In a blue state like Illinois, this wasn't supposed to happen. But things are looking good for Congressman Mark Kirk, who is running for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by Blagojevich appointee Roland Burris.
The Hill reports that the Kirk campaign conducted a set of automated polls that showed Kirk with a seven-point lead over Democratic front-runner Alexi Giannoulias, and gigantic leads over his GOP primary opponents.
In other news:
Cadigan: GOP 10th District hopeful attorney Bill Cadigan was on Jeff Berkowitz's show Public Affairs. Read the interview here.
401 (kids): Mark Kirk thinks that given the problems with Illinois' Bright Start college savings plan, a "401 (kids)" plan that puts investment choices in the hands of families, and takes it out of the government's hands, is a good idea. But, even he admits that this fine idea may go nowhere in a Democratic Congress, given the reluctance of Dems to release power over the lives of people once they grab it.
Pass the ammunition: Mark Kirk is also making headlines for his stance on Afghanistan, where he believes that we need to quickly power-up the troop levels to avoid stagnation in that war:
As Rep. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., a reserve Naval intelligence officer, puts it, "A cruise-control policy will end up in a long, bloody holding action. And democracies are not into long, bloody holding actions. We are into `victory or pull out.'
"We have been in this for eight years. If you put this mission on cruise control, people will lose faith in it, even the military will lose faith in it, and that leads to defeat," he said.