Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* In Arizona, a new survey from Public Policy Polling shows Sen. Jeff Flake (R) with an approval rating of just 18%. The same poll shows Donald Trump with a 44% rating in the Grand Canyon State, which the president narrowly won last fall.
* The AARP, which was staunchly opposed to Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, has launched new ads thanking Sens. Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and John McCain for opposing their party’s health care legislation.
* Republican Rep. Diane Black, a four-term congresswoman, kicked off her gubernatorial campaign in Tennessee yesterday, and is well positioned to be the 2018 frontrunner.
* With Rep. Lou Barletta (R) almost certain to run for the U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania next year, Rep. Mike Kelly (R) announced yesterday he’s passing on the statewide race and will run for re-election to the House instead.
* Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) picked up her first challenger this week, with state Rep. Geoff Diehl (R) kicking off his campaign. Diehl is perhaps best known for helping lead Donald Trump’s campaign in Massachusetts – a state the president lost by 27 points.
* In South Carolina, gubernatorial hopeful Catherine Templeton (R) raised a few eyebrows this week declaring at a forum that she’s “proud of the Confederacy” and pledging not to “rewrite history” by removing Confederate monuments.
* And in New York, former Rep. Michael Grimm (R) is reportedly gearing up for a political comeback, eyeing another congressional campaign despite having recently spent seven months in federal prison for tax fraud.