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:

* A new CNN poll shows a very competitive race for the Republican presidential nomination, at least at the national level. Mitt Romney leads with 16%, while Rick Perry is just two points behind him at 14%. Of course, one may want to approach this poll with some skepticism — it has Rudy Giuliani and Sarah Palin tied for third with 13% each.

* Republican presidential hopeful Jon Huntsman’s campaign manager resigned yesterday. It’s generally not evidence of a campaign that’s on the right track.

* A measure to repeal Ohio’s SB5, which restricts collective-bargaining rights, will be on the statewide ballot next year. Polls, at least at this point, show strong support for removing the law from the books.

* Fascinating piece from Nate Silver on right-wing GOP governors: “If the states are laboratories of democracy, then the Republican Party’s research pipeline has run dry. Moderate Republican governors, a thriving species before last year’s elections, are all but extinct.”

* Hoping to turn his Republican presidential campaign around, Tim Pawlenty will invest about $1 million to improve his chances in the Ames Straw Poll.

* The Democratic National Committee has launched its first ad buy of the cycle, airing a new Spanish-language spot in support of President Obama.

* Not surprisingly, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) appears to be cruising to re-election.

* In Indiana, Sen. Dick Lugar’s (R) primary opponent is running a new television ad blasting the incumbent for having a “bromance” with President Obama.

* And former Louisiana Gov. Buddy Roemer formally kicked off his Republican presidential campaign yesterday with an event in New Hampshire. Roemer is perhaps best known for losing in a GOP gubernatorial primary to KKK leader David Duke. (thanks to R.B. for the heads-up)

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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.