(CNN) - Rep. Charlie Melancon, the Democratic Senate nominee in Louisiana, plans to run a two-minute television ad as early as Wednesday night addressing his GOP opponent's 2007 prostitution scandal, a spokesman for Melancon's campaign said.
The ad, an abridged version of a Melancon campaign film called "Forgotten Crimes," features an audio recording of a "French Quarter prostitute," who describes her experience with Sen. David Vitter.
"He went in, took a shower, spoke very little to me at first," she says. "He did his thing. He wasn't there 15, 20 minutes at that."
(CNN) - The hot-button issue of illegal immigration erupted in the California race for governor Wednesday as a former housekeeper for GOP nominee Meg Whitman alleged that she had been "exploited, disrespected, humiliated and emotionally and financially abused" by the former eBay CEO.
Nicky Diaz – Santillan, who worked for Whitman for nine years, was fired in June 2009 "for what appeared to be political reasons involving Ms. Whitman's decision to run for governor," famed attorney Gloria Allred said in a news conference.
The Whitman campaign immediately shot back, claiming that Santillan had falsely filled out immigration forms when she first applied for employment as a housekeeper and was not, in fact, a legal resident of the United States.
See Nicky Diaz- Santillan's employment documents as released by Whitman's campaign here.
Washington (CNN) - The popular Republican governor of a traditionally blue state has a message for GOP candidates: "put up or shut up."
"It's put up or shut up time for the Republican party once we get the opportunity to govern again," New Jersey Governor Chris Christie told reporters outside a GOP retreat on Wednesday in Washington. "If the voters do give us that opportunity in November on the federal level, it's time for us to deliver. And it won't be easy."
(CNN) - Rep. Mike Castle just told CNN he will make a decision soon- as early as Wednesday- about whether to launch a write-in candidacy.
Castle has been contemplating the move since losing the GOP Senate primary in Delaware a few weeks ago.
But he told me he's also been leaning against it.
We spoke while walking outside of the House chamber:
(CNN) - The Florida Democratic Party is out Wednesday with two ads supporting Democratic gubernatorial nominee Alex Sink.
One is a mostly positive ad in which Sink takes a shot at her opponent's previous leadership of a health care company.
"I know Floridians have a lot of questions about Rick Scott," Sink says in the ad. "The company he ran was fined $1.7 billion for Medicare fraud against seniors and taxpayers. On the other hand the Florida bank I led [made] $1.7 billion in loans to small businesses. Newspapers say I ran my company with honesty and integrity."
1:23 p.m. - It has been the worse kept secret in Washington, but now it's official: House Democrats plan to leave for a five-week recess without trying to take up an extension of the Bush era middle class tax cuts.
First, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer confirmed it.
Then, I ran into Speaker Pelosi. I told her what Hoyer said, and asked her to put in her own words why the vote would not be held. Here's what she said:
(CNN) – Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich all appear to be at a disadvantage as the start of the 2012 presidential race looms – at least according to one metric.
More Americans appear to dislike than like each of the potential GOP White House contenders, according to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released Wednesday.
The survey found Gingrich has a 24 percent favorable rating, while 35 percent of Americans view him unfavorably. Romney has a 21 percent favorable and 30 percent unfavorable rating. Palin - the best known of the group - has a 30 percent favorable and 48 percent unfavorable rating.
Washington (CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama's push for a new child nutrition law has hit a wall in Congress - at least temporarily.
Democrats on both sides of the issue say the legislative overhaul she's advocating is nearly frozen in the House of Representatives and very unlikely to pass before lawmakers recess this week.
A key bloc of House Democrats is threatening to vote against the Senate-passed child nutrition bill the first lady is promoting because it pays for the new initiatives in part by taking $2.2 billion slated for the food stamp program.
Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) - You ever wonder how families are selected to host President Obama's personal visits? It might all come down to your backyard.
Sandy and Jeff Clubb, a university athletic director and a local private school teacher, were chosen to host the president in Des Moines, Iowa, as part of the White House's series of informal discussions on the economy leading up to the midterm elections.
I met the Clubbs in their driveway at 4:30 a.m. Wednesday. It was still dark outside. I was among a small group of reporters in the first wave to arrive before the president's entourage.
Washington (CNN) - He's traveled from coast to coast trying to help fellow Democrats. But on October 7, President Barack Obama won't have to make such a long trip.
A Democratic source confirms to CNN that Obama will team up next week with Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, who's running for re-election this year.
News of the trip, first reported by the Washington Post, came Tuesday as the president's voice appeared in a new radio ad for the first-term governor.