Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post reports that Robert Gibbs, President Obama's press secretary, gave Alexi Giannoulias, the Dem nominee for the Illinois U.S. Senate seat, a "tepid" endorsement yesterday after Giannoulias came to D.C. to meet with top Obama administration staff:
Illinois state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, the party's nominee for the state's open Senate seat, visited the White House Tuesday and picked up a somewhat tepid endorsement from press secretary Robert Gibbs. "Alexi Giannoulias is the Democratic nominee for the United States Senate and has the support and the backing of the White House," Gibbs said from the podium.
Cillizza also notes that Republicans "are growing increasingly confident" about Kirk's chances to wrest the seat away from the Dems in light of the Broadway bank troubles that continue to shadow Giannoulias.
Rasmussen also has a new poll out showing Alexi with only the slightest of leads over Kirk, 44-41, according to Rich Miller at Capitol Fax Blog. (note that his original source, Fox News, apparently misreported the numbers earlier as 42-41 Alexi/Kirk) Rich has a great wrap-up on this and more, so go check it out. As of this morning, Rasmussen did not have the poll numbers up on its website but I am assuming the gap between Kirk and Alexi is still within the margin of error.
Let's not forget that Illinois is a deep blue state, overall, and that Alexi is supposed to be WINNING. Kirk, not Alexi, is the underdog here, and as long as Kirk keeps pace with Alexi in the months leading up to the Blago trial, I think we're in pretty good shape.