Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* In Quinnipiac’s new national poll, Democrats lead Republicans on the generic congressional ballot, 49% to 40%. That nine-point margin is down a bit from the 13-point lead Dems had in the same poll a few weeks ago.
* DCCC Chairman Ben Ray Lujan (D-N.M.) will tell his House Democratic colleagues today that the party will contest all but 12 of the 238 districts currently held by Republicans.
* Former Vice President Joe Biden, reportedly weighing a 2020 presidential bid, addressed the House Democratic retreat yesterday, and by all accounts, he received a warm welcome.
* Jeanette Manfra, the head of cybersecurity at the Department of Homeland Security, told NBC News yesterday she believes Russians successfully penetrated the voter registration rolls of several U.S. states prior to the 2016 presidential election.
* The Public Policy Institute of California released a new poll this week, which found Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) as the top candidates in this year’s gubernatorial race. The same survey showed Sen. Dianne Feinstein with a sizable lead over her Democratic rival, Kevin de Leon, 46% to 17%.
* Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R), rumored to be interested in running for his old job again, announced this week that he’s stepping down as head of the Financial Services Roundtable. In the wake of his failed presidential 2012 campaign, Pawlenty became a leading advocate for Wall Street’s biggest and most powerful banks – which probably isn’t a great launching pad for a statewide campaign in Minnesota.
* Former President George W. Bush delivered remarks in the United Arab Emirates yesterday and agreed that there was “pretty clear evidence that the Russians meddled” in the 2016 U.S. election. “It’s problematic that a foreign nation is involved in our election system,” he added. “Our democracy is only as good as people trust the results.”