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The Los Angeles Times says of McCain's big day, "McCain's speech today to GOPAC... is intended as his first broad assessment of the state of the GOP and how he would lead it.  A source familiar with the speech said McCain aspired to fill the post-midterm political vacuum in the same way Ronald Reagan did in a fabled speech after the GOP lost the White House in 1976."  The story also notes that conservative lawyers like those who belong to the Federalist Society were "furious with McCain and others in a bipartisan group of senators, nicknamed the Gang of 14, who last year blocked a bid by GOP leaders to deny Democrats the right to filibuster judicial nominations." 

Outgoing Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has hired GOP veteran ad-maker Alex Castellanos as he gears up for a possible presidential run, reports the Boston Globe, which profiles Castellanos' career. 

In the meantime, Romney is working with conservative groups on planning an anti-same sex marriage rally for Sunday. "Supporters of same-sex marriage accused Romney of planning the rally to advance his political ambitions." 

Cheney headlines a farewell tribute to retiring Senate GOP Leader Bill Frist tonight.