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:
* The newly-released New York Times/CBS News poll shows President Obama’s approval rating down sharply over the last month, but he still leads each of the Republican presidential hopefuls in head-to-head match-ups. Of particular interest: Obama leads Mitt Romney by eight points among self-identified independents.
* It’s a little late in the game, but Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley (R) threw his support to Rick Santorum’s presidential campaign today. [Update: the governor’s office has clarified that Bentley voted for Santorum in today’s primary, but that does not necessarily constitute an endorsement.]
* A remarkable 91% of all GOP primary ads aired in Alabama and Mississippi in recent weeks were paid for by super PACs, not the candidates’ campaigns.
* In D.C., several hundred lobbyists and lobbying political action committees have lined up to support the Romney campaign.
* Trying to justify his presence in the race, Newt Gingrich told an Alabama talk show this morning that it’s beneficial for him to join Santorum in a “tag-team” against Romney. It’s unclear if even Gingrich believes this.
* In advance of Illinois’ March 20 primary, a Chicago Tribune/WGN-TV poll shows Romney with a slight edge over Santorum, 35% to 31%.
* Speaking of Illinois, unhinged freshman Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) is struggling badly to raise money in advance of his re-election bid.
* Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D) still doesn’t want to say if he’ll run outside of his native Ohio.
* And in Arizona, Democratic Senate candidate Don Bivens released a new ad yesterday, targeting Republican Rep. Jeff Flake, and hoping to take advantage of the controversy surrounding Rush Limbaugh. It’s probably not the last 2012 spot we’ll see highlighting the right-wing radio host.