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MI-Sen: Hardly a surprise at this point, but private Christian school entrepreneur Clark Durant says he'll file with the FEC "very shortly" and make a formal entry into the GOP primary soon. I still have no takers on the other side of my bet that Pete Hoekstra won't be the Republican nominee....

NM-Sen: It's hard to know how much this sort of thing matters, but a handful of local AFSCME chapters (representing 2,000 members) have decided to back Hector Balderas rather than Martin Heinrich in the Democratic primary, even though national AFSCME endorsed the latter.

OH-Sen: Though he filed FEC paperwork back on April 6, Republican state Treasurer Josh Mandel still hasn't filed his financial disclosure forms — which were due no later than May 15, so, over 90 days ago. This guy is the state treasurer, right? Of all the jobs to hold and yet be unable to file financial reports….

OK-Sen: Open seat fans, fire up your calendars! GOP Sen. Tom Coburn won't seek re-election… in 2016. This is actually just a re-affirmation of a pledge he made while running for his second term last year, but with Coburn, you can probably take it to the bank. Unlike most of his brethren from the class of 1994, he actually upheld a three-term pledge after winning a House seat and declined to run again in 2000.

VA-Sen: Ultra-right wing AG Ken Cuccinelli, generally thought to be seriously considering a bid for the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2013, suggested in a new interview with the Washington Post that he might run against freshman Sen. Mark Warner in 2014 instead. Such a move would allow Cuccinelli to avoid a primary fight with LG Bill Bolling, who is indeed running for governor.


AZ-08: Republican state Sen. Frank Antenori just filed paperwork to run for Congress… sorta. Oddly, he's creating a 527 (spotted by none other than Greg Giroux, of course), and I don't see anything new from him at the FEC. Antenori ran once before the 8th CD in 2006, losing in the GOP primary; he previously said he was interested in the same seat, but wouldn't run if Gabby Giffords seeks re-election.

CA-06: Dem Rep. Doris Matsui says she'll seek re-election in the new 6th (she represents the old 5th).

CA-44: Elected just a couple of months ago in the old 36th CD, Dem Rep. Janice Hahn has said she'll seek re-election in the new 44th instead. It doesn't overlap with much of her current turf, though it does contain her home town of San Pedro. It's also crowded with other Democrats: Laura Richardson hopes to continue her (rather troubled) congressional career here, and Assemblyman Isadore Hall is also running. I wonder if Hall might instead choose to seek re-election, since he can still seek one more term in the Assembly.

FL-11: Why are Republicans so interested in this district? We already mentioned that Hillsborough County Commissioner Mark Sharpe has decided to take on Dem Rep. Kathy Castor in this decidedly blue district, but it turns out another GOPer is also thinking about a run: state Rep. Shawn Harrison.

MI-02: State Rep. Dave Agema, best known for leading the fight to ban Sharia law in the state of Michigan, says he may challenge freshman Rep. Bill Huizenga in the GOP primary. Agema adds that he'll decide by October.

NM-01: Bernalillo County Commissioner Michelle Lujan Grisham announced she'd join the field of Democrats hoping to succeed Rep. Martin Heinrich, who is running for Senate. Her opening remarks:

“I’m running for Congress because we are under attack in this country. A band of right-wing radicals in Congress has hijacked our country and put the interests of their corporate masters ahead of the middle class, seniors and the most vulnerable among us.”

Sounds like she might split the left-leaning vote with state Sen. Eric Griego, giving former Albuquerque Mayor (and absolute d-bag) Marty Chavez a better shot at the nomination. I sure as hell hope not. (You may remember Lujan Grisham from her run in the 2008 primary when this seat was also open. She finished third, well behind Heinrich, with 24% of the vote.)

OR-01: Filing has closed in the special election to replace Rep. David Wu, with eight Democrats and five Republicans submitting paperwork. None of the new entrants (who are mostly Some Dudes) are likely to affect the outcomes of either the D or R primaries on Nov. 8. For the Democrats, eight have filed, but the top three remain unchanged: Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian, state Rep. Brad Witt, and state Sen. Suzanne Bonamici. On the Republican side, 2010 nominee Rob Cornilles still looks like the frontrunner. The general election is Jan. 31, 2012.

PA-09: A source "close to" Mark Critz tells The Hill's Cameron Joseph that Democratic congressman is thinking about taking on Republican Bill Shuster, rather than squaring off against fellow Dem Jason Altmire in a primary (assuming the two get mashed up in redistricting). Thing is, we've heard this story before. The last time it came up (a couple of months ago), Shira Toeplitz explained that the idea of a Critz challenge to Shuster "has widely been viewed as a power play by Critz to ensure he gets a favorable district that most likely includes Johnstown," Critz's hometown. I doubt much has changed since then.

TX-32, TX-24 (?): Former TV reporter (and teabagger) Grant Stinchfield says he's running for Congress, though it's not clear where. Stinchfield lives in fellow Republican Pete Sessions' 32nd district, but says he isn't running against him. Politics1 lists Stinchfield as opposing another GOPer, TX-24's Kenny Marchant.

WI-01: In response to a report in the Weekly Standard which said Paul Ryan was reconsidering a run for president, a spokesman says no, he ain't.

Other Races:

• WI Recall: In case you missed it, Democrats held on to both of their seats in the final round of recalls last night in Wisconsin. Jim Holperin turned back Kim Simac by a about a ten-point margin, while Bob Wirch beat Jonathan Steitz by 16.

Grab Bag:

NRCC: Some more NRCC robocalls… they really are a good way to get a press release printed up by at least one of the Hill publications. Just one question: Why is Kathy Castor on this list? Is there something we don't know about her vulnerability? (See FL-11 item above.)

Redistricting Roundup:

CA Redistricting: The other day, we mentioned the possibility that Republicans might try to overturn the new state's new redistricting maps via ballot measure. Now, apparently, a new group called "Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting" is planning to do just that. Their main target it the state Senate plan, which could give Democrats the two-thirds majority they've been desperately seeking for some time, though they may also go after the congressional map. Organizers would need half a million signatures for each map, and the initiatives wouldn't go before voters until Nov. 2012.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Wed Aug 17, 2011 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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