Oregon: It looks like Oregon state House Speaker Jeff Merkley is about to formally enter the 2008 Senate race against Gordon Smith. Meanwhile, Steve Novick holds Gordon Smith to the 50-mark. Despite earlier recruitment setbacks, Smith is far from out of the woods.
Kentucky: Bad news for Mitch McConnell: he's looking at his worst approval ratings ever (at 48-44) just as Democrats are entering the race! Speaking of, WaPo's Cillizza looks at state Attorney General Greg Stumbo's strengths and weaknesses in a campaign against McConnell and comes to the conclusion that "this race has potential despite McConnell's significant political chops and fundraising capacity." Meanwhile, The Hill suggests that the 2007 gubernatorial race in Kentucky could "hamstring" Democratic fundraising for candidates challenging McConnell. I'd counter that there will be enough time left in the year after the election for Senate candidates to get their asks in, and they'll likely enjoy momentum from a new Democratic Governor. Much to look forward to.
Minnesota: Uh-oh! Norm Coleman's disapproval has climbed to an atrocious 48%.
Massachusetts: The Boston Herald offers a John Kerry challenger-watch:
A slew of Republican names have been kicked around, including former Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey, Harvard Pilgrim honcho Charlie Baker, radio host Peter Blute, former Bush chief of staff Andy Card, U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan and even Brockton convenience store kingpin Christy Mihos.Note to the NRSC: Massachusetts can be competitive. You just have to drop a few million bucks there. Do it!
The latest name being floated by GOP types is Pioneer Institute director Jim Stergios, the former undersecretary of the state Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. One insider said Stergios was approached recently by some top GOP fund-raisers and is considering jumping in.
Alaska: The Alaska Congressional delegation corruption pyramid is percolating.
Texas: Have fun playing dress-up with John Cornyn.
Fox "News" has a grand tradition of repeatedly changing the facts of a situation, like the Party affiliation of wayward Republicans. As such, Rising Hegemon offers this satirical look at Fox News through the 'early years.'