters "on the table" four years ago and again is having trouble energizing Christian conservatives, prominent leaders on the religious right say.

The Washington Times: Evangelicals frustrated by Bushexternal link

• IT'S UP TO YOU, NEW YORK, NEW YORK: After Kerry's string of Democratic primary and caucus victories across the nation, New York has taken on new significance. Edwards asserts he will focus his efforts to stop Kerry, of Massachusetts, in New York, Ohio and Georgia.

The New York Times: New York is seen as looming large in Edwards runexternal link

• BERMUDA TRIANGLE: A kind of Bermuda Triangle has opened right in the heart of the presidential primary season, a warp into which entire states disappear. Next Tuesday, three states -- Utah, Idaho and Hawaii -- will become the 18th, 19th and 20th to cast votes in the race for the Democratic nomination. But none of the candidates so much as mentioned those contests after the Wisconsin primary this week.

The New York Times: Three states that the Democratic race forgotexternal link

• NO MORE MR. NICE GUY: John Edwards touted his blue-collar background and sharpened his criticism of Democratic front-runner John Kerry as the North Carolina senator's campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination surged on criticism of U.S. trade policy and jobs lost abroad.

The Associated Press: Edwards sharpens his criticism of Kerryexternal link

• DEBATE CHALLENGE: Like a hunter pursuing big game, John Edwards sought to flush front-runner John Kerry into the open Thursday by challenging him to a series of pre-Super Tuesday debates -- encounters that Edwards believes could help catapult his campaign into the lead for the Democratic presidential nomination.

The Los Angeles Times: Edwards eager to debate rival Kerryexternal link

• DOCTORED PHOTO: The photographer who snapped John Kerry attending a 1971 anti-war rally says he and his photo agency intend to track down -- and possibly sue -- whoever doctored and circulated a photo that made it appear that the then 27-year-old Vietnam veteran was appearing alongside actress Jane Fonda.

The San Francisco Chronicle: Doctored Kerry photo brings anger, threat of suitexternal link

Compiled by Heather Riley

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