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Hotline Sort: When Campaign Mailers Talk

5) The New York Times gives the Virginia Senate race front-page treatment, spotlighting the attempts from both the Kaine and Allen campaigns to win over voters who back the other party's presidential nominee. There won't be many split-ticket voters in Virginia, but most strategists believe there would be more Romney voters who would vote for Tim Kaine, rather than Obama voters supporting George Allen. 4) There's no intraparty love for Maine Senate Democratic nominee Cynthia Dill. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has been virtually silent on the race, quietly supporting independent Angus King. So she wrote DSCC chair Patty Murray a letter: "With this historic opportunity to turn Maine's red seat blue and ensure a progressive agenda this November, the DSCC must not abandon its principles and supporters." The DSCC's response: They're monitoring the race. King is the heavy favorite in the contest. A Critical Insights Poll conducted earlier this month showed King winning 55 percent of the vote, with Dill only at 7 percent. 3) Great read from the NYT's John Harwood, on the proliferation of campaign ads featuring journalists. Harwood notes that while campaigns once avoided using such footage to avoid controversy and legal threats, they're now much more confident that there's nothing that reporters uncomfortable with the practice can do about it. There's also a bonus must-watch bit of footage linked in the story: Harwood appearing in a campaign ad for Robert F. Kennedy during the 1968 presidential campaign. 2) Mitt Romney's campaign is going on air with a 30-second version of the Web video that went viral Thursday. It contrasts Obama's comments that entrepreneurs aren't entirely responsible for their own successes with the comments of small business owner Jack Gilchrist, who argues "It's time we had somebody who believes in us, someone who believes that achievement should be rewarded, not punished." It's a powerful spot that crystallizes the Romney campaign's message this week. Meanwhile, Priorities USA is up with a new ad, in Spanish, attacking Romney for not releasing his tax returns. 1) And the Boston Globe is still pushing hard over Romney's precise role at Bain Capital since leaving his full-time job to run the Olympics. From the paper: "Interviews with a half-dozen of Romney's former partners and associates, as well as public records, show that he was not merely an absentee owner during this period. He signed dozens of company documents, including filings with regulators on a vast array of Bain's investment entities. And he drove the complex negotiations over his own large severance package, a deal that was critical to the firm's future without him, according to his former associates. Indeed, by remaining CEO and sole shareholder, Romney held on to his leverage in the talks that resulted in his generous 10-year retirement package, according to former associates." Steven Shepard contributed.

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