Thursday’s campaign round-up

THURSDAY’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.

* Club for Growth, a right-wing lobbying organization, is launching an ad campaign in Iowa, Maine, and Wyoming, hoping to convince the Republican members of the Senate Finance Committee’s Gang of Six “not to cave in to the liberals on health care.”

* A new Quinnipiac poll shows state Attorney General Bill McCollum (R) ahead in Florida’s 2010 gubernatorial race. The poll finds McCollum leading state Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink (D) by four, 38% to 34%. Both candidates have relatively low name-ID, suggesting that fundraising and advertising will make a big difference.

* There’s a good reason the Republican establishment was desperate to see Sen. Jim Bunning (R) resign. A new SurveyUSA poll in Kentucky shows Secretary of State Trey Grayson (R) leading state Attorney General Jack Conway (D) and Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo (D) in hypothetical match-ups by about six points. Either Dem was expected to beat Bunning.

* Rep. Bob Etheridge (D-N.C.) had been recruited to run against Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) next year, but Etheridge withdrew from consideration. This week, he’s apparently giving the race another look.

* Rep. Mark Kirk (R) hoped his Senate campaign in Illinois wouldn’t have to deal with a primary challenge. That isn’t quite working out as planned — conservative lawyer and real estate developer Pat Hughes has launched his own campaign, joining at least six other Republicans who’ve filed paperwork for the GOP primary.