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:

* The 2012 presidential election is still about 300 days away, but the Obama campaign is already planning to hit the airwaves, “requesting rates from TV stations for a potential — and possibly very significant — ad buy.” The Clinton ’96 campaign also went on the air very early.

* A New York Times/CBS News poll released this morning shows Mitt Romney leading the Republican field nationally with underwhelming 28% support. Newt Gingrich is second with 21%, with Rick Santorum third with 16%.

* As for general-election match-ups, PPP shows President Obama leading Romney by five, 49% to 44%, while a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows Romney leading Obama by two, 48% to 46%.

* Former half-term Gov. Sarah Palin said on Fox News last night that she would “vote for Newt” if she were a Republican primary voter in South Carolina. That was apparently not, however, a formal endorsement.

* The Gingrich campaign was so pleased with the standing ovation the disgraced former Speaker received in Monday night’s debate that it’s turned his answer into a campaign ad.

* A federal appeals court rejected Rick Perry’s lawsuit in Virginia yesterday, leaving Romney and Ron Paul as the only candidates who’ll appear on the state’s primary ballot.

* Some of Perry’s South Carolina supporters believe his campaign is a lost cause. They’re almost certainly right.

* On a related note, PPP found that Perry is running third in his own home state of Texas, trailing Romney and Gingrich.

* Seeing a possible opportunity, the National Republican Congressional Committee will begin airing attack ads in advance of the upcoming special election in Oregon’s 1st congressional district. The election is Jan. 31.

* And in Pennsylvania, Rep. Todd Platts (R) announced yesterday that he will retire this year and not seek re-election.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. 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.