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Pro-Romney super PAC launches ads with former Obama supporters

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* Ending Spending Action Fund will begin a $1.5 million buy for TV ads hitting President Obama with regretful former Obama supporters, including Democrat-turned-Republican former congressman Artur Davis. The super PAC is backed by billionaire Joe Ricketts, who plans to spend $10 million to help Mitt Romney. He also came under scrutiny this year when the New York Times reported that he was considering a plan to run spots that would have tied the president to his controversial former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. 

* The pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future is launching new ad buys in Michigan and Wisconsin at a cost of about $1 million in each state. The new commercial says "the real unemployment rate is 19 percent."

* A new poll conducted for former surgeon general Richard Carmona's (D) Arizona Senate campaign shows the Democrat running about even with Rep. Jeff Flake (R). Flake is at 44 percent and Carmona is at 43 percent in the Anzalone Liszt survey

* The Republican nonprofit group Crossroads GPS launched a $1.2 million buy in Wisconsin for a TV spot that says Rep. Tammy Baldwin's (D-Wis.) "tax and spend agenda is just too extreme for Wisconsin."

* Early voting in Ohio is on pace to surpass 2008 levels. Already, 10 percent of registered voters have submitted applications for absentee ballots. In 2008, about 30 percent of Ohio voters cast mail ballots or voted early in person. 


* Maine Republican Senate nominee Charlie Summers released a new biographical TV ad in which he says he hopes that when Mainers look at him, "they will see a little bit of themselves, and they'll note they will always have someone to fight for them." Meanwhile, the National Republican Senatorial Committee has extended its ad buy for another week. The committee is running a spot criticizing independent former governor Angus King, the front-runner in the three-way race. 

* A poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosener for the New Hampshire Democratic Party shows Obama leading Romney 52 percent to 45 percent in the Granite State. The survey also shows Democratic gubernatorial nominee Maggie Hassan running about even with Republican nominee Ovide Lamontagne. Hassan is at 48 percent while Lamontagne is at 46 percent in the poll. 

* Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) will headline the Iowa Republican Party's Oct. 20 Ronald Reagan Dinner. 

 * A Republican poll conducted for Utah congressional candidate Mia Love's campaign and the National Republican Congressional Committee shows her leading Rep. Jim Matheson (D) 51 percent to 36 percent, a sharp turnabout from a July poll that showed Matheson at 51 percent. It's worth noting that the latest poll is more than two weeks old, having been conducted Sept. 10 and 11. 

* The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee released a new TV ad in the Montana Senate race hitting Rep. Dennis Rehberg (R) over a speech last fall in which he called lobbying "an honorable profession."

* Former Virginia senator George Allen's (R) latest TV ad features a woman whose son was killed in Iraq. She says she received a personal note of support from Allen. "What made it different was a handwritten note, parent to parent," the woman says. 


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Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.

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The South Carolina GOP primary and the Nevada Democratic caucuses are next on Feb. 20. Get caught up on the race.
Past South Carolina GOP primary winners
South Carolina polling averages
Donald Trump leads in the first state in the South to vote, where he faces rivals Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio.
South Carolina polling averages
The S.C. Democratic primary is Feb. 27. Clinton has a significant lead in the state, whose primary falls one week after the party's Nevada caucuses.
62% 33%
We'll have half a million voters in South Carolina. I can shake a lot of hands, but I can't shake that many.
Sen. Marco Rubio, speaking to a group of reporters about his strategy to regain support after a poor performance in the last debate
Fact Checker
Sanders’s claim that Clinton objected to meeting with ‘our enemies’
Sanders said that Clinton was critical of Obama in 2008 for suggesting meeting with Iran. In fact, Clinton and Obama differed over whether to set preconditions, not about meeting with enemies. Once in office, Obama followed the course suggested by Clinton, abandoning an earlier position as unrealistic.
Pinocchio Pinocchio Pinocchio
The complicated upcoming voting schedule
Feb. 20

Democrats caucus in Nevada; Republicans hold a primary in South Carolina.

Feb. 23

Republicans caucus in Nevada.

Feb. 27

Democrats hold a primary in South Carolina.

Upcoming debates
Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

March 3: GOP debate

on Fox News, in Detroit, Mich.

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Where the race stands

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