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Special Report

Tough Cookies?

The latest from the Political Grapevine:

Slight Bounce

Apart from the slight bounce for John Kerry we noted earlier, the new FOX News poll contains some bad news for President Bush on other questions ... The number of Americans who say Kerry is a stronger leader than President Bush has substantially increased since last month, while the President's numbers have dropped.

The same is true on the question of who is more knowledgeable on the issues, and on the question of who is more honest and trustworthy. But on the never-before-asked question of whom would you put in charge if the survival of the U.S. were at stake, President Bush edges out Kerry.

Tough Cookies?

Family Circle magazine says there's -- "no reason" to halt this year's recipe contest between the presidential candidates' wives -- even though Teresa Heinz Kerry now says her pumpkin spice cookies taste -- "nasty." In fact, Heinz Kerry has said the recipe isn't even hers, insisting somebody at the Kerry campaign gave that recipe out and -- "somebody [did] it on purpose to give a nasty recipe."

Laura Bush, meanwhile, is standing by her oatmeal chocolate chunk recipe. Since Family Circle had its first so-called bake-off in 1992, the winning recipe has always corresponded with who ends up living in the White House.

Prudish Due to President Bush?

President Bush has been blamed by Democrats for a wide range of problems, but he's now being blamed for preventing Sharon Stone from kissing Halle Berry in their new movie "Catwoman." Sharon Stone, quoted by Ireland Online, says -- "Halle's so beautiful, and I wanted to kiss her. I said, 'How can you have us in the movie and not have us kiss? [It]'s such a waste.' [But] That's what you get for having George Bush as president."

"Finds Solace" in "Slaughter"

The wife of a martyr in Saudi Arabia has reportedly written a letter to the wife of Paul Johnson, the American beheaded by Saudi terrorists several weeks ago, telling Ms. Johnson that she, "finds solace" in Johnson's "slaughter," and insisting, "The blood of your husband is the blood of a dog because he is an idolatrous infidel. ... May you shed tears mixed with blood, just as we wept blood because of your airplanes and your troops [in the Middle East]."

The letter, posted on an Al-Qaeda-linked Web site, says -- "We are just getting started and the corpse of your husband shall be followed by mountains of corpses of his countrymen, until they leave the country of our Prophet, ... lowly and humiliated."

FOX News' Michael Levine contributed to this report