Texas set to have its primary at the end of May, Obama above 50 percent in CNN polling, Hispanic Republicans upset and Santorym getting the Megadeth vote.

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* Texas should plan for a May 29th primary, a federal judge said today, because a dispute over redistricting probably won’t be resolved in time for an earlier date. That’s bad news for the state, which hoped to have more relevance in the presidential process, and for former House speaker Newt Gingrich, who banked on racking up delegates there.

* A new CNN poll has President Obama back at a 50 percent approval rating, echoing a Post poll from last week. Together the surveys show that Obama’s public image has rebounded; he now hovers at a critical threshold under which his reelection prospects would be significantly diminished.

* Former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum has won the ever-elusive Megadeth endorsement and with it, presumably, the whole thrash metal Republican bloc. “You know, I think Santorum has some presidential qualities, and I'm hoping that if it does come down to it, we'll see a Republican in the White House... and that it's Rick Santorum,” frontman Dave Mustaine told MusicRadar.com.

* Hispanic Republicans are crying foul after Obama campaign manager Jim Messina tweeted a joke authored by a Post columnist: “Line of the day from WAPO's Dana Milbank: ‘The chimichanga? It may be the only thing Republicans have left to offer Latinos.’” Jennifer Sevilla Korn of the Republican-backing Hispanic Leadership Network called the joke “insulting” and “ridiculous.” Messina tweeted a follow-up non-apology, saying ”Tweeting someone else’s words caused a stir, but the GOP is on the wrong side of every Hispanic voter priority.”


* Contraception policy has wormed its way into the Massachusetts Senate race. Sen. Scott Brown (R) is supporting a bill that would allow any business to deny coverage of any prescription or procedure that conflicts with the owner’s beliefs. Elizabeth Warren (D) is hammering her opponent on the legislation, arguing that it could be used to justify any withdrawal of coverage.

* Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) saved $43,000 in taxes last year thanks to a half-dozen cows on land he leases out, taking advantage of Florida’s generous “greenbelt” law. "I pay all the taxes owed on the pastureland," he told the Tampa Bay Times. “This pasture has been in my family since 1924, and it's been a cow pasture since 1950.”

* Santorum benefactor Foster Freiss, a wealthy investor, said he’s committed to helping his candidate through Super Tuesday and all the way to the convention, if he makes it that far. “If money is needed I want to be helpful,” he told ABC News. “That’s what I’ll say, but I won’t say to what extent.”

* In the tough Democratic primary for Maryland’s 6th district, state Sen. Rob Garagiola is out with a web ad attacking his rival, financier John Delaney, for supporting a Republican in 2010. Delaney made the maximum legal contribution to now-Rep. Andy Harris (R), a tea party supporter. Garagiola’s campaign responded by pointing out that Delaney has raised lots of money for top Maryland Democrats and is a “lifelong Democrat.” “It is undisputable that John Delaney has been one of the strongest, most committed Democratic Party supporters, and it is a shame that Rob Garagiola resorts to such desperate attacks,” the Delaney campaign said.


Nazis. From the moon. Moon Nazis.

With Aaron Blake