(CNN) - Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper will formally enter the race for Colorado governor Tuesday, a Democratic source confirms to CNN.
Hickenlooper's decision gives Democrats a strong chance of keeping the seat after Gov. Bill Ritter announced last week that he would not seek a second term.
Hickenlooper has been talking to national Democrats about running for the seat since Ritter said he was going to retire. Last Thursday, Hickenlooper won the endorsement of Ken Salazar, the former Colorado senator who now serves as President Obama's Interior Secretary.
"John Hickenlooper is a uniter," Salazar said in a statement. "If he decides to run, he will make an excellent Governor for the State of Colorado."
Former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff is reportedly considering dropping his Democratic primary challenge to Sen. Michael Bennet to run for governor.
Former Rep. Scott McInnis is the likely Republican gubernatorial nominee.
- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report
Times are tough – very tough – for millions of Americans... but you could never tell by watching the way Congress spends our tax dollars on themselves.
CBS News has a stunning report on the all-expense paid trip at least 20 members of Congress made to the Copenhagen climate summit last month.
The bipartisan delegation led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was so large – it needed three military jets – two 737s and a Gulfstream Five. Some members brought along their spouses, children... plus there were also senators and staff members who made the trip to Denmark – most of them flying commercial.
Pelosi wouldn't answer any questions about costs or where they all stayed – even though she was the one who decided who went. Her office says only that it will "comply with disclosure requirements."
To read more and contribute to the Cafferty File discussion, click here
Washington (CNN) - Americans are giving Barack Obama a split decision on his first year in office, according to a new national poll.
Forty-eight percent of people questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Tuesday say Obama's presidency has been a failure so far, with 47 percent saying Obama has been a success. The poll's January 12 release comes just 8 days before Obama marks one year in the White House.
The survey indicates that Obama's approval rating as president stands at 51 percent, down 3 points from last month, with 48 percent disapproving, up 4 points from December.
"On the plus side for Obama, he remains personally popular and he gets decent ratings on foreign policy and national security issues. That may explain why his overall approval rating is a little higher than the number who say Obama's first year has been a success," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Unfortunately for Obama, domestic issues - led by the economy - are far more important to the public than foreign policy issues, and a majority disapprove of how he is handling every single economic and domestic issue tested."
(CNN) - Democratic candidate Martha Coakley is raising money at a high dollar event in Washington Tuesday, one week before Massachusetts voters choose a successor to the late Sen. Edward Kennedy.
Coakley is holding a fundraiser at a Capitol Hill restaurant with top donors asked to raise $10,000. The lowest donation requested is $1,000, according to an invitation for the event obtained by CNN.
A Coakley spokesman said the fundraiser will be attended by members of the Massachusetts congressional delegation and will help the Democratic nominee answer attacks being made by third-party groups and individuals heading into the closing days of the campaign.
"Shadowy outside groups funded in secret by national Republicans with ties to Swift Boaters and the folks who did the Willie Horton ad have flooded Massachusetts with hundreds of thousands of dollars in false smears against Martha Coakley," said spokesman Hari Sevugan, who also serves as spokesman for the Democratic National Committee. "The Coakley campaign is meeting with members of the Massachusetts delegation to have the resources to fight back."
There's an election coming up in just a week. CNN Political Editor Mark Preston and CNN's John Lisk with more:
Follow Mark Preston on Twitter: @prestoncnn
Political leaders from across America - including President Barack Obama, former President Bill Clinton and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi - came together for the funeral of 92-year-old Catherine Eugenia "Jean" Finnegan Biden, who died Friday at the family's home in Wilmington, Delaware.
First lady Michelle Obama also attended the funeral Mass, which was held at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church in Wilmington.
Washington (CNN) - Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell declined Tuesday to follow some of his GOP colleagues who are calling for Sen. Harry Reid to step aside as Senate Majority Leader.
"I think that is an issue for the Democratic conference," McConnell said at morning press conference at the Capitol.
When pressed by CNN as to whether that means he does not agree with Republicans calling for Reid to be ousted, McConnell simple repeated, "I think that's an issue for the Democratic conference."
On Sunday, Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said that if McConnell had been the one to utter Reid's racially insensitive quote about President Obama, Democrats would be calling for McConnell's head.
(CNN) - Former Rep. Harold Ford Jr. of Tennessee says he may challenge fellow Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand for her Senate seat in New York.
"It's true: I am strongly considering running for the United States Senate," Ford writes in Tuesday's New York Post.
The five term congressman, who narrowly lost a 2006 bid for the Senate in Tennessee, now lives in New York and lately has hinted that he might make take on Gillibrand for their party's Senate nomination. Gillibrand, a former congresswoman from upstate New York, was named a year ago to replace Hillary Clinton, who stepped down from her Senate seat after being confirmed as secretary of state. Gillibrand is running to serve the final two years of Clinton's term.
Ford's move may anger the White House, which supports Gillibrand and has helped clear the field of any potential Democratic rivals.
"I think the White House is quite happy with the leadership and the representation of Senator Gillibrand in New York," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday when asked about a possible bid by Ford. "We're supporting her reelection."
Asked about new attempts by the White House to clear the field again, Gibbs said "stay tuned."
(CNN) - Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown of Massachusetts is launching a new ad Tuesday accusing Democratic opponent Martha Coakley of trying to "tear [him] down."
The ad comes hours after the two candidates debated and Coakley hit the airwaves with a television commercial declaring Brown is in "lockstep with Washington Republicans."
The ad also comes a day after the Brown campaing raised over $1 million online in a planned so-called "money bomb," double the campaign's original goal.
Recent polls suggest the race to fill the late Sen. Ted Kennedy's seat may be closer than expected in its final days, though Coakley still holds a clear advantage in the overwhelmingly Democratic state. Election Day is January 19. FULL POST