Sen. Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina, viewed as one of the most vulnerable incumbent Republican senators seeking re-election in 2008, has made a comeback with successful fund-raising and a boost in approval ratings.Dole's private polls put her favorability level at 59 percent, compared with President Bush's 42 percent.
Republican insiders attribute that mostly to her opposing the immigration bill backed by Bush. Thanks to effective second quarter fund-raising (at a level not yet announced), Dole is sitting on an estimated $2 million. She previously had been criticized as an ineffective first-term senator, mainly because of her national chairmanship of the failed 2006 Senate campaign.
Gov. Michael Easley, the strongest potential Democratic challenger so far, has resisted pleas that he run. Dole's war chest may discourage lesser-known Democrats. But State Rep. Grier Martin, an Iraq war veteran, has family money for a possible candidacy.
Saturday, July 07, 2007
NC Senate 2008
From Bob Novak's column today: