Only one digest a day this week. Too much candy is bad for you!
FL-Sen: Kendrick Meek will qualify for the ballot today in an apparently unprecedented manner. Rather than pay the $10,000 filing fee, he plans to submit 130,000 signatures from across the state. (You need 112,500, so he has some wiggle room.) While this obviously was a vastly more expensive undertaking, Meek’s earned a bunch of free media as a result, and has also padded out his campaign database. On the GOP side, Marco Rubio and Charlie Crist squared off in their first debate yesterday. The Politico also has a take on the proceedings.
MA-Sen: Rachel Maddow took out a full-page ad in the Boston Globe to deny rumors that she had any interest in running against Sen. Scott Brown in 2012. But actually, it’s much better than that – click the link and check out her letter for yourself. She lands some good blows on Brown, who had sent out a letter trying to raise money off the oogedy-boogedy threat of a Maddow run. Says Maddow: “It’s standard now for conservatives to invent scary fake threats to run against.” Like her.
UT-Sen: Republican Gov. Gary Herbert says he won’t take sides in the primary battle against his fellow GOPer, Sen. Bob Bennett. Given that incumbents usually stick together, this seems worrying for Bennett – a guy who already has a long list of worries.
AL-05: Local conservative activist Hugh McInnish is seeking to bar Rep. Parker Griffith from the GOP ballot, calling him an “impostor.” A petition he filed with local party leaders was shot down in January, but he’s going to try to make his case to the state party next week.
CT-05: Former Hill aide Justin Bernier is complaining about how the House Conservatives Fund (a PAC run by Rep. Patrick McHenry) decided to endorse state Sen. Sam Caligiuri rather than himself. The HCF asked Bernier to fill out a survey and return it to one Evan Kozlow. The problem? Kozlow does work for the HCF, and he’s also Caligiuri’s general consultant.
MN-06: Dems in MN’s 6th CD have given their endorsement to state Sen. Tarryl Clark. Clark will still have to face off against Maureen Reed (formerly a member of the Independence Party) in an August primary.
NY-29: Upstate Dems are staying tight-lipped about their pick for a nominee in the special election to fill ex-Rep. Eric Massa’s seat. They are meeting today to interview six candidates, one of whom is Assemblyman David Koon. The other names are still unknown, though Paterson aide Mary Wilmot may be among them.
PA-10: A group called Catholics United, which pushed Chris Carney to support the healthcare reform bill, is now running an ad (on FOX News!) to thank him for his “yes” vote. No word on the size of the buy, but obviously it’s a cable dealie, so probably not big.
WA-03: Nurse and Democrat Maria Rodriguez-Salazar is dropping out of the race to succeed the retiring Rep. Brian Baird. This cuts the Dem field down to Denny Heck, Craig Pridemore, and Cheryl Crist.
IL-Lt. Gov: Illinois Democrats went the ultimate outsider route to pick a replacement Lt. Gov. candidate, choosing… the child of a former senator. Uh, I’m sure Sheila Simon, the daughter of the late Sen. Paul Simon, is a great person. But considering the lengths IL Dems went to try to open up this process and look like they weren’t just conducting another backroom deal (you could even apply online!), this almost seems like an absurd result. Not to mention the fact that this isn’t exactly the kind of year where a gubernatorial candidate wants to remind voters of any ties to DC. Seriously strange move here.
DSCC: Joe Biden just did a Dallas fundraiser for the DSCC, which took in $250,000. He also did a DNC fundraiser the same day. No word on how much that netted, though.