Off to the races: Brown Out.

Politico: "They’d never say it publicly. But catch many Democrats in an honest moment and they would admit that a Republican-led government shut down this fall might be the best thing — perhaps the only thing — that could revive their fading hopes of capturing the House next year...Nothing short of a powerful jolt — a moment that grabs casual voters by the lapels and makes them take notice — is likely to alter the landscape in a dramatic way. A shutdown could be it, Democrats argue, putting in play GOP-leaning districts now thought to be all but out of reach."

CALIFORNIA: NBC News: "A deal has been reached to resolve a sexual harassment suit against embattled San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, city officials said Wednesday night, but no one will say what it is. Details of the settlement won't be disclosed until it's presented Friday to the City Council, which must approve it, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said. And it may not emerge even then, because the proposal will be presented in a closed session."

MASSACHUSETTS: Boston Globe: "Former senator Scott Brown said late Wednesday he would not run for governor next year, ending months of uncertainty within the Republican Party and effectively sweeping a clear path to the nomination for 2010 gubernatorial nominee Charles D. Baker." 

Brown's Facebook post: "As I said, I am grateful for your encouragement and support. For the first time in 15 plus years, I have had a Summer to spend with my family. In addition, I have been fortunate to have private sector opportunities that I find fulfilling and exhilarating. These new opportunities have allowed me to grow personally and professionally. I want to continue with that process."

MINNESOTA: Minneapolis Star-Tribune: "St. Louis County Commissioner Chris Dahlberg, a Republican on the largely Democratic-county's governing body, said he plans to join the race against Democratic U.S. Sen. Al Franken." Dahlberg: "I’m not running solely because of the person that is holding the position, I am running because I really feel that Chris Dahlberg can make a difference. I don't believe I'm being naive to say that a person can make a difference in Washington, DC. It is difficult but it can be done."

NEW JERSEY: In unsurprising news, President Obama officially endorsed Cory Booker in the state's Senate special election -- a week after he won the nomination.

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul told the National Review he may endorse GOP nominee Steve Lonegan. Paul: "We’re considering trying to help him out,...In all likelihood, we’ll go in and either financially or try to help him through an endorsement or something. He just won the endorsement recently and we’d like to try to help him.”

NEW YORK: New York Daily News: "Mayoral contender Bill de Blasio suddenly found himself on the hot seat Wednesday night, absorbing the majority of the attacks in the second major Democratic debate of the campaign. His chief rivals, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and former Controller Bill Thompson, frequently took aim at de Blasio, the city’s Public Advocate, reflecting his surprising new status as a front-runner with less than three weeks left in the Democratic primary. They painted him as a flip-flopper on term limits and accused him of distorting their records on stop-and-frisk policing."

VIRGINIA: Richmond Times Dispatch: Facing federal investigations into gifts he received from Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams, "Gov. Bob McDonnell’s job approval rating remains virtually unchanged from last month, ticking up one percentage point to 47 percent, while the number of registered Virginia voters who view him favorably hit a new low in a poll released this morning. His favorability rating is 34-35 percent, but voters still approve 47-39 percent of the job the governor is doing in the poll by Qunnipiac University."

Hardball's Michael LaRosa takes a look at how the scandals, which also touch Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, are impacting the Old Dominion GOP and the race for governor. 

WYOMING: Liz Cheney, the former vice president's daughter who's challenging Sen. Mike Enzi in the state's GOP primary, "posted a $220 bond in Ninth Circuit Court in Teton County on Monday on a charge of making a false statement to procure a fishing license," the Jackson Hole News & Guide reports. "Cheney has said she bought the license in 2012 after buying a house near Wilson earlier in the year. A resident license costs $24, a nonresident one $92. She has moved to the house from Virginia. She has said that she did not know one was required to live in Wyoming for the immediately previous 365 days to qualify as a resident. She said she never told the clerk who sold the license she lived in the state for 10 years, although the clerk marked her application '10' under the category of years of residency."