Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-Fla.) has died at the age of 84, following a fight with pancreatic cancer. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) will schedule a special election to fill the vacancy, and in the interim, the House Democratic conference is down to 218 members.
* The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released its 2022 target list this morning, featuring 22 Republican-held U.S. House seats that Democrats believe they can flip. As the Washington Post noted, "Eleven of the districts were carried by [President Joe] Biden, and all but three — the two South Florida seats and Texas's majority-Latino 23rd District — grew more Democratic from 2016 to 2020."
* Justice Democrats, the progressive group known for supporting primary challenges against incumbent congressional Democrats, is throwing its support behind Odessa Kelly in her primary race against Rep. Jim Cooper (D) in Tennessee. Politico's report added, "It is the first primary challenge unveiled by Justice Democrats for the 2022 cycle."
* On a related note, NBC News reported yesterday that seven House Democrats who lost last year "are teaming up to launch a new political action committee aimed at protecting moderate Democratic incumbents." The new entity is called "Shield PAC," and it's a project launched by the Third Way think tank.
* As Democratic officials try to get the word out about the party's COVID relief package, they're getting some help from outside allies. American Bridge 21st Century announced this week that it's running new television ads in Georgia and in Arizona focusing on the impact of the American Rescue Plan.
* Speaking of Georgia, Gwinnett County Solicitor Brian Whiteside said yesterday that he does not intend to prosecute anyone for giving water to voters in line to cast a ballot, despite the newly passed Republican state law. "It's unjust to criminalize giving someone some water," Whiteside said.
* And though conservative media personality Eric Bolling considered a Republican primary campaign against Rep. Nancy Mace in South Carolina next year, he announced yesterday that he won't be a candidate, at least not in 2022.