-- U.S. Marshals on Thursday captured Matthew Frein, a 31-year old accused of ambushing two state troopers in September. Police used handcuffs from an officer who died in the attack to secure Frein, who was caught at an abandoned airport 40 miles outside of Blooming Grove, Pa. Frein had been hiding in the woods in the Pocono Mountains since the Sept. 12 ambush. (Washington Post)
-- Pentagon officials are frustrated by White House orders to keep attacks against Islamic State militants contained within strict limits. The National Security Council has given explicit instructions on which militants can be targeted and which can be trained. National Security Advisor Susan Rice is keeping close track of the fight, down to minor issues at an operational level. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel wrote a memo to Rice last week warning that the Syria strategy was sewing confusion. (Daily Beast)
-- A secularist party in Tunisia won a big victory in parliamentary elections this week, taking almost 40 percent of the vote against an Islamist party that won 32 percent. The Islamist party had led a coalition government for two years, but a weakening economy gave the secularists, Nidaa Tounes, a leg up. Nidaa Tounes will have to build a coalition to reach a majority of the 217-member assembly. (New York Times)
-- Former Boston Mayor Tom Menino died Thursday at the age of 71. The longest-serving mayor in Boston history announced in March, two months after leaving office, he had an advanced form of cancer. Menino built the most extensive political machine in modern Boston history, on a foundation of patronage and constituent services. Dubbed the "urban mechanic" and "Mayor Mumbles," Menino ran the city for 20 years without challenge. (Boston Globe, Washington Post, New York Times) Menino was the rare Italian American to win in an Irish-dominated political culture, and he did it by creating his own unbeatable coalition, says the Globe's Jim O'Sullivan.
-- Front Pages: Boston Globe five-column photo of Menino: "THE URBAN MAESTRO." WaPo leads with foreign fighters flocking to Syria. NYT reports on new tensions at a sacred site in Jerusalem, where Israel has restricted access after a shooting. WSJ reports on good GDP growth. USA Today leads with a new poll showing voter angst, below a five-column photo of reporters harassing the nurse in Maine who tried to go for a bike ride.
Poll-a-Palooza: Seriously, who answers a landline anymore?
-- Florida: Former Gov. Charlie Crist (D) leads Gov. Rick Scott (R) in Quinnipiac's final pre-election poll, with Libertarian Adrian Wyllie finishing at 8 percent. Crist leads among independents 47 percent to 29 percent, but what may be more important is the trendline: Scott led by 2 on Sept. 24. The two were tied on Oct. 22. Now Crist is up 3. (Quinnipiac) We've heard, from Ds and Rs watching the race, that Crist is making gains.
-- North Carolina: Sen. Kay Hagan (D) leads state House Speaker Thom Tillis (R) 45 percent to 41 percent among likely voters. President Obama's approval rating is just 40 percent, but just 30 percent say they approve of the General Assembly. (Elon, pdf) If voters care more about education in Raleigh than ObamaCare in D.C., Hagan wins.
-- Arkansas: Those Democratic hopes that a ballot measure to raise the minimum wage would help Sen. Mark Pryor (D) don't look like they'll pan out. A new Arkansas Poll shows the minimum wage increase passing by a 69 percent to 24 percent margin, but Rep. Tom Cotton (R) leads Pryor by a 49 percent to 36 percent margin. Former Rep. Asa Hutchinson (R) leads former Rep. Mike Ross (D) 50 percent to 39 percent in the governor's race. (University of Arkansas) Those are probably a little high. Most partisan polling shows Cotton ahead, though by smaller margins.
-- Michigan: Well this race just got tighter: Gov. Rick Snyder (R) leads former Rep. Mark Schauer (D) 45 percent to 43 percent in the final pre-election EPIC-MRA poll, thanks in large part to Democrats' efforts to increase absentee voting, according to pollster Bernie Porn. Undecideds lean toward Democrats, he said. Michigan Democrats have sent out more than a million absentee ballot applications. (Detroit Free Press) Snyder led the last EPIC-MRA poll, two weeks ago, by 8.
-- New York: Rep. Chris Gibson (R) leads venture capitalist Sean Eldridge (D) 58 percent to 35 percent in New York's 19th district, even after Eldridge spent millions of his own dollars to make himself known. Gibson has a 41 percent approval rating -- among Democrats. That's pretty good. (Siena, pdf) The poll shows 28 percent of Democrats will vote for Gibson.
National Roundup: What's happening outside the Beltway.
-- WH'16: Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) wants to keep his name in the presidential mix. In an interview with our colleague Robert Costa, Ryan said he's not a House "lifer," and that Mitt Romney has encouraged him to run for president. He's not in a rush to decide whether to get in, though if he makes a decision it will be next year. (Washington Post) The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation said it would hold a Republican debate in September 2015. (Associated Press) We should start taking bets on which candidate announces first. Fox News bookers, stand by those phones!
-- Hawaii: National Guard troops have been deployed to Pahoa to assist with security patrols in neighborhoods that are threatened by a stream of laval coming from the Kilauea volcano. The slowly moving lava was just a few hundred feet from the village's main street by Thursday. Five neighborhoods have been evacuated because they're in the lava's path. (Los Angeles Times)
-- Washington: Watch out, Jay Inslee and Patty Murray: Rep. Dave Reichert (R) says he's contemplating running for governor or for U.S. Senate in 2016, and he's got the domain names to prove it. Reichert's campaign bought Reichertforgovernor.com and Reichertforsenate.com back in 2011. (Seattle Times) We've heard this from Reichert before, and it's been a long time since a Republican last won a Senate seat in Washington (Slade Gorton did it in 1994). But there's no question Reichert is the best option Washington Republicans have.
