Good Wednesday morning! Here’s what you need to know:
- Governor Chris Christie is officially not running for president. Check out our voyage to Trenton to watch him break the hearts of dissatisfied Republicans everywhere >
- Christie’s decision was a major disappointment to his rich New York fan club, a small but influential group that includes coveted GOP donors like David Koch and financier Ken Langone. Langone told Charlie Rose last night that he respects Christie’s decision, and has put his support behind former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. New national polls have Romney back at the top of the Republican field — the question is when will he start acting like the frontrunner?
- Pizza titan Herman Cain, once considered a long-shot candidate in the 2012 Republican presidential race, is seriously surging. A new CBS News poll, released last night, has Cain at the top of the GOP field, tied with favourite Mitt Romney with 17% support among Republican primary voters. Former frontrunner Rick Perry fell to third place with 12%. That’s really bad news for the Texas Governor, whose support has dropped by half in just two weeks.
- DON’T MISS: 11 You Never Knew About ‘The Hermanator’
- Elsewhere on the campaign trail, Elizabeth Warren killed it in her first debate in the 2012 Massachusetts Senate race. Warren, on stage with her five Democratic primary opponents, stuck it to U.S. Sen. Scott Brown for his cozy relationship with Wall Street, contrasting it with her record of going “toe-to-toe” with major banks. The Boston Globe breaks it down here.
- Democrats had a good night last night with a victory in West Virginia’s special gubernatorial election. Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin narrowly defeated Republican businessman Bill Maloney, despite Maloney’s efforts to tie Tomblin to Obamacare. Tomblin, who replaced Democrat Joe Manchin when he won a U.S. Senate seat last year, will stay in the governor’s office until 2012.
- And in Washington, the political gamesmanship over President Barack Obama’s jobs plan continues today with a report that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is considering a 5% surtax on millionaires to replace the current plan for new revenues. The plan, first reported by Politico, would obviously die at the hands of House Republicans, and is mostly just a way for Reid to hit back Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell for trying to force a vote on the jobs bill yesterday.
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