Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that won’t necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:
* A new Gallup poll shows the favorability ratings for both major political parties dropping below 40%, including a sharp drop for Republicans since the midterm elections last fall. It’s the first time since Gallup began asking the question 23 years ago that both parties’ support has dropped this low.
* Despite strong public support for a minimum-wage increase, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) told a New Hampshire audience over the weekend that he does not support the popular idea.
* With just one day remaining until Israeli elections, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, fearing defeat, has begun lashing out at “a huge international effort,” which he claims is “partnering up with leftist organizations here and also with media figures” to defeat him.
* New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) presidential ambitions have faltered of late, but he’s nevertheless telling party insiders that he’s ready to make “overhauling” Medicare and Social Security the centerpiece of his national campaign. Nothing helps a struggling candidate more than promising to cut popular social-insurance programs, right?
* Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) is still quite cautious when taking jabs at Jeb Bush, but he’s getting less subtle. He said late last week, “I just think voters are going to look at this and say, ‘If we’re running against Hillary Clinton, we’ll need a name from the future – not a name from the past – to win.’”
* Apparently convinced there isn’t enough money in political campaigns, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) intends to push eliminating caps on contributions altogether.
* Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) briefly slipped over the weekend, referring to himself as a presidential “candidate” on Twitter. The tweet was soon after deleted – Paul’s campaign is still officially unannounced.
* Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) has announced he won’t participate in the Iowa Straw Poll, dismissing it as a “political sideshow.” Don’t be surprised if other Republican candidates follow suit.
* And former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), gearing up for his second White House bid, told voters the other day he believes President Obama has possibly “intentionally turned his back to evil and allowed it to prosper around the world.”