Discuss as:

More Midterm Mania

The Wall Street Journal looks at how the Senate playing field has changed over time and how Democrats have gotten most of the breaks, with the notable exception of New Jersey.

The Washington Times takes its turn reporting on an apparent shift in mood in Washington.  "Some on both sides had expected an election debacle for the Republicans, driven by the Iraq war, high gas prices and the perception that a Republican-led Washington can neither shoot nor spend straight.  Now those perceptions have changed." 

The Chicago Tribune travels to ARIZONA's competitive House district to see how immigration is playing out in contests across the country.  "With six weeks to go before the elections, Democrats and Republicans are embracing the complicated and emotionally powerful issue of immigration reform.  But as the Republican-controlled Congress prepares to adjourn, most likely without passing an immigration bill, the debate is not playing out in a predictable way" -- as some Republicans find themselves divided on the issue, while some Democrats are taking a tough stance. 

In CALIFORNIA today, GOP Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger meets with the Dalai Lama, while Democratic challenger Phil Angelides continues to highlight his pledge to call on President Bush to bring California National Guard troops home from Iraq should he be elected governor.  Public employee unions are launching an anti-Schwarzenegger ad campaign today in hopes of boosting Angelides, the Los Angeles Times says.  "Like the ads that helped kill Schwarzenegger's initiatives in the special election last November, the new commercials accuse him of breaking promises to stand up to special interests," and also of not being "a champion of public schools." 

The Hartford Courant details CONNECTICUT Sen. Joe Lieberman's 10-step plan for Iraq, which he rolled out yesterday.  Step one: "Replace Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld."  The plan does not include a timetable for US troop withdrawal. 

The four candidates seeking to replace MASSACHUSETTS Gov. Mitt Romney (R) participated in the first of four general election debates last night and traded barbs about transportation, immigration, education and taxes.  GOP nominee and Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey was a little distracted during the debate as self-funding independent Christy Mihos "prodded, taunted, and interrupted" her so many times that "[h]is presence added feistiness to the forum and may have even drawn sympathy for Healey from some viewers...  Mihos's attacks on Healey seemed driven in part by strategy.  Her conservative and moderate voters may be more open to supporting him." 

Healey informed the state yesterday that she intends to spend $15 million during the general election, which would set a record for the most expensive statewide race.  "If Healey had not made her intentions clear in a letter to the state Office of Campaign and Political Finance, the spending cap would have been set at $1.5 million for each candidate." 

Roll Call suggests that former Democratic Gov. Jim McGreevey's return to the public eye to promote his new book might exacerbate NEW JERSEY Sen. Bob Menendez's ethics issues. 

In what could be a blow to Sen. Rick Santorum (R), the Green party candidate in PENNSYLVANIA may get thrown off the ballot for lack of valid signatures. 

In TEXAS, the Houston Chronicle writes, gubernatorial candidate Kinky Friedman (I) campaigned yesterday with the man whose onetime success he hopes to replicate: former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura.  "Sitting next to… Ventura, who sported a braided beard and railed about the war in Iraq, Kinky Friedman looked downright mainstream on Monday." 

And former Sen. John Edwards (D) campaigns with VIRGINIA Senate nominee Jim Webb in Fredericksburg.  Sen. George Allen (R) is flatly denying Salon.com's report in which former college football teammates of Allen's say he "repeatedly used an inflammatory racial epithet and demonstrated racist attitudes toward blacks during the early 1970s."  The Washington Post reports that other former teammates of Allen's dispute the report's most damaging account.  Allen said yesterday that the epithet is not part of his vocabulary, while the New York Times and New Republic find other sources who say it is.