Tuesday’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:

* In about an hour, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) will host a press conference, at which time he’s expected to announce that he will not run for president in 2012. Yes, he’s already made this announcement before, but apparently the clarification is necessary for reporters.

* It’s election day in West Virginia, where voters will elect a governor to serve the remainder of Joe Manchin’s term. Acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D) was leading businessman Bill Maloney (R), but polls now show the race too close to call.

* In a new Washington Post/ABC News poll, Mitt Romney is now back out in front in the Republican presidential race with 25% support. Rick Perry and Herman Cain are tied for second with 16% each, though Perry has seen his support fall by nearly half over the last month.

* In the same poll, President Obama enjoys narrow leads over the leading GOP candidates among all Americans, but trails Romney by two among registered voters.

* Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign continues to falter badly, with two more top aides announcing their departure yesterday, including Ed Goeas, Bachmann’s pollster.

* Rep. Jerry Costello (D) of Illinois announced this morning that he will not seek re-election next year. Costello is currently in his 12th term.

* Romney weighed in yesterday on the racial slur that served as the name of Rick Perry’s Texas hunting lodge. He told Sean Hannity the name was “offensive.”

* Herman Cain doesn’t like “Hail to the Chief,” and if elected, he’s vowed to change it. Obligatory point: imagine if Barack Obama had said this four years ago.

* In Connecticut, the latest survey from Public Policy Polling shows Linda McMahon with a huge lead over Chris Shays in the Republican U.S. Senate primary, 60% to 27%. In the Democratic primary, Chris Murphy has a far narrower lead over Susan Bysiewicz, 39% to 33%.

* And in Massachusetts tonight, the Democratic U.S. Senate candidates will have their first debate. It will be Elizabeth Warren’s first debate as a candidate for elected office.