Wednesday's Campaign News

Hastert vowed he would not quit, and tied his fate to the elections: "If they [his critics] get to me, it looks like they could affect our election as well."

And Majority Leader Rep. John Boehner dumps all the blame on Hastert: "In my position, it is in his corner, it is his responsibility."

Reuters: "Democrats lead Republicans in 11 of 15 crucial races in the November 7 election to decide which party controls the U.S. House of Representatives."

Look below for the breakdown of all the races.

In a new WSJ poll, Americans say the Iraq war and the House sex scandal have made them less favorable toward continued Republican control of Congress by 41%-18%.

A "46% plurality of Americans now believes the war in Iraq is hurting the nation's ability to win the war against terrorism," up from 32% earlier this month.

The poll also shows a decline in Mr. Bush's job approval rating to 39% from 42% earlier this month.

Pennsylvania's state Supreme Court ruled against Green Party Senate candidate Carl Romanelli's Republican-funded bid to get on the November ballot.

Sen. Rick Santorum (R) criticized the lower court's order to throw Mr. Romanelli off the ballot, describing it as the work of "partisan judges." The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has a majority of Republican justices.

Meanwhile, Santorum is "reserving judgment" on the Foley sex scandal.

Rep. Harold Ford told the Chattanooga Times Free Press' editorial board that a new RNC commercial includes a "dark, shadowy figure" he said is meant to represent him. "There's a really nasty [ad] running right now that I think injects a little race in this thing, the way they have me pictured."

Cleveland Plain-Dealer: "Sen. Mike DeWine has missed nearly half the public hearings of the Senate Intelligence Committee, a panel he is on that is supposed to keep the nation's intelligence capabilities on track."

From yesterday: Roll Call: Rep. John Murtha re-launched his campaign for House Majority Leader.

Rock Mountain News "If you're wondering how big the Democrats will win this fall, consider this: CQPolitics, an arm of Congressional Quarterly, has downgraded Colorado's 5th Congressional District from Safe Republican to Republican Favored....When the 5th is merely Republican Favored, you know the GOP is in trouble nationwide if not in Colorado Springs."

Boston Globe: "Nevada's Democratic Swing."

ARIZONA 8 - Democratic former state Sen. Gabrielle Giffords holds a 45-37 percent lead over Republican anti-immigration activist Randy Graf.

COLORADO 7- Democrat Ed Perlmutter leads Republican Rick O'Donnell by 45-34 percent.

CONNECTICUT 4 - Republican Rep. Christopher Shays trails Democrat Dianne Farrell by 46-41 percent.

ILLINOIS 6 - Democrat Tammy Duckworth leads Republican Peter Roskam 43-38.

INDIANA 2 - Democrat Joe Donnelly leads Republican Rep. Chris Chocola 48-39 percent.

INDIANA 9 - Democratic former congressman Baron Hill leads Republican Rep. Mike Sodrel by 46-38 percent.

NEW MEXICO 1 - Five-term Republican Rep. Heather Wilson trails Democrat Patricia Madrid 50-40 percent.

NORTH CAROLINA 11 - Democrat Heath Shuler, a former pro football player, leads Republican Rep. Charles Taylor 51-40 percent.

OHIO 18 - Republican state Sen. Joy Padgett trails Democrat Zack Space 45-35 percent.

PENNSYLVANIA 6 - Moderate Republican Rep. Jim Gerlach narrowly trails Democrat Lois Murphy 43-41 percent.

VIRGINIA 2 - First-term Republican Rep. Thelma Drake trails Democrat Phil Kellam 46-42 percent.

CONNECTICUT 2 - Republican Rep. Rob Simmons leads Democratic challenger Joe Courtney 44-41.

IOWA 1 - Republican businessman Mike Whalen leads Democratic lawyer Bruce Braley 47-34 percent.

KENTUCKY 4 - Republican Rep. Geoff Davis leads former Democratic Rep. Ken Lucas 42-36 percent.

MINNESOTA 6 - Republican Michele Bachmann leads Democrat Patty Wetterling 46-43 percent.