BARBOUR: "Gov. Haley Barbour's stipulation that the younger Scott sister, Gladys, donate a kidney to elder sister Jamie as a condition of her release has drawn critics in the medical community," The Jackson Clarion-Ledger reports.
CHRISTIE: Here's a headline for you: New Jersey GOP Governor Chris Christie: "I don't regret going to Disney World during snowstorm," per the New York Daily News. "I wouldn't change the decision even if I could do it right now," Christie said. "I had a great five days with my children. I promised that." He said he promised his family that at the end of his first year he'd take them to Disney World. "My first and most important responsibility, in my view, is as a husband and a father, and I think I made that pretty clear to the people of New Jersey when I was running."
DANIELS: Politico’s Ben Smith writes that Yale students have launched the second online campaign to draft Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels as a presidential candidate. One catch: the leader of the effort is a registered Democrat.
Over the holidays, Politico examined what could be a test of the bond between two political friends -- Haley Barbour and Mitch Daniels -- if they both decide to run for president. “There is a remarkable symmetry to their careers — two Washington political operatives who went home and became governor — but they’ve always been allies. Until perhaps now.”
NEW HAMPSHIRE: The Boston Phoenix examines the consequences of the seismic political shift New Hampshire experienced in this last election: Republican landslides and a simultaneous exodus of leaders in the state GOP. “This convergence of the New Hampshire GOP's sudden surge in power and absence of leadership has set the stage for two epic battles so far, and a third unfolding, between the party establishment and the Tea Party–based conservative outsiders.”
HUNTSMAN: Republican Jon Huntsman, the former Utah governor currently serving as President Obama's ambassador to China, suggested in an interview to Newsweek that he is open to a 2012 presidential run. “You know, I’m really focused on what we’re doing in our current position,” he said. “But we won’t do this forever, and I think we may have one final run left in our bones.” And: "Asked whether he is prepared to rule out a run in 2012 (since it would require him to campaign against his current boss), he declines to comment."
More: "[S]ources close to Huntsman (who requested anonymity to speak freely without his permission) say that during his December trip to the U.S., he met with several former political advisers in Washington and Salt Lake City to discuss a potential campaign. 'I’m not saying he’s running,' says one supporter who has worked with him in the past. 'But we’re a fire squad; if he says the word, we can get things going fast.'"
PALIN: Sen.-elect Pat Toomey (R-PA) said on “Meet the Press” that Sarah Palin could win Pennsylvania if she ran for president.
PAWLENTY: Minnesota Public Radio profiles Pawlenty's next chapter. On his book tour to kick off this month, the Minnesota governor dismissed that it was about politics: "Well I know everybody's trying to say that the book tour is about politics, but I think of the 30 or more days that I will be promoting the book across the country, I think only two days are in New Hampshire or Iowa," he said. MPR points out: "Actually, the schedule has Pawlenty in Iowa and New Hampshire for four days and six engagements." Pawlenty: "The rest of them are in other places so. You know, there may be political stops that we do, but the primary purpose of the tour is to promote the book and to try to generate interest in the book."
ROMNEY: On NBC's Meet the Press, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said he thinks "Probably [Mitt] Romney" is "the most electable conservative. He's got his problems as a candidate, but so does everyone else."
The conservative Boston Herald: "The paroled jewel thief who died in a shootout with slain Woburn police officer John 'Jack' Maguire could become Mitt Romney’s Willie Horton should the former GOP governor run for president in 2012, some political strategists said."