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.

* House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio), apparently hoping to lower the same expectations that he built up, said yesterday it would be a “steep climb” for Republicans to retake the House majority in the midterm elections.

* A new Quinnipiac poll shows Dems back out in front on the generic congressional ballot, leading 42% to 36%. Two months ago, the GOP led, 44% to 39%.

* In the latest twist in Arizona’s Senate Republican primary, Sen. John McCain’s campaign is strongly suggesting in a new web ad that former J.D. Hayworth is “dumb.” The criticism comes on the heels of a video in which Hayworth insisted that the United States never declared war on Nazi Germany.

* As expected, former state Sen. Dino Rossi (R) formally kicked off his Senate campaign in the state of Washington this morning.

* After struggling badly for months, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) is starting to look a little stronger. A new Suffolk University poll shows the incumbent with a 13-point lead over Republican challenger Charlie Baker, 42% to 29%, with state Treasurer Tim Cahill (I) third with 14%/

* In Florida, the latest poll commissioned by the St. Petersburg Times/Miami Herald/BayNews9/Central Florida News 13, shows state Attorney General Bill McCollum (R) leading in this year’s gubernatorial race, but not by much. The survey shows him up by just two points over state CFO Alex Sink (D), 34% to 32%.

* Speaking of Florida’s gubernatorial race, state Sen. Paula Dockery (R), struggling to get noticed, ended her statewide campaign this week. Dockery cited poor fundraising in a statement.

* New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo (D) announced this morning that Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy (D) will be his running mate in this year’s gubernatorial campaign.

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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.