"For those writing Republican centrism's obituary after Arlen Specter's party switch, holster your quills," The Hill reports. "In fact, if the next few weeks go well for the GOP, it might pave the way for a whole new chapter in the left flank of the right-leaning party. The month of May will be huge, recruiting-wise, for Senate Republicans, with decisions expected from several big-name candidates, including Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge, Rep. Mark Kirk (Ill.) and possibly Rep. Mike Castle (Del.)."
Stu Rothenberg, writing in Roll Call, looks at places where the national committees are trying to "stir the pot" in this off year.
FLORIDA: Republicans tell First Read they are hopeful Florida Gov. Charlie Crist will announce he's getting into the race for the open Florida Senate seat. "But [NRSC Chairman John] Cornyn added that he will not intervene in a contested primary, in which Crist would be facing former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio. Rubio, a conservative Republican, announced his candidacy Tuesday and has been critical of Crist for supporting President Barack Obama's stimulus proposal," Politico writes.
OREGON: Politico: "National Republicans have landed a top-tier recruit to run against Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.). Springfield Mayor Sid Leiken announced Tuesday that he would run against DeFazio, who was elected to the seat in 1986 and has never won reelection with less than 61 percent. But DeFazio may not even run for a 13th term; the Oregon Democrat has spoken openly about the prospect of waging a campaign for governor in 2010."