* The Associated Press’s latest count puts JoAnne Kloppenburg ahead by an absurdly slim lead of 204 votes, but keep in mind that those results are unofficial.
* On a conference call organized by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Wisconsin Dem Senate leader Mark Miller responded to the absurd GOP spin that the closeness of the race somehow vindicates Scott Walker:
“JoAnne Kloppenburg didn’t have a prayer six weeks ago. And now the support for her has exploded to the point where it’s a dead heat between her and an established incumbent.”
* Another key factoid from the Wisconsin Dem leader: “According to his math, Kloppenburg won by a 60-40 margin in the district of Dan Kapanke, the first Republican that recall petitions were submitted against.”
* The National Journal’s Kevin Brennan gets it right: Even if David Prosser does somehow hang on, Walker and Republicans are still the losers.
* With budget talks still stalled, John Boehner ups the pressure by indicating he will move forward with a temporary government funding measure that includes $12 billion in cuts.
* The latest from Harry Reid: “The Republican leadership has the tea party screaming so loudly in its right ear that it can’t hear what the vast majority of the country demands.”
* Obama again summons Reid and Boehner to the White House, a measure of both how much Obama wants to avert a shutdown and the degree to which he hopes to play the role of peacekeeper.
* Yet another poll finds the public divided on who to blame for any eventual shutdown, suggesting (I think) that all parties have an incentive to avoid one at all costs.
* Things that make us go hmmm: National Republicans are circulating this post by Jennifer Rubin arguing that if Dems go on offense against Paul Ryan’s Medicare proposals, it could put vulnerable Dems in a bad spot.
* As Rachel Weiner notes, if Republican strategists are worried that Dem attacks on Ryan’s proposals could bear fruit, it’s because no one knows better than they do that attacks over Medicare work brilliantly.
* Takedown of the day: Paul Krugman appears to catch the Heritage Foundation scrubbing the ridiculous unemployment forecast out of its widely-criticized report forming the basis of Paul Ryan’s proposals.
* Steve Benen has a thoughtful post making the case that we should grant Obama some time (but not too much) to fashion a good and aggressive response to the Paul Ryan proposals.
* The news that Glenn Beck is leaving Fox was presented as a happy-happy affair, but John Aravosis reminds us that a month ago, Fox officials were privately contemplating life after Beck in light of his declining ratings.
* And if NPR’s board of directors really forced its CEO to resign before the full James O’Keefe bogus video sting transcript was reviewed, it’s hard to see why anyone should go out on a limb defending them.
What else is happening?