7) Viral video alert: The campaign of Sen. Scott Brown
, R-Mass , released a Web ad
titled "Let America Be America Again." The ad replays President Obama
's comments that entrepreneurs aren't entirely responsible for their own successes, with Elizabeth Warren
's earlier comments expressing similar views. The 2-minute video starts by featuring past presidents extolling the American free-enterprise system.
6) Tale of the fundraising tape
: Republicans have received 56 percent of contributions from corporate super PACs and employees this election cycle -- a turnaround from 2008, when corporate PACs and employees gave Democrats 55 percent of their donations. It's a sign that corporations are much less ideological than commonly portrayed - most like to bet on the winners, and they're anticipating Republicans will have a good shot at taking back the White House and the Senate.
5) The New York Times profiles
one of the biggest players in the world of Republican super PACs - American Crossroads political director Carl Forti
From the NYT: "After years in the Republican Party trenches, Mr. Forti, 40, is now a consultant and strategist for the biggest of the outside groups and "super PACs" that are rapidly displacing parties as the means for raising and spending vast amounts of political money.
"In those roles, his work embodies the coordinated punch brought by like-minded groups to the effort to oust President Obama and give Republicans full control of Congress.
"And as a veteran of Mr. Romney's inner circle, he brings to the effort a keen understanding of the Romney campaign's needs even as he is barred by campaign finance law from working directly with it."
4) A convention-themed story
we hear every four years: "In an effort to control demonstrations and prevent disturbances, officials in Tampa are taking unusual steps that they say will help ensure public safety but that many demonstrators and civil liberties advocates say will place unacceptable limits on public dissent."
3) George W. Bush won't be attending
the Republican National Convention. Neither will Rep. Roscoe Bartlett
, R-Md, facing his toughest campaign since being elected to Congress.
2) Mitt Romney
will be spending ten days abroad on an upcoming trip overseas that is filled with political significance. He will be traveling to Britain, Israel and Poland to "establish a solid foreign policy doctrine that distinguishes him in a meaningful way from the president," the New York Times writes
. He will meet with the leaders of all three countries, other government officials, opposition leaders, and at least one U.S. ambassador. He plans to attend the opening ceremony of the Olympics, visit sites of historical significance, and hold public events in at least two of the countries. The Wall Street Journal reports
that "the trip is less about weighing in with policy proposals on those tensions, and more about celebrating American allies, an area where many conservatives believe President Barack Obama has fallen short."
Meanwhile, Romney's foreign policy team is filled with both "neoconservative" hawks and more-moderate voices, the Wall Street Journal writes
, making it challenging to discern how Romney as president would handle a slate of emerging foreign policy challenges.
1) The Wall Street Journal reports
that the Obama campaign "may enter the season's final stretch confronting hard choices: paring salaries, scaling back advertising or pulling out of swing states," because of their high burn rate of spending over the last month. Obama has been outraised by Romney over the last two months, but "spent twice as much as Romney in June, as his campaign purchased more TV ads, paid more than twice as many employees and spent millions of dollars on public-opinion polls." Obama and the DNC now have less cash-on-hand for the final campaign stretch, banking $147 million at the end of last month, compared to $170 million for Romney and the RNC.