Welcome back to Hotline Sort. Michaud won't run for the Senate in Maine, setting the stage for Pingree. Meanwhile, the Texas primary will be on May 29, a new Ohio poll shows a tight race between Santorum and Romney, and the dog days have already arrived in New Mexico. Here's today's rundown:
8) The husband of a staffer on former New Mexico GOP Rep. Heather Wilson's Senate campaign tried to register his dog to vote. Yes, you are reading that correctly. The Albuquerque Journal:
Thom Tolbert, the husband of Wilson staffer Heather N. Wade, apologized Thursday and said his wife wasn't aware that he'd registered Buddy, their black labrador retriever, to vote.
"I made a mistake, and I want to apologize to Bernalillo County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver, my wife, who was not aware of my actions, and the public," Tolbert said in a written statement. "I will take full responsibility for my actions."
The case began when Tolbert told KOB-TV this week that he had registered his dog to vote as a way to expose how easy it is to submit fake information.
7) New Hampshire's attorney general is threatening legal action against some polling firms over a state law against spreading negative information through poll questions, the New York Times reports.
6) Chad Condit, the son of former Rep. Gary Condit, is eyeing an independent bid for Congress in California's 10th District.
5) In the wake of the Senate's rejection of the Blunt amendment on Thursday, women Democratic Senate candidates are making a joint fundraising swing out west. The Los Angeles Times:
The tour will bring almost all of the 11 Democratic female candidates -- six incumbent senators and five challengers -- for stops in Los Angeles, Seattle and Denver, including one hosted by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey and Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple's Steve Jobs, in San Francisco.
4) A federal court has designated May 29
(the day after Memorial Day weekend) as the date of the Texas primary, with any necessary runoffs coming on July 31. The summer dates should mean lower turnout and should also be a boost for the chances of former state Solicitor General Ted Cruz
3) An interesting campaign finance story in Politico
this morning: Some donors to the Democracy Alliance, a very influential club of big money Democratic donors, are upset about the group's focus on electoral politics, specifically the presidential race. Critics say the group is shifting away from its original policy-driven goals.
2) A new Quinnipiac poll out on Friday morning shows a very tight race in Ohio, with Rick Santorum
leading Mitt Romney
35 to 31 percent, which is within the margin of error.
1) There were some major developments in the Maine Senate race on Thursday. Democratic Rep. Mike Michaud said he is not running
. In the wake of his announcement, keep a close eye on Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree
, who is considering a bid. Democrats worried about the two running against one another, because it would mean opening up two House seats. Now, that won't happen.
Meanwhile, over on the Republican side, state Senate President Kevin Raye
, who is already running in Michaud's 2nd District, acknowledged
to the Lewiston Sun-Journal
that he'd received calls from the National Republican Senatorial Committee.
With Michaud running in the 2nd, Raye could be tempted to test his chances in the Senate race. If MIchaud was leaving, there would be a better argument for Raye to stay in the ME-02 race, given that it would become an open seat contest.