Tuesday’s campaign round-up

TUESDAY’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.

* Florida Gov. Charlie Crist will announce his plans for the rest of the year on Thursday, the day before the filing deadline for an expected independent Senate bid.

* Asked yesterday whether Crist would caucus with Democrats or Republicans should he win as an independent, the governor said, “You’re way ahead of me.”

* Sen. Bob Bennett (R) is now running third in Utah, reinforcing the fact that his career is nearly over — there’s just no room for a conservative senator in a very conservative party.

* Last week, Ohio Republicans sent out a mailer saying they’re trying to take Rep. Betty Sutton (D-Ohio) “out of the House and send her back to the kitchen.” Sutton is fighting back, calling on her Republican opponent to denounce the misogynistic attack.

* The Democratic primary in North Carolina’s Senate race is just a week away, and at this point, Secretary of State Elaine Marshall has a slight edge over former state Sen. Cal Cunningham in the multi-candidate race. If no candidate gets a majority 40%, the top two will compete in a June runoff. [fixed]

* In Kentucky, Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo (D), a leading Senate candidate, emphasizes his opposition to cap-and-trade — the basis for his party’s energy policy — in a new campaign ad.

* Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) will not run unopposed after all — Fox News commentator Jay Townsend will kick off his Republican campaign this weekend.

* And in Georgia, real estate magnate Ray Boyd had planned on running for governor as a Republican, but will now reportedly run as an independent. Boyd has said he intends to spend $2 million of his own money on the race.

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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.