According to a report released yesterday by the Democratic staff of the Senate Finance Committee, five conservative nonprofit organizations, including one run by Grover Norquist, "'appear to have perpetrated a fraud' on taxpayers by selling their clout to lobbyist Jack Abramoff." LINK
"The groups named in the report are Norquist's Americans for Tax Reform; the Council of Republicans for Environmental Advocacy, which was co-founded by Norquist and Gale Norton before she became secretary of the interior; Citizens Against Government Waste; the National Center for Public Policy Research, a spinoff of the Heritage Foundation; and Toward Tradition, a Seattle-based religious group founded by Rabbi Daniel Lapin."
"A spokesman for Norquist, John Kartch, called the report 'political nonsense' pushed by Democrats close to the midterm elections."
Ohio Republicans are asserting that Democratic House candidate Mary Jo Kilroy was hypocritical in her criticism of Rep. Deborah Pryce (R-OH) because Kilroy has so far collected $10,000 from Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) who opposed tough punishment in the 1983 page scandal, reports the Columbus Dispatch. LINK
Republican House candidate Joy Padgett -- running to replace Bob Ney -- held a press conference to denounce the DCCC for its ad that says she was investigated by Ohio's Inspector General for abusing her former position as head of Ohio's Office of Appalachia to help her own business, Notes the Cleveland Plain Dealer's Eaton. LINK
The first congressional district in Iowa is the focus of a Business Week article and looks at why this congressional race is so important to the balance of Congress. The race features two never before politicians -- Republican candidate, restaurant owner Mike Whalen and Democratic candidate Bruce Braley, an attorney and a former president of the Iowa Trial Lawyers Association. LINK
It's battle of the all-stars in New Jersey, where Sen. Bob Menendez and Republican challenger Tom Kean, Jr. are bringing in their ringers. The New York Times reports that in the coming weeks, Sen. Menendez will be visited by the Clintons and Sen. Kennedy, while Kean will have Sen. McCain, Henry Kissinger and Rudy Giuliani in his corner. LINK
The AP on the dead heat in New Jersey: LINK
Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and senatorial hopeful and Democratic candidate, Bob Casey, faced off in a debate that went light on the issues but heavy on political theater. LINK
The Philadelphia Inquirer described it as a "barroom brawl -- minus the fists." LINK
Sen. Conrad Burns (R-MT) and Democrat Jon Tester sparred in a debate in Helena, MT last night disagreeing on almost every issue. The one issue they found solace on was the U.S. shouldn't invade Iran. The Billings Gazette provides this summary: LINK
The AP wraps the debate too. LINK
According to the Columbus Dispatch Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH) said yesterday that there are two choices on how to proceed in Iraq: "stay the course" or "cut and run." LINK
Sen. DeWine and Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) are using voting and attendance records to attack each other on national security, Notes the Columbus Dispatch. LINK
The army is reviewing the appearance of a uniformed soldier in one of Sen. DeWine's TV ads according to Defense Department instructions that prohibit members of the armed forces from wearing their uniform while participating in partisan activity, writes the AP. LINK