Afternoon Fix: Bill Clinton calls Perry a ‘good-looking rascal’

at 05:17 PM ET, 08/15/2011

Bill Clinton (sort of) likes Rick Perry, Eric Cantor is endorsing George Allen, Christine O’Donnell is back and White House officials say they want to get confrontational.

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WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:

* Former president Bill Clinton said at a firefighters’ conference in New York today that Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) is “a good-looking rascal” with opinions on government that are “crazy.” Meanwhile, Perry used a line on the campaign trail in Waterloo, Iowa last night that is raising some eyebrows, saying, “If this shirt has a few wrinkles in it, it’s not my wife’s fault.”

* House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) has endorsed Republican George Allen in the Virginia Senate race, despite their disagreement on the debt-ceiling deal. (Allen said he would have voted against it.) Allen was initially seen as vulnerable to a challenge from the right, but he has taken a conservative tack and tea party challenger Jamie Radtke has not caught on so far.

* The White House is pushing back on a New York Times story from this weekend, in which top advisers David Plouffe and Richard Daley were depicted as favoring a non-confrontational approach to the GOP. An official told The Plum Line that both Daley and Plouffe support rhetoric that blames Republicans for opposing job creation efforts and accuses the GOP of putting party before country.

* The new California map has gotten a final stamp of approval from the Citizens Redistricting Commission, a bipartisan panel. Some Republicans are complaining about the new lines and are considering putting a referendum to voters that would have the state Supreme Court draw new lines.

* A Club for Growth poll of the 2012 Wisconsin Senate race shows former governor Tommy Thompson leading former Rep. Mark Neumann 40 percent to 34 percent in the Republican primary. The conservative group, which opposes Thompson, argues that support for the longtime politician is soft. He only gets a “very favorable” rating from 26 percent of Republicans, far less than Gov. Scott Walker (R) or Sen. Ron Johnson (R).

WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:

* Former Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell (R) is back — her memoir just came out, and now she’s holding a rally in Virginia in conjunction with two tea party groups. The event is on August 18th in Arlington; state House candidate Ken Vaughn, state delegate Bob Marshall, state Senate candidate Bishop E.W. Jackson, and longtime GOP activists Morton and Helen Blackwell will also be in attendance. Allen and Radtke both had “conflicting schedules.”

* President Obama is on a three-day bus tour of the Midwest, barnstorming in support of his policies in a way many liberals have chided him for failing to do. “You’ve got to send a message to Washington that it’s time for the games to stop. It’s time to put country first,” Obama said.

* Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) has endorsed Bob Turner (R) in the special election for the seat held by ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.). Turner faces state Assemblyman David Weprin (D) on Sept. 13th. Turner also has the backing of former Democratic mayor Ed Koch.

* Tim Pawlenty’s New Hampshire campaign director, Sarah Crawford Stewart, is joining Jon Huntsman’s campaign as a paid consultant. Rival campaigns are racing to scoop up some of Pawlenty’s supporters in early primary states.

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