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GOP watch: Profiling Haley

On Sunday, the New York Times profiled Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour. “Now, for the second time in five years, Mr. Barbour finds himself in a highly visible role during a Gulf Coast catastrophe. As he nears the end of his eight-year stint as governor, Mr. Barbour’s performance could help shift his political image from that of an insider party boss to an out-front crisis manager — and possible presidential candidate in 2012.”

“The phone in Sen. John Thune’s office is about to start ringing -- a lot,” Roll Call reports. “The South Dakota Republican -- who also leads the Senate GOP Policy Committee and is widely viewed as a 2012 presidential contender -- is up for re-election this year. But no Democrat or Independent filed to run against him, leaving him with plenty of time and money to help Republicans win seats this November as the party seeks to regain a true sense of relevancy on Capitol Hill.”