FRIDAY’S CAMPAIGN ROUND-UP…. Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that wouldn’t necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:

* Are Americans really OK with this? “Spending by outside groups trying to influence the mid-term elections increased by a staggering $78 million in the last week, pushing the total spent by non-profits, labor unions and party committees to more than $200 million this cycle. That’s an 80 percent increase from 2006, the last mid-term election.”

* In other fundraising news, the Republican Governors Association raised a stunning $31 million in the third quarter, about triple the amount raised by the Democratic Governors Association. The DCCC, however, outraised the NRCC in September, $15.9 million to $11.2 million.

* In Florida’s U.S. Senate race, Republicans are so confident in Marco Rubio’s success that the NRSC has canceled $4 million in TV ads, and will instead spend the money in California, Pennsylvania, and Illinois.

* Speaking of Florida, a new Sunshine State News poll shows Alex Sink (D) leading Rick Scott (R) in this year’s gubernatorial race, 48% to 45%. The same poll had shown Scott with a modest lead.

* In West Virginia’s U.S. Senate race, a new Marshall University poll shows Gov. Joe Manchin (D) with a surprisingly large lead over John Raese (R), 48% to 38%.

* And speaking of West Virginia, remember when then the National Republican Senatorial Committee said it had nothing do with the “hicky” casting call? It turns out, the NRSC wasn’t telling the truth.

* In Ohio’s gubernatorial race, a new Ohio Poll shows John Kasich (R) leading Gov. Ted Strickland (D), 51% to 43%.

* In South Carolina’s gubernatorial race, the Republican Governors Association is worried enough about Nikki Haley’s (R) chances that it’s running attack ads against Democratic nominee Vincent Sheheen.

* In Massachusetts’ gubernatorial race, the latest Suffolk University poll shows Gov. Deval Patrick (D) out in front in his re-election bid with 46% support, followed by Charlie Baker (R) with 39% and Tim Cahill (I) third at 10%.

* Vermont’s gubernatorial race continues to be very close, with a new Vermont Public Radio poll showing Brian Dubie (R) leading Peter Shumlin (D) by one, 44% to 43%.

* In Nevada’s gubernatorial race, Brian Sandoval (R) leads Rory Reid (D), but the margin depends on which poll you rely on. PPP shows Sandoval up by nine, while Mason-Dixon has Sandoval’s leading by 15.

* And in Connecticut’s gubernatorial race, a new Quinnipiac poll shows Dan Malloy (D) leading Tom Foley (R), 49% to 42%.

Our ideas can save democracy... But we need your help! Donate Now!

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. 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.