Friday’s campaign round-up

FRIDAY’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.

* Bill Clinton to the rescue: “The former president has become one of the party’s best salesmen. He has long been in demand to raise money for Democratic candidates, but now there is a more pressing need: raising the spirits of Democratic voters, dispensing wisdom as he works to put the party’s political challenges into a broader context. A decade after he was banished from the campaign trail — seen at the time as a liability to Vice President Al Gore’s presidential ambitions — Mr. Clinton is now the most sought-after Democrat, logging 29 stops so far this year with more to come in the fall. ”

* A Kentucky cable news channel, CN2, polled the state’s closely watched U.S. Senate race, and found the two challengers effectively tied. State Attorney General Jack Conway (D) had 41.7% support, while right-wing ophthalmologist Rand Paul (R) had 41.2%.

* In a demonstration of just how far some Blue Dogs are willing to go, Rep. Joe Donnelly (D) of Indiana has a new ad blasting cap-and-trade, calling it Nancy Pelosi’s “energy tax.” Donnelly is, in other words, incorporating specific Republican talking points into his re-election message.

* After a very aggressive radio ad from his primary challenger this week, Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) is threatening to sue any in-state radio stations that agree to air the spot. Among the problems: Chet Traylor alleges in the ad that Vitter assaulted a former female opponent.

* Rep. Artur Davis, after his surprisingly awful showing in Alabama’s Democratic gubernatorial primary, is lashing out at Ron Sparks, who beat him easily: “Davis’ words drip with disdain and lingering bitterness, providing a pathetic and potentially final note to a political career that was once noted for its fast ascendance and seemingly limitless potential.”

* The latest survey from Public Policy Polling shows Bill Brady (R) leading incumbent Gov. Pat Quinn (D) in this year’s gubernatorial race, 39% to 30%. Quinn’s support would likely be higher, but a Green Party candidate is currently generating 11% support.

* In Florida, state CFO Alex Sink, the Dems’ gubernatorial nominee, tapped former gubernatorial candidate Rod Smith yesterday as her running mate.

* And for all the talk about various potential GOP kingmakers, right-wing Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) appears to have the strongest record in helping Republicans win primaries. (thanks to R.P. for the tip)

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