A terrorist attack or attacks will take place within the 50 United States between 12:01AM EST on 19-Oct-2004 and the closing of polls in the last state on 2-Nov-2004.
A terrorist attack will be judged to have taken place if a high-ranking administration member (cabinet level or higher) describes an event as having been a terrorist attack in a public press conference on or before 31-Nov-2004. An attack may or may not produce casualties, and may or may not even be public knowledge when it happens; the only criteria for this claim are that an administration official refer to an event as a terrorist attack, and that the event referred to took place in the 50 states within the specified date range.
An oblique reference to events and terrorist groups is okay; for instance, if the official giving the press conference connects a widely reported event to a terrorist group, that counts *even if* the allegation is rescinded in a later press conference. However, some disruption of daily life must have actually taken place as a result of the incident in question: if the speaker praises law enforcement for intercepting an attack in the planning phase, before any part of it could be carried out (e.g. Jose Padilla), that does not count; whereas if an attack is stopped while in progress, or if disruptive measures are taken to prevent an attack (such as the closure of airports, bridges, tunnels, or civic buildings), that would count as an attack as long as it was referred to as such by a suitable administration member in a press conference.