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Bagels and Ballots – Monday

Less Competition in the Windy City: Obama’s chief of staff Rahm Emanuel has been eyeing a run for mayor of Chicago — the first Jewish one, at that. Yesterday, former city inspector David Hoffman, also Jewish, announced he isn’t running — a decision the Sun-Times expects will help Rahm’s candidacy. (Chicago Sun-Times)

Catching Up: Remember that pesky enthusiasm gap? President Obama is kicking off a spate of big rallies to close it — starting on Tuesday in Wisconsin. (New York Times: The Caucus blog)

The Not So Wild West?: The San Francisco Chronicle is unimpressed with the race between Carly Fiorina and Barbara Boxer for U.S. Senate — so the paper isn’t endorsing either of them. Boxer, the Democratic incumbent, the editorial says, “has failed to distinguish herself” during her 18 years in the seat; and Republican challenger Fiorina “has an agenda that would undermine the nation’s need to move forward” on issues such as climate change, health care, and immigration. (San Francisco Chronicle)

2012 Vision: According to a Politico/George Washington University poll, 38% of voters say Barack Obama deserves to be reelected (and the Onion says one in five Americans think he’s a cactus) — though they would back Obama over Sarah Palin. And 58% said that since Palin quit her job as Alaska’s governor, her candidacy has grown less appealing. Mike Huckabee has 48% favorability, with Mitt Romney, who has 45%, on his tail. (Politico)

Candidate Checkup: Wisconsin’s race for U.S. Senate is heating up, and the candidates’ differences on health-care policy are becoming more and more pronounced. Republican Ron Johnson says his anger over recent legislation led to his Senate run, and that he’d want it repealed. Incumbent Democrat Russ Feingold, though, sees it as a means for insuring more citizens equitably. (Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel)

Lazio’s Rainy Monday: New York’s Tea-Partying Republican gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino likes the Rolling Stones, Motown music, the Yankees, believes in the “sanctity of life,” and is down with enforcing an immigration law like the one in Arizona. It looks like the formidable Buffalonian will have the right side of the ballot to himself, as Rick Lazio is expectedto withdraw from the race as a Conservative Party candidate. (Daily News)

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