4) Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R) released a statement Wednesday, blasting the budget compromise Congressional Republicans and the White House reached late last week. "The Speaker has always honored President Reagan's '11th commandment,'" said House Speaker John Boehner's spokesperson Michael Steel, in response, referring to the Reagan's adage: "Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican." 3) Florida state Senate President Mike Haridopolos looks like one of the first Senate challengers to outraise an incumbent. He announced raising about $2.6 million for the quarter, compared to Sen. Bill Nelson's (D-Fla.) $2 million haul. It's as much a testament to how much money a candidate can raise by virtue of holding an influential post (see: ex-FL Gov. Charlie Crist's first fundraising tally last cycle). Nelson's campaign said he would report between $4.5 million and $5 million cash on hand while Haridopolos said his campaign has $2.5 million in the bank. Meanwhile, as she waits to see whether former Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.) will challenge her, Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) raised about $1.2 million during the first quarter and has $3 million cash on hand. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), likely to face a tough reelection campaign in 2012, announced raising more than $1 million during the first three months of the year, ending with $2.3 million cash-on-hand. His potential Republican opponent, Attorney General Jon Bruning, has not yet released his figures. 2) Florida legislative leaders on Wednesday proposed creating a committee to pick a date for the Sunshine State's presidential primary. The 10-member panel would have to choose a 2012 date between the first Tuesday in January and the first Tuesday in March. Florida House Speaker Dean Cannon said the date would have to be chosen before Oct. 1. Florida's primary, which is currently slated for Jan. 31, has irked other early states to the point where the the leaders of the South Carolina and Iowa Republican parties even threatened to push for action to move the party's 2012 convention away from Tampa if Florida does not move its date back in accordance with Republican National Committee rules. 1) Some very impressive fundraising numbers for the DCCC: DCCC Chairman Steve Israel will announce today that the DCCC raised $19.6 million in the first quarter -- the strongest off-year first quarter in DCCC history. The committee has also paid off 60 percent of its 2010 cycle debt -- from $19.5 million in January to $8 million in March. -- Julie Sobel and Reid Wilson contributed to this report.
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