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.

* Connecticut’s Ned Lamont, the Democratic nominee for the Senate in 2006, announced yesterday that he’s setting up a gubernatorial exploratory committee.

* In Utah, state Attorney General Mark Shurtleff (R) was planning to take on Sen. Bob Bennett (R) in a primary next year, but a personal tragedy led the challenger to drop his bid yesterday. While this is a break for Bennett, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R) conceded that he has not yet ruled out a primary challenge of his own.

* Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R), who assumed the office after Janet Napolitano joined the Obama cabinet, will run next year for a full term. Given Brewer’s low approval ratings, she is widely perceived as vulnerable, and the Democratic establishment seems to be lining up to support state Attorney General Terry Goddard.

* Rep. Nathan Deal (R) is running for governor next year, and as part of his campaign, he’s reminding voters that he’s signed a letter to the White House, asking for a copy of President Obama’s birth certificate.

* Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett (D) is thinking about running for governor next year, and received some encouragement yesterday during a private meeting with White House Political Director Patrick Gaspard.

* Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) was slated to be the keynote speaker for the Palm Beach County Democratic Party’s annual fund-raising dinner next week. Given her weak-to-wavering support for health care reform, local party leaders decided to pull the invitation.

* And in New Hampshire, Ted Gatsas was elected mayor of Manchester this week. Soon after, he received congratulatory calls from Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, and George Pataki.