Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* At the conclusion of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) yesterday, attendees participated in a 2024 straw poll: Donald Trump finished first with 59 percent support. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was second with 28 percent, followed by former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at 2 percent.
* As part of the CPAC gathering, Trump spoke on Saturday night and strongly suggested he’d be a candidate for the third consecutive cycle. “We did it twice, and we’ll do it again,” the former president said, as part of a lie about the number of times he won. “We’re going to be doing it again a third time.”
* The latest Washington Post/ABC News poll left little doubt that Republicans are well positioned for big gains in this year’s midterm election cycle: On the generic congressional ballot, the GOP leads Democrats, 49 percent to 42 percent.
* In the wake of Republican Sen. Rick Scott unveiling a far-right policy blueprint, Democrats are already making plans to use the plan against other GOP candidates in the fall, including incumbent Sen. Marco Rubio, who’s up for re-election this year.
* While attending CPAC, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene again peddled nonsense about the 2020 election being “stolen,” though the Georgia Republican added, “Do I know how? No, I don’t know how.”
* In Minnesota’s congressional special election, Richard Painter, a former ethics attorney in the Bush/Cheney White House, announced that he will be a Democratic candidate this year. It will be Painter’s second bid for elected office, following a failed U.S. Senate candidacy in 2018.
* And the recent efforts to bar Rep. Madison Cawthorn from seeking a second term appear to have run their course. The North Carolina Republican appears to have prevailed because his challengers do not live in the state's newly redrawn congressional district.