-- South Carolina: Jenny Sanford is dishing about Mark. Well, Mark Hammond (R), that is. Hammond, the Republican Secretary of State, has been criticized for charging taxpayers for his 180-mile daily commute, which adds a few thousand dollars to his annual $92,000 salary. Jenny Sanford appears in a pretty funny campaign video for Ginny Deerin (D), a consultant to non-profit groups who says she wants to make the office appointed, not elected. (YouTube) Our colleague Karen Tumulty wrote about Deerin last week: She's a liberal Democrat who has support from the state chapter of the Club for Growth, which doesn't make a big practice of endorsing Democrats. (Washington Post)
-- Nevada: The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that exotic dancers are entitled to the minimum wage because they are employees of clubs, not independent contractors. Dancers at Sapphire Gentlemen's Club in Las Vegas sued over wages in 2009. There are 30 strip clubs and 12,000 dancers registered in Las Vegas alone. From the court's decision: "Given that Sapphire bills itself as the ‘World’s Largest Strip Club,’ and not, say, a sports bar or night club, we are confident that the women strip-dancing there are useful and indeed necessary to its operation." (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
DC Digest: What's on tap today in DC.
-- President Obama wakes up in Rhode Island this morning, where he'll deliver remarks on the economy at Rhode Island College. He heads back to D.C. a little after noon. This evening, he and Michelle hand out candy to kids at the South Portico of the White House.
-- Vice President Biden meets with staff at the White House this morning before heading to San Diego this afternoon. When he lands, Biden has a DNC fundraiser at a private residence on his calendar.
-- By the numbers: Harry Truman's party lost a total of 83 House seats during two bad midterm elections. Dwight Eisenhower's party lost a combined 66 House seats. President Obama lost 63 in 2010, and we'll know next week how close to Truman's total he gets. (Rothenblog)
-- D.C. financial officials say a ballot measure that would legalize marijuana in Washington could create a market worth $130 million. The initiative doesn't allow the sale of marijuana, only the home cultivation of small amounts, but D.C. Council members heard testimony on what legal sales regulations might look like. (Washington Post) They get the $130 million figure by estimating 122,000 users -- including commuters and tourists -- consuming three ounces worth $350 per ounce.
TV Time Out: Our exclusive look at who's advertising, and where.
-- Final Totals: The NRCC and DCCC have shipped their last ads of the cycle, barring a last-minute decision today or tomorrow. All told, they'll spend a combined $120 million or so on TV ads. The NRCC cut a total of 132 different advertisements, while the DCCC aired 147 unique spots.
-- Big Picture: Senate Majority PAC tried to buy a $10,000 30-second ad on WMUR's Friday evening newscast. But WMUR returned their money because the station had sold out of airtime. The group bought an ad on "Dancing with the Stars" on Monday for $24,000. Ending Spending Action Fund is spending $100,000 for a single 30-second ad during this weekend's Patriots game. Spending in the Greenville, N.C., market is 15 times higher than it was a year ago. Advertising in the Sioux City market is 14 times higher, and 11 times higher in Colorado Springs. (Associated Press)
-- Arkansas: The NRA is running online ads backing Rep. Tom Cotton (R) that show up on Grindr, the hookup app for gay men. A Grindr spokesman said they would stop the pro-Cotton ads, which were distributed by a third-party ad network. One strategist called the ad placement "either super lazy or interesting targeting." (Daily Beast)
B1: Business, politics and the business of politics
-- More than 20 percent of the nearly 3 million voters who have already turned out in Georgia, North Carolina, Colorado and Iowa did not vote in 2010, and they are much more diverse and Democratic than the electorate four years ago. Turnout among African American voters is especially high, though not high enough to overcome what's likely to be a Republican turnout advantage. (New York Times) We've seen some internal projections that look far more pessimistic for Democrats.
-- Stocks are up more than a percentage point in pre-bell trading, a day after Wall Street got a little richer. World markets are up across the board; the Nikkei gained almost 5 percent today(!). (CNN)
C1: The long reads you'll need to check out before tonight's cocktail party.
-- Our profile of Greg Abbott, likely to be the next governor of Texas, went live last night. He's running well among Hispanic voters, he's a darling of the Tea Party base and a friend of the business community. If Republicans can't win the White House back in 2016, don't be surprised if Abbott's name starts cropping up on short lists for 2020.
-- The strain that runs through Abbott’s life -- and, perhaps, gives him such a healthy ego -- is competition. One of his earliest memories is of foot-racing his older brother, and of trying to stop his brother from beating out their father. The 4-year-old Abbott broke his collarbone when his older brother ran right through him. Abbott tends to come unglued when he watches his Houston Rockets play basketball. Over the years, he's gotten in verbal altercations with Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan. (Washington Post)
C4: The comics page, fun things to read when you're bored at work
-- Nobody messes with Brian Lamb: Former CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson writes in her new book that the C-SPAN founder fought with the White House after a 2010 interview with President Obama, in which Obama said the administration would delay redecorating the Oval Office during tough economic times. They redecorated anyway, and the White House tried to get C-SPAN to squelch that part of the interview. It didn't work, despite some aggressive talk from Josh Earnest and others. (Washington Post)
Attn Matt Drudge: Things conservatives will get outraged by today.
-- Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.), attending a get-out-the-vote rally for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, said some Republicans "believe that slavery isn't over and they think they won the Civil War!" By contrast, "everything we're doing is God's work." (Business Insider) Well that clarifies things, doesn't it?
Attn HuffPo: What outrages liberals today
-- A Kentucky Republican Party mailer attacking a Democratic state representative compares a measure granting driver's licenses to illegal immigrants with the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The mailer includes a photo of the burning World Trade Center and a driver's license obtained by lead hijacker Mohamed Atta. (ThinkProgress) How subtle and understated.