Wednesday’s campaign round-up

WEDNESDAY’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:

* Though previously expected to be the Republican frontrunner, former Sen. Jim Talent (R) of Missouri will reportedly not seek a rematch against Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) next year.

* The Illinois Supreme Court gave Rahm Emanuel what he was looking for yesterday: a stay of an appellate court’s decision that removed him from Chicago’s mayoral ballot.

* As if Texas wasn’t quite reactionary enough, GOP lawmakers in the state are advancing a measure to require photo identification in order to vote. Studies have shown such laws invariably punish the poor, minorities, and students, which I suspect is the point of the Republican effort.

* In case there were any lingering doubts about Mississippi’s Gov. Haley Barbour (R) presidential ambitions, he’ll be attending private events in South Carolina today.

* In West Virginia, Public Policy Polling shows Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) looking pretty strong in advance of his 2012 bid for a full term. Manchin, a former governor, has huge leads over most of his GOP challengers, and a nine-point lead over Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R), generally considered the state’s top Republican.

* Speaking of Public Policy Polling, the pollster also found this week that President Obama, who narrowly won North Carolina’s electoral votes in 2008, leading all of the top Republican presidential contenders in margins ranging from three to nine points. Romney was the most competitive, while Palin was the least.

* In Iowa, Christie Vilsack appears to be gearing up for a Democratic congressional campaign, but with the state poised to lose a seat in post-Census redistricting, her ambitions may end up pitting her against incumbent Rep. Leonard Boswell (D). Vilsack is married to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Iowa’s former two-term governor.

* Jim Suttle, the Democratic mayor of Omaha, Nebraska, just half-way into his first term, was subjected to a recall campaign organized by conservative activists. Yesterday, Suttle appeared to win and will keep his job.

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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.