• (UPDATED with link to Cook Political Report) The nonpartisan Cook Political Report has shifted the race for the 2nd Congressional District from “likely Republican” to “solid Republican,” saying Democratic challenger Clay Aiken may be an “impressive candidate in person,” but he has spent too much money on consultants and not enough building a campaign organization. Incumbent GOP Rep. Renee Ellmers is seeking her third term in Congress.

• N.C. State political science professor Michael Cobb looks at the widespread criticism of a recent CBS News/New York Times poll finding Republican House Speaker Thom Tillis with a one-point lead against incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan in the U.S. Senate race. Cobb says critics are right to question the methods of the poll, conducted entirely online, but notes that Internet-only polling may become the industry’s standard over time.

• Rep Virginia Foxx, R-5th District, will join the deficit-fighting Concord Coalition in Salisbury Monday for a workshop to bring the public into discussions about ways to reduce government deficits and debt.

• Real Clear Politics reports on four August Republican U.S. Senate primaries that could inspire hope or fear in Democratic incumbents. Three take place this week: today in Kansas, Thursday in Tennessee, and Saturday in Hawaii.