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INSIDE POLITICS

The Washington Times' political blog.

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**FILE** Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (Associated Press)

Crist: Rubio 'a real nice guy'

Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist said Wednesday he hasn't decided whether to take a side in the presidential contest yet — but it appears there still isn't a ton of love lost between Mr. Crist and Sen. Marco Rubio, who beat him in the race for the seat in 2010.

** FILE ** Former Sen. George Allen celebrates with his wife, Susan (left), and daughter Tyler in Richmond on Tuesday, June 12, 2012, after securing a win in Virginia's Republican primary in his effort to reclaim his old Senate seat. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Allen snags Chamber endorsement

Republican George Allen won the endorsement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Wednesday in his Senate race against Democrat Tim Kaine in Virginia, giving the former governor and senator the backing of the world's largest business federation.

Rep. Steny H. Hoyer, Maryland Democrat

Hoyer braces for busy lame duck session

The House's No. 2 Democrat says the upcoming congressional lame duck session is shaping up to be among the busiest in decades, as lawmakers continue to punt on several significant fiscal issues before the Nov. 6 elections.

**FILE** Tom Ridge (Associated Press/Fox News Sunday)

Bush homeland security chief gives Obama 'C' on security

Former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said Wednesday he'd give President Obama a "C" on his national security record, applauding him for the raid that killed Osama bin Laden raid but decrying recent national security leaks that have become a flashpoint on Capitol Hill.

**FILE** David Axelrod (Associated Press)

Axelrod goes on the offensive against Romney campaign

Senior Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod struck back at the Romney campaign on Wednesday, defending the president's foreign policy record and accusing the presumptive Republican presidential nominee of failing to put forth his own vision for the world's future.