U.S. Senate news:
- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) was quoted in a soon-to-be-released book on the 2008 Presidential election as saying that Barack Obama was "light-skinned", "with no Negro dialect, unless he wanted to have one." GOP leaders point to the double-standard in how Reid is being treated for his comments and how Republican Sen. Trent Lott was after his comments several years ago. Reid continues to trail GOP opponents by 5-10 points.
- Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT) announced that he will not run for reelection this year. He had been facing a very difficult race, with the top Republican candidates leading him by up to 10 percentage points. His stepping aside may make it easier for the Democrats to hold the seat.
- Scott Brown, Republican candidate in the special election for Ted Kennedy's old seat, is now neck and neck with Democrat Martha Coakley. Brown held a "money-bomb" today, with a goal of raising $500,000. However, by mid-afternoon, over $750,000 had been brought in, and the current goal is now $1,000,000 (at 7pm CST, $878,000 had been raised).>
- Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) trails relatively unknown GOP candidates by 10-12 points in the latest polls.
- Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) announced that he will not seek reelection, in a move that has drawn sitting Republican Governor John Hoeven into the race. Hoeven had been beating Dorgan by substantial margins in recent polls.
- Democrats still are on pace to lose a ton of seats in the midterm election this year. Rep. Parker Griffith of Alabama switched parties shortly before Christmas, reminiscent of the party switches that took place in 1994.
- Rep. Dan Boren (D-OK) believes that the balance of power in the House will be very close, but that due to that he will have the most influence he's ever had, no matter who is in the majority.
- State Rep. and Majority Floor Leader Tad Jones (R-Claremore) announced his intention to run for Labor Commissioner, joining fellow Republican Jason Reese as the announced opponents for Democrat incumbent Lloyd Fields.
- The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs (OCPA) is sponsoring a news site, with a focus on the State Capitol and governmental affairs. CapitolBeatOK.com launched at the end of December.
- Apparently, parts of Oklahoma experienced an extremely rare lake-effect snow while I was gone...
- Congresswoman Mary Fallin (R-CD5) leads State Sen. Randy Brogdon (R-Owasso) by about 50% in the latest gubernatorial election poll. She also cruises to victory over Democrats Drew Edmondson and Jari Askins.
... and that's about all I can remember to post. Let me know if I missed something big while I was in the Mexican Riviera, taking in the 80° weather!