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.

* Former Rep. Rick Lazio (R), perhaps best known for getting trounced by Hillary Clinton in New York nine years ago, is planning to run for governor of New York next year.

* The polls in Florida’s gubernatorial race are far from consistent, but Rasmussen has state Attorney General Bill McCollum (R) leading state CFO Alex Sink (D), 42% to 34%.

* In North Carolina, a survey from InsiderAdvantage shows Sen. Richard Burr (R) with just a 39% approval rating. Though this reinforces the perception that Burr is definitely vulnerable next year, Democrats have not found a top-tier challenger for the race.

* There’s a very competitive Republican Senate primary in Kansas for the open-seat contest next year, featuring two House members: Reps. Todd Tiahrt and Jerry Moran. Yesterday, it seemed the religious right started moving heavily in Tiahrt’s direction.

* In Oregon, the latest Research 2000 poll for Daily Kos shows Democrats with the edge in next year’s gubernatorial campaign. The leading Democratic candidates — former Gov. John Kitzhaber and Rep. Peter DeFazio — are leading the likely Republican candidates — former Sen. Gordon Smith and Rep. Greg Walden — in hypothetical general election match-ups.

* Memphis Mayor Willie W. Herenton is stepping down next month after five terms, in preparation of a primary challenge against Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.).

* Is Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) going to run for president? He seems to be thinking about it.

* Is former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge (R) going to run for president? He’s thinking about it, too.