Friday’s campaign round-up

Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that won’t necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:

* Sen. Herb Kohl (D) of Wisconsin will retire at the end of his term next year, becoming the eighth sitting senator — and sixth Democrat — to retire this cycle. Among the names of possible candidates already being floated are former Sen. Russ Feingold (D), former gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett (D), and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R).

* Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) said this morning he’ll make “a very important announcement” on his Fox News show over the weekend. No one seems to know what the announcement will be, or whether it’ll relate to his presidential campaign.

* Fearing that a race they expected to win easily is slipping away, officials at the National Republican Congressional Committee have decided to invest an additional $400,000 in campaign ads in the special election in New York’s 26th congressional district.

* On a related note, Jane Corwin, the Republican nominee in the special election, has loaned her campaign an additional $960,000. The GOP appears to be reaching a panic level in this race. The election is a week from Tuesday.

* According to a CBS News report, if Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) runs for president, he can expect support from New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), and former First Lady Laura Bush.

* The new Chicago headquarters for President Obama’s re-election effort opened its doors yesterday. It’s the first modern presidential re-election campaign not to be based in D.C.

* In West Virginia, Earl Ray Tomblin appears to have the Democratic nomination wrapped up, but Public Policy Polling shows Bill Maloney leading Betty Ireland by just one point, 32% to 31%, in the Republican primary.

* As expected, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) formally announced his third failed presidential campaign this morning.

* Rep. Todd Akin (R) will reportedly kick off his U.S. Senate campaign in Missouri next week.

* And in Kentucky, new polling shows David Williams with a commanding lead in the Republican gubernatorial primary. He’s positioned to face incumbent Gov. Steve Beshear (D) in November, and Beshear is favored to win a second term.