President Rand Paul: The curious breakdown of how Rand Paul became the only Senator to vote against cloture and ultimately for Hagel's confirmation.
Christie: The New Jersey Governor was not invited to CPAC. Senate
Georgia: The Club for Growth recently released a scorecard rating different potential candidates in this seat. Rep. Paul Broun has the clear edge with a 100% rating this session and a 99% lifetime rating. The next closest Representatives, Tom Graves, has a 93% rating, but he is not likely to run. After that, Rep. Phil Gingrey boasts 89%, Rep. Tom Price 86% and Rep. Jack Kingston 85%. Will this trigger CFG money to go to Broun? The organization is mum so far. Governor
Wisconsin: PPP finds Governor Scott Walker (R) in much the same position he was in right before the election, with 48/49 approval. Against a host of Democrats with a bit of a deficit in name ID Walker leads, the best known being Ron Kind who he leads 46-42. Former Senator Feingold (D), however, leads Walker 47/49 and has a bit higher approval ratings in the sample at 53/37. This isn't shocking- he has higher name ID than all of the other Democrats, and that is part of Walker's lead right now.
Kansas: PPP also finds Governor Sam Brownback (R) with some rough approval ratings in his state at 37/52. However, he still leads all comers, including his best-known potential opponent, former Governor Kathleen Sebellius 48-43. However, less known Democrats with less unfavorable baggage keep the race close as well, including 44-40 over Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer and 45-39 over former Governor Mike Parkinson. House
IL-02: ICYMI, there was a special election primary last night in Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s old seat. Michael Bloomberg Cook County Chief Administrative Officer Robin Kelly won.
PA-12: Former Rep. Mark Critz (D) may want a rematch with now Rep. Keith Rothfus, according to a source close to him. Back in December, Critz was still considering. Part of the decision has to involve how much tougher this district became for a Democrat after redistricting- there is a reason, after all, that Keith Rothfus (R) is now a Representative.
NC-03: Rep. Walter Jones (R) continues to ruffle feather on foreign policy, this time at a recent North Carolina YAL convention, saying that LBJ is"probably rotting in hell right now because of the Vietnam War, and he probably needs to move over for Dick Cheney." Jones gets some level of primary every couple of years and easily dispatches the opponent.
MN-05: Another meltdown from Rep. Keith Ellison (D), this time on Hannity, where he opened by attacking the conservative host as a "shill for the Republican Party" and proceeded to rant for most of six minutes relatively uninterrupted. NC-06: Rep. Howard Coble (R) is in the hospital after "repeated bouts of dizziness." Coble, who is 81, has been on retirement watch for some time as he faces recurring health issues.
TX-33: Former State Rep. Domingo Garcia (D) is considering another run in this Hispanic-majority seat. The tougher thing to figure out is why he htinks he would do better this time when his opponent, Rep. Marc Veasey (D), will have two years to entrench himself. Veasey is propped up by a relatively, compared to the Hispanic population, better mobilized pocket of African American voters in southeast Tarrant County.
SC-01: Roll Call gathers up new ads in the special election Republican primary here, with Teddy Turner turning in some digs against Sanford's past, Sanford running an ad highlighting how conservative he is with mini-testimonials, and Grooms saying everyone says they are a conservative and... well, he will be one, too. Miscellaneous
VRA: Oral arguments on Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act begin today before SCOTUS in Shelby County v Holder.
Gay Marriage: Interesting things to see here in the Republican legal brief in support of gay marriage. Our former CA-GOV candidate, Meg Whitman, has flipped to support gay marriage. Only two sitting US Representatives, Rep. Richard Hanna in NY-22 and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in FL-27, signed on as well. And former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson is listed in support as a Republican- does this mean he is back in the party?
MN-SD-35: State Senator Brandon Petersen (R) became the first Republican in the State Senate to publicly support potential gay marriage legislation, drawing some significant flak in a district that voted yes on the marriage amendment by a bit over 50% (which he himself voted to put on the ballot). The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is threatening to spend heavily against Petersen and other Republicans who vote the wrong way on this issue, with several other Republicans still undecided at this point in both chambers.