Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* In Iowa, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently picked up endorsements from Gov. Kim Reynolds and conservative activist Bob Vander Plaats, but it’s not changing the race: The latest NBC News/Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll found Donald Trump leading the Republican field in the Hawkeye State with 51% support, followed by DeSantis with 19%. The same survey found Former Ambassador Nikki Haley running third with 16%.
* Speaking of polling, the latest Wall Street Journal poll found Trump leading incumbent President Joe Biden in a hypothetical general-election match-up, 47% to 43%.
* In case that weren’t enough to cause Democratic agita, new polling from CNN found Trump leading Biden in Michigan by 10 points, and in Georgia by five points. The Democratic ticket narrowly won both of these states in 2020.
* In Houston, Democratic state Sen. John Whitmire defeated Democratic Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee by a surprisingly wide margin in the city’s mayoral race, prevailing by roughly 29 points. Ahead of Saturday’s runoff election, Whitmire ran 9 points ahead of Jackson Lee in the first round of balloting.
* On a related note, it’s worth noting that Jackson Lee can still run for the congressional seat she currently holds, but the incumbent would have to move quickly, and she’d likely face opposition from the candidates who’ve spent months running for what they expected to be an open seat.
* Why did Trump publicly warn Republican Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Josh Hawley of Missouri that they might face tough re-election challenges next year? I have a hunch it’s because neither one of the GOP senators has endorsed Trump’s 2024 candidacy.
* Despite the fact that Trump abandoned former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy when the outgoing congressman needed him, McCarthy has now endorsed the former president and opened the door to serving in a possible Cabinet role.
* And after four relatively inconsequential presidential primary debates, the Republican National Committee has reportedly decided to pull back from its role overseeing the debate process. There might yet be more debates, but they’ll be organized independently of the RNC.