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Thursday's Campaign Round-Up, 4.8.21

Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.


Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.

* With only a couple of months remaining before the commonwealth's 2021 primaries, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) this morning endorsed former Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D), who's hoping to return to his old job.

* In New York, Rep. Lee Zeldin (R) kicked off his gubernatorial campaign this morning, joining what's likely to become a crowded Republican primary field. Zeldin, among other things, was one of the many GOP members of Congress to vote to reject the results of the 2020 presidential election.

* Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) yesterday started backpedaling a bit on his declaration that corporations should "stay out of politics." He told reporters, "I didn't say that very artfully yesterday. They're certainly entitled to be involved in politics. They are."

* Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) yesterday signed a bipartisan bill expanding voter access in the Bluegrass State -- at least a little.

* Mississippi Secretary of State Michael Watson (R) this week suggested he's opposed to automatic voter registration because he's worried about "woke college and university students" who "will automatically be registered to vote whether they wanted to or not." Watson was referring to an executive order from President Joe Biden, which does not actually create a system of automatic voter registration.

* Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill (R) yesterday acknowledged "an inappropriate relationship" with a woman who is not his wife. Merrill, who was reportedly poised to kick off a U.S. Senate campaign, has instead decided not to seek elected office again next year.

* In North Carolina, Beaufort Mayor Rett Newton (D), a retired Air Force colonel, kicked off a U.S. Senate campaign. The Democratic mayor said he didn't intend to run -- he's working on a PhD in marine sciences -- but the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol inspired him to launch a statewide race.