Huffpost Politics

10 Election Things You Need To Know Today

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Want to know what's happening on the campaign trail? Who's up and who's down in the polls? Where you can meet the candidates in person? Here you go:

TOP NOTCH SECURITY: Herman Cain is the first Republican presidential candidate to receive Secret Service protection. The Cain campaign asked for the extra security after receiving death threats. On Friday, Cain will deliver remarks at the "Restoration Weekend," hosted by the David Horowitz Freedom Center in Palm Beach, Fla. (The Huffington Post)

LATE SHOW STOP: The former CEO of Godfather's Pizza will also appear on CBS's "Late Show With David Letterman" tonight. The segment, which was taped on Thursday, reportedly focuses on Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan. (Burns & Haberman)

LUKE WARM: Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney hasn't quite convinced tea party activists that he's a true conservative, but some say they would support him if he became the Republican nominee. Romney will try to shore up that support during an event at the Devine Milliment-Manchester Chamber of Commerce Forum in Manchester, N.H., on Friday. (Los Angeles Times)

PERCEPTION PROBLEM: Aware that it has an image problem, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has launched a multi-million dollar media campaign in 21 markets. One of the ads, which includes pictures of a diverse range of people and uses the tagline, "I'm a Mormon," will appear in The New York Times on Friday. Missing from the promos are images and/or testimonials from Romney and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, two Mormons running for the GOP presidential nomination. The church is reportedly not airing the campaign in states that have early primaries in order to avoid the perception that it is trying to influence politics. (The New York Times)

JUST SAYIN' HOWDY: Texas Gov. Rick Perry will make a day-long swing through the Empire State on Friday. Although he will speak at the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation Luncheon in New York City, Perry reportedly has no plans to do any fundraising. (Politico)

SALES PITCH: Yes, he's running for the Republican nomination, but former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is also a man with a need to promote his more creative endeavors. On Friday, he and his wife Callista will host a screening of their documentary "A City Upon A Hill" at Harvard’s Institute of Politics. Then he'll head down the road to Harvard Square, where he plans to sign copies of his latest book, "A Nation Like No Other." His campaign justifies these appearances by calling them an effective way to communicate his message. (Real Clear Politics)

KIDS' CHOICE: If given the chance to vote, a group of fifth and sixth graders in New Hampshire would choose Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) over the other Republican candidates. The 76-year-old lawmaker will meet with actual voters during three campaign events in Iowa today. (The Associated Press and The Fix)

NEW POLICY RELEASE: Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Penn.) will reportedly unveil his economic policy plan today. "Made In America: Empowering American Families, Building Economic Freedom" will feature 31 points, including a simplified tax code and reduced taxes. Santorum will promote the plan at four town hall meetings in Iowa -- including one that will take place at a Godfathers Pizza parlor. (ABC News)

STAFF ENERGIZER: While President Barack Obama hasn't fully switched into campaign mode, First Lady Michelle Obama is already out in the field meeting with supporters and staff. "Her mission is to energize folks and give them encouragement to go out and do the work," David Axelrod, Obama's chief strategist, said. (The New York Times)

HOLIDAY SHOPPING: Planning to do a bit of holiday shopping this weekend? Well, Rufus Gifford, the Obama campaign's national finance director, is reportedly encouraging supporters to take advantage of a $5 coupon at the Barack Obama 2012 campaign store. Other than the typical T-shirts and buttons, holiday shoppers can also purchase martini glasses, golf balls, a cutting board and a tailgating pack. (The Atlantic)

 
  Obama Romney
Obama Romney
332 206
Obama leading
Obama won
Romney leading
Romney won
Popular Vote
33 out of 100 seats are up for election. 51 are needed for a majority.
Democrat leading
Democrat won
Holdover
Republican leading
Republican won
Democrats* Republicans
Current Senate 53 47
Seats gained or lost +2 -2
New Total 55 45
* Includes two independent senators expected to caucus with the Democrats: Angus King (Maine) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.).
All 435 seats are up for election. 218 are needed for a majority.
Democrat leading
Democrat won
Republican leading
Republican won
Democrats Republicans
Seats won 201 234
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