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Hotline Sort: Romney Surrogate Spars With Tommy Thompson Hotline Sort: Romney Surrogate Spars With Tommy Thompson

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Hotline Sort: Romney Surrogate Spars With Tommy Thompson

6) The Romney campaign doesn't sound like it's a fan of Wisconsin Senate nominee Tommy Thompson, even though his campaign is critical in Republicans' bid to win back the Senate. On CNN, Mitt Romney surrogate and former New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu lashed out at Wisconsin GOP Senate nominee Tommy Thompson for blaming less-than-stellar poll numbers on Romney Thursday. Sununu said Thompson "sounds like Barack Obama." 5) Democratic nominee Heidi Heitkamp drops a new ad going after GOP Rep. Rick Berg in the North Dakota Senate race today. "Rick Berg is worth $24 million, but voted to cut college aid to pay for a tax break for millionaires like myself," says a man who explains his sons can't go to college without aid. 4) Coming up later this morning: The first Senate debate between Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and her GOP opponent, Rep. Todd Akin will take place at 11:45 a.m. EST (catch the livestream here). Meanwhile, The Hill reports that tea party heavyweight Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., might consider helping Akin out financially if he remains in the race after the (rapidly approaching) September 25 deadline to get off the ballot. 3) Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., and his Democratic opponent Elizabeth Warren squared off Thursday in their first of four debates. Brown came out swinging on the Native American issue, and things didn't get a whole lot friendlier from there. The Boston Globe's Glen Johnson writes that "neither backed down from the criticisms they have lodged against each other from a distance on the campaign trail." 2) The New York Times on presidential fundraising numbers:

Mitt Romney entered the final months of the presidential campaign with a cash balance of just $35 million, racing to find new large donors and rally low-dollar contributors in August even while he raised tens of millions of dollars for the Republican Party.

1) Tale of the tape: Spending on television ads for the presidential race has already surpassed two-thirds of a billion dollars.

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