Political Capital

Sen. Richard Lugar outside the Senate chamber in Washington.

Photograph by Win McNamee/Getty Images

Sen. Richard Lugar outside the Senate chamber in Washington.

Outside Groups Influencing Indiana Senate Primary

Indiana Senator Richard Lugar is getting extra help from some powerful people as a May 8 Republican primary nears. YG Network Inc., a non-profit independent expenditure group led by former aides to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and House Majority...

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Shoppers on April 16, 2012 in New York City.

Photograph by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Shoppers on April 16, 2012 in New York City.

Magic Number of the Day: 5

That’s the number of consecutive weeks in which the Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index has been higher among Democrats than Republicans, the longest such streak since May 2011. The index, which asks respondents for their views on the national economy, their...

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President Barack Obama at a campaign event on April 10, 2012, in Hollywood, Fla.

Photograph by Carolyn Kaster/AP Photo

President Barack Obama at a campaign event on April 10, 2012, in Hollywood, Fla.

Obama Campaign Refunds $10K from Investor Charged with Running Ponzi Scheme

President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign is refunding donations from Los Angeles investor Shervin Neman and his wife Cassandra after they were accused by the Securities and Exchange Commission of running a Ponzi scheme, a campaign official said today, speaking on condition of anonymity....

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Rep. Jason Altmire through a window as he votes in the Pennsylvania primary on April 24, 2012 in McCandless, Pa.

Photograph by Keith Srakocic/AP Photo

Rep. Jason Altmire through a window as he votes in the Pennsylvania primary on April 24, 2012 in McCandless, Pa.

Can the (Democratic) Center Hold?

The losses of Democratic Representatives Tim Holden and Jason Altmire in Pennsylvania primary elections yesterday will thin the ranks of Democrats who sometimes buck their party leadership on issues including fiscal policy and health care. Here’s just one way of...

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A Newt Gingrich campaign volunteer collects donations at a rally on Feb. 29, 2012 in Gainesville, Ga.

Photograph by Evan Vucci/AP Photo

A Newt Gingrich campaign volunteer collects donations at a rally on Feb. 29, 2012 in Gainesville, Ga.

Gingrich Super-PAC Cash Enough to Pay His Debt — if Only it Were Legal

Newt Gingrich, who has signaled he’s about to hop off the campaign trail, is saddled with at least $4.3 million in campaign debt. Too bad his largest super-PAC can’t help; it reported a cash balance of more than $5.7 million...

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Students, faculty, staff and invited guests cheer for President Barack Obama at Prince Georges Community College on March 15, 2012 in Largo, Maryland.

Photograph by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Students, faculty, staff and invited guests cheer for President Barack Obama at Prince Georges Community College on March 15, 2012 in Largo, Maryland.

Magic Number of the Day: 52

That’s President Barack Obama’s approval rating among 18-to-29 year-olds, according to a Harvard University Institute of Politics survey released yesterday. It’s up from 46 percent from December 2011, though below his 58 percent rating in November 2009. Obama led Mitt...

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Candidates for the Democratic nominee for North Carolina governor, state Rep. Bill Faison, D-Orange, left, former Rep. Bob Etheridge, center, and Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton prior to a live televised debate at WRAL in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 16, 2012.

Photograph by Gerry Broome/AP Photo

Candidates for the Democratic nominee for North Carolina governor, state Rep. Bill Faison, D-Orange, left, former Rep. Bob Etheridge, center, and Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton prior to a live televised debate at WRAL in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 16, 2012.

Etheridge Touts Background in Schools, Not Congress, in N.C. Ad

Bob Etheridge, a North Carolina Democrat running for governor this year, spent 14 years in Congress and eight years prior to that as state schools superintendent. Can you guess which job he’s touting in a new campaign commercial? (Hint: it’s...

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Mitt Romney during a campaign rally at the Elko Regional Airport on Feb. 3, 2012 in Nevada.

Photograph by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Mitt Romney during a campaign rally at the Elko Regional Airport on Feb. 3, 2012 in Nevada.

Romney Remembers France (and Toilet-less Apartments)

There are toilet-less apartments, and then there are magnificent strolls down the Champs Elysees. When a French TV reporter asked presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney for his fondest memories of France — where he served as a Mormon missionary...

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Senior citizens protest against cuts to federal safety net programs, including Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid in Chicago.

Photograph by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Senior citizens protest against cuts to federal safety net programs, including Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid in Chicago.

Magic Number of the Day: $736.1 Billion

That’s how much the U.S. government spent on Social Security in 2011, according to a report the program’s trustees released yesterday. Of that total, $603.8 billion went to retired workers, their families, and survivors of deceased workers under the Old-Age...

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