Monday’s campaign round-up

MONDAY’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:

* When will Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) drop the pretense and launch a presidential bid? Any day now. [Update: Or maybe he’ll just skip the race altogether.]

* Presidential hopeful Rick Santorum (R) was asked yesterday on Fox News about his vote in support of Medicare Part D. “I was against that. I spoke against it. I worked against it. But we lost,” he said. The detail Santorum hopes Republicans overlook: he voted for it, and didn’t even try to pay for it.

* In West Virginia, Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Maloney is claiming credit for helping save 33 miners in Chile who were trapped last summer.

* Rep. Ben Ray Lujan (D) was clearly thinking about launching a U.S. Senate campaign, but has apparently decided to skip the race. When it comes to replacing retiring Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D), the Democratic primary seems likely to come down to Rep. Martin Heinrich and state Auditor Hector Balderas.

* In Kentucky, state Rep. Mike Harmon has joined Phil Moffett’s Republican gubernatorial ticket. Harmon believes the invitation to run for lieutenant governor is a sign from God.

* And Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the most recent Republican presidential nominee, was asked to comment yesterday on Donald Trump’s apparent national ambitions. “I’m staying out of it,” McCain said, adding, “He’s having the time of his life. I congratulate him for getting all of the attention.”