Friday’s campaign round-up

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:

* Sen. Jim DeMint’s (R-S.C.) campaign machine is becoming so big, it may rival the National Republican Senatorial Committee itself in 2012. The effect, of course, will be dragging the party even further to the hysterical right.

* Sen. Claire McCaskill’s (D-Mo.) plane troubles have gotten a little worse, with revelations that she billed taxpayers for political flights on planes owned by her and her husband. She’s already reimbursed the Treasury, but the controversy won’t help her 2012 re-election bid.

* Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, has talked to MSNBC host Joe Scarborough about running against Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) next year. Scarborough is a former Republican member of Congress from Florida.

* As part of an aggressive far-right primary challenge, Sen. Richard Lugar’s (R-Ind.) residency status is now being challenged in advance of his re-election bid.

* Rep. Dean Heller (R) hasn’t formally launched a U.S. Senate bid in Nevada, but his candidacy now appears to be a foregone conclusion.

* Speaking of Nevada, Mark Amodei, chair of the state GOP, will step down from his post to run for the U.S. House seat Heller will leave vacant. Failed U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle (R) is eyeing the same race.

* In Montana, state Attorney General Steve Bullock (D) appears likely to run for governor next year, much to the delight of state party officials who urged him to run.

* Former governor and DNC chairman Tim Kaine won’t announce his U.S. Senate plans in Virginia until next week, “at the earliest.”

* CNN reports today that Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is “increasingly serious” about running for president. Yes, of the United States.