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Cook Report Downgrades McCaskill's Prospects

The Cook Political Report on Thursday downgraded Missouri Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill's re-election chances to "toss-up" after a private jet controversy that could undercut her image as a government reformer.

"There is nothing voters hate more than politicians who don't pay their taxes or what voters perceive as their fair share of taxes," Cook Political Report's Jennifer Duffy writes.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 3:07pm

Barbour Turns Critical Of Obama's Foreign Policy

Days after taking a pass on criticizing President Obama's leadership in Libya, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour is cautioning against the incursion and accusing the president of a lack of leadership.

Appearing on "The Gallo Show" on Jackson's 97.3FM Thursday morning, Barbour questioned the reason for the operation, edging closer to the GOP field's consensus criticism of Obama.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 1:30pm

Bachmann Prepares To Kick Off Presidential Campaign

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is preparing to kick off a presidential campaign.

On Thursday, as Bachmann was touring Iowa, CNN reported that the congresswoman plans to file exploratory papers for a presidential campaign by June.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 12:23pm

Franks Skips Border Security Event With Flake, McCain

Sean Sullivan wrote today on Rep. Jeff Flake's (R-Ariz.) effort to emulate Sen. John McCain's political strategy by backing away from comprehensive immigration reform as he faces the likelihood of a primary challenge from the right.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 11:22am

Granholm Explains Thinking On DNC Decision

Former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm (D) turned down the Democratic National Committee for clean energy.

Well not exactly, but Granholm told National Journal Wednesday that she decided not to run for DNC chair and instead took a position as a senior adviser with the Pew Charitable Trusts' environment group.

"Because I want to go around the country and talk about clean energy in a bipartisan way," Granholm said with a laugh when asked why she didn't want to run for the position.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 10:40am

Feinstein's Re-Elect Lower, But Approval Rating Better Than Boxer's

Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D-Calif.) re-elect rating is lower than it has been at this point in past election cycles, according to a new Field Poll, as her approval continues to hover just below 50 percent.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 9:27am

Can Flake Repeat the McCain Model?

In politics, actions speak louder than words - and Rep. Jeff Flake's (R-Ariz.) sudden evolution from immigration centrist to a border security hardliner speaks volumes, as he begins his Arizona Senate campaign.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 9:00am

Iowa GOP, ABC News Team Up For Dec. Debate

The Iowa Republican Party will join with ABC News to co-sponsor a live presidential debate from Des Moines the weekend of December 10, state party chairman Matt Strawn announced Thursday.

Strawn said this debate will be the third, and final, presidential debate co-sponsored by the Iowa GOP.

The debate will be moderated by Diane Sawyer and George Stephanopoulos and will be broadcast live on ABC both in the state and nationally.

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 8:27am

Hotline Sort: Ranking The Contenders

Welcome back to Hotline Sort. National Journal Hotline's latest Presidential Power Rankings are out, President Obama has some work to do with independents in Ohio, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) is raking in the big bucks. And fear not, whoopie pies are back in the headlines! Here's today's rundown:

Posted: Thursday, March 24, 2011 - 7:44am

Breaking Down The Health Care Polling

One year after President Obama signed his signature health care reform measure into law, two polls yield different findings about the way Americans view the law, but in each poll, Americans' opinions of the law have not changed very much over the last 12 months.

When asked as part of a CNN/Opinion Research poll if they "generally favor" or "generally oppose" the law, 59 percent of Americans said they oppose the health care law, while just 37 percent said they favor it.

Posted: Wednesday, March 23, 2011 - 2:59pm