Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* In Texas’ closely watched U.S. Senate race, there’s been a flurry of recent polling, including this new Public Policy Polling survey, which shows Sen. Ted Cruz (R) leading Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D) by only three points, 48% to 45%.
* On a related note, the Cook Political Report, one of only a handful of non-partisan reports that studies campaigns at a granular level, changed its rating for the Texas race, moving it from “lean Republican” to “toss-up.”
* Alaska Gov. Bill Walker (I), in the midst of a tough re-election fight this year, announced his opposition to Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination yesterday. The move is likely intended to increase the pressure on Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), who is generally seen as undecided on the nominee.
* In New Jersey’s 7th congressional district, widely seen as a possible pick-up opportunity for Democrats, a new Monmouth University poll finds Tom Malinowski (D) leading incumbent Rep. Leonard Lance (R), 47% to 39%.
* In California’s 50th congressional district, Ammar Campa-Najjar (D) has unveiled a tough new ad targeting Rep. Duncan Hunter (R) in the wake of the congressman’s criminal indictment. In an interesting twist, the ad relies exclusively on news coverage of Hunter’s scandal that aired on Fox News.
* Speaking of California, there’s new interest in a cyber-attack that targeted Bryan Caforio’s (D) campaign website in California’s 25th congressional district. Caforio finished a competitive third in the June primary.
* And believe it or not, early voting in this year’s midterm elections begins today in four states: Minnesota, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming. Early voting in a fifth state, New Jersey, begins tomorrow.