Wednesday’s campaign round-up

WEDNESDAY’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.

* Mitt Romney is under fire from the GOP’s right-wing base for supporting Sen. John McCain’s (R-Ariz.) re-election campaign.

* In Pennsylvania, a new Franklin and Marshall poll shows former right-wing congressman Pat Toomey leading both Democratic candidates, Arlen Specter and Joe Sestak, by narrow margins. In both hypothetical match-ups, most voters remain undecided. More importantly, though, 63% of registered voters in the state believe Specter should not get another term.

* In Ohio, a new Quinnipiac poll shows a competitive open Senate race. Former Bush Budget Director Rob Portman leads Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher (D) by three (40% to 37%) and Ohio Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner (D) by five (40% to 35%).

* Former Sen. Lincoln Chafee is running for governor in Rhode Island as an independent, and an early poll shows him as the frontrunner to win.

* Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (R) is taking more heat in his Senate campaign from members of his own party. Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) is launching attack ads against Crist, while former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) has described Crist’s support for economic recovery efforts as “unforgivable.”

* In Texas’ GOP gubernatorial primary, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison seems to think she’s going to lose, an assessment borne out by all the recent polls. Chris Cillizza considers why Hutchison, who was supposed to be a strong contender, fell far short.

* DSCC Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) said there will be no additional incumbents retiring this year.

* And as hard as it may be to believe, right-wing ophthalmologist Rand Paul, Rep. Ron Paul’s (R-Texas) son, appears to be the clear frontrunner in Kentucky’s GOP Senate primary. Despite overwhelming party support for Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson, yet another poll shows Paul way out in front.