Creigh Deeds' Virginia win cemented the rise of a new political operative: Joe Abbey, Deeds' 30-year-old campaign manager, who had to beat out his mentors in the Democratic primary. The Post offers a nice profile of Abbey that includes details of how a poorly funded campaign managed to beat out Terry McAuliffe's money-making machine—largely by avoiding hotel rooms and expensive consultants. Now that Deeds has won (and is garnering presidential support) Abbey, who is the oldest of Deeds' staffers, will have to find a way to retain the campaign's "insurgent ethos."

The profile doesn't get into another Deeds strategy that has been garnering attention over the past few days: a "Google Surge." After Deeds won the Post's endorsement, the campaign bought highly targeted ads in DC and Northern Virginia over a 28-hour period.

I haven't been following the drama in the New York Senate too closely, but now it appears that one of the Democratic defectors has decided to fall back in line, meaning the Senate is even split. In a time of year when legislators should be getting down to business, no one is quite sure who is in charge.

A few day ago, both parties' congressional committees clarified just which districts they'll be targeting. Republicans' top target, Idaho's Rep. Walt Minnick, has a new Republican challenger. For the moment, though, there's been more development in Senate races. Former Rep. Pat Toomey has brought in a cool million, much of it from NRSC chair Sen. John Cornyn, but is still well behind either of his Democratic foes; one of the Tea Party organizers in Arkansas has decided to challenge Sen. Blanche Lincoln; Florida state Rep. Kendrick Meek has secured a few more endorsements for his Senate bid, which should help him avoid a primary; and late last week, Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchinson made her expected gubernatorial run official, though the date of her also-expected Senate withdrawal has not yet been announced.

Odds & Ends:

  • The Red Sox are a money maker for New England politicians, who are planning a large number of fundraisers while the team in challenging the Nationals.
  • Can Sarah Palin be nominated in 2012? Roger Simon says yes, and tells her how to do it.
  • Over at TechRepublican, Meghann Parlett talks with new Connell Donatelli president Chuck DeFeo.