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Hotline Sort: Mourdock's Newfound Moderation Hotline Sort: Mourdock's Newfound Moderation

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Hotline Sort: Mourdock's Newfound Moderation

7) In Utah's 4th District, Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson and his GOP opponent Mia Love faced off in their first debate Wednesday night. The Salt Lake Tribune:

Rep. Jim Matheson accused Republican candidate Mia Love of taking a slash-and-burn approach to the federal budget, hurting police and college students, while Love painted Matheson as a big-spending, pro-government Democrat in their first debate Wednesday. "There's two different directions we can take," Love said. "My opponent is supporting Barack Obama. Which [means] everything ends up with bigger spending, more borrowing and more debt. I've got the support of Mitt Romney [who will] make sure we champion the private sector so you can have a job." Matheson countered that he has taken a pro-business approach in Congress, which is why groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and National Federation of Independent Businesses, which typically support Republicans, have endorsed him.

6) Democratic outside groups jumping into the Arizona Senate race, a day after an internal Richard Carmona poll showed the Democrat in a dead heat with GOP Rep. Jeff Flake. VoteVets.org and Majority PAC are launching a $280,000 ad buy hitting Flake on veterans issues (something Carmona also went after his opponent on in a recent ad). 5) The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is up with a another television ad painting Indiana GOP nominee Richard Mourdock as extreme. It hits him on Social Security and Medicare, saying Mourdock thinks a "tea party plan to end Medicare as we know it 'doesn't go far enough.'" Mourdock, meanwhile, is trying to make his candidacy more attractive to moderate Republicans. The AP reports that in place of Mourdock's unstinting conservative agenda in the primary "are support for parts of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, pledges to protect Democratic-championed programs like Social Security and Medicare, and even the once-shunned notion of compromise." 4) Democratic Virginia Senate nominee Tim Kaine has a new ad out today, attacking GOP opponent George Allen on Social Security and Medicare. People in the ad hit Allen for voting to partially privatize Social Security, and to cut Medicare. Meanwhile, Workers Voice is making a $54,000 online ad buy hitting Allen on, among other things, the infamous "Macaca" comment. 3) First debate tonight between GOP Sen. Dean Heller and Democratic Rep. Shelley Berkley in the Nevada Senate race: It'll air at 8:00 p.m. local time on PBS in Nevada, and on CSPAN. 2) The National Republican Senatorial Committee, which pledged it wouldn't support Rep. Todd Akin financially after his comments about "legitimate rape," shifted its position on Wednesday, a day after the deadline for him to withdraw from the ballot had passed. They did not say yet whether they'd begin pouring money into Missouri. 1) President Obama is up with a 2-minute long ad featuring him speaking to the camera, talking plans for a second term. "It's time for a new economic patriotism," says Obama. The ad will air in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio and Virginia. And Romney released a new spot saying Obama "wages war on coal while we lose jobs to China." Scott Bland contributed

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