Updated at 9:18 a.m.
Welcome back to Hotline Sort. Romney distances himself from Mourdock's comment, Renacci cancels bradcast TV buys, Jesse Jackson Jr. is back at Mayo, and Obama is beating Romney in Halloween mask sales.
11) Game changer? The Chattanooga Times Free Press endorsed Gary Johnson for president.
10) President Obama will beat Mitt Romney... if Halloween mask sales can accurately predict election results.
9) Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. went back to the Mayo Clinic on Tuesday for a "follow-up evaluation," after being treated for bipolar disorder there over the summer.
8) Two weeks before Election Day, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., is up with her first ad, the Los Angeles Times reports, a positive ad talking about the issues at stake in the election. Feinstein faces Republican Elizabeth Emken, who hasn't been able to gain any traction in the solidly Democratic state.
7) In Hawaii's Senate race, Democratic Rep. Mazie Hirono
is up with a new ad
hitting back at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce ads attacking her. "What they've brought to our islands in shameful," says the announcer. "News media call the Chamber's president 'Obama's tormentor.'" It highlights a clip of former GOP Gov. Linda Lingle saying she's "proud" the Chamber has focused on the race.
6) Turns out Rep. Todd Akin
, R-Mo., was actually arrested three times at abortion protests in the '80's, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports
Meanwhile, Sen. Claire McCaskill
, D-Mo., on Tuesday canceled
her campaign events for the rest of the week to spend time with her "critically ill" mother.
5) The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is up with two new IE ads attacking Republicans.
In Wisconsin, their latest spot
hits former GOP Gov. Tommy Thompson
on his lobbying career, saying he "sold out," and "wants to give tax breaks to his millionaire friends."
In North Dakota, the new commercial says GOP Rep. Rick Berg
tried to block a rule that would have forced property managers to improve fire safety while a firm he was associated with was cited with fire code violations.
4) A Quinnipiac poll out this morning shows
Democratic Rep. Chris Murphy
leading GOP opponent Linda McMahon
by 6 points in the Connecticut Senate race.
And in Massachusetts, a new WBUR-FM poll also shows Democrat Elizabeth Warren
leading GOP Sen. Scott Brown
by 6 points.
3) In Ohio's 16th District, GOP Rep. Jim Renacci
-- running against Democratic Rep. Betty Sutton
-- canceled his braodcast TV reservations through Election Day, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports
, and will focus on cable. His campaign was up for weeks before Sutton. He finished the third quarter with $1 million in the bank to her $1.2 million.
2) Des Moines Register
editor Rick Green writes
that he spoke to Obama but can't reveal what he said, because it was off the record:
The conference call lasted nearly 30 minutes and was an incredibly informative exchange of questions, answers and an insightful glimpse into the president's vision for a second term. He made a genuine and passionate case for our endorsement and for reelection.
Just two weeks before Election Day, the discussion, I believe, would have been valuable to all voters, but especially those in Iowa and around the country who have yet to decide between the incumbent Democrat and his Republican opponent.
Unfortunately, what we discussed was off-the-record. It was a condition, we were told, set by the White House.
1) Romney is distancing himself from Indiana GOP Senate nominee Richard Mourdock
the Treasurer made about pregnancy resulting from rape being something "God intended to happen."
"Gov. Romney disagrees with Richard Mourdock's comments, and they do not reflect his views," said
Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul
The DNC released a web video
using clips of Mourdocks' comments, Romney's pro-Mourdock ad, and Romney campaigning for Mourdock over the summer.