Weekend polling indicated that Ted Cruz, the Tea Party's choice for the U.S. Senate seat that's up for grabs in Tuesday's Texas runoff, is leading. However, his opponent, the GOP pick, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst still has a pretty good chance.
Government funding was set to run out on Sept. 30, but congressional leaders on Tuesday said they reached a deal to extend it for six months at current levels. Lawmakers with tea party leanings led the way, to prevent possibility of a preelection government shutdown.
The end of the fiscal year is typically a flash point for partisan battles, but not with a 'fiscal cliff' looming after November elections. Even GOP conservatives are accepting higher spending levels, rather than risk a government shutdown.
Tuesday's victory by Deb Fischer, who had the endorsement of Sarah Palin in the Nebraska GOP Senate primary, is an upset. But Fischer may in fact be the strongest Republican to run against Democrat Bob Kerrey, analysts say.