Friday’s campaign round-up

FRIDAY’S CAMPAIGN ROUND-UP….Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that wouldn’t generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers.

* Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) told reporters the DSCC will target nine races in 2010. Five are open-seat races currently held by Republicans (Florida, Ohio, Missouri, New Hampshire, and Kansas), while four are held by vulnerable GOP incumbents (Louisiana, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania).

* Judd Gregg’s announcement yesterday didn’t affect Rep. Paul Hodes’ (D) plans in New Hampshire — he’s still running for the Senate.

* Sen. Arlen Specter’s (R-Pa.) decision to support the economic stimulus plan is apparently hurting his standing with Republicans in Pennsylvania.

* Another poll shows New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine (D) looking vulnerable in his race against former U.S. attorney Chris Christie (R) later this year.

* If Republicans hoped to take down Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) next year, they may want to lower their expectations. A new Research 2000 poll shows Dorgan with a 22-point lead over Gov. John Hoeven (R) in a hypothetical match-up (Hoeven has not said whether he’ll challenge Dorgan).

* Former Bush aide Ed Gillespie announced yesterday that he’ll help lead Republican Bob McDonnell’s gubernatorial campaign in Virginia.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.