POLITICAL WIRE’S HEADLINES – 8/10
A new CNN/Opinion Research poll finds lot of that anger directed toward the Republican party.
Key findings: Favorable views of the Republican party dropped eight points over the past month to 33%. Meanwhile, 59% say they have an unfavorable view of the Republican party, an all-time high dating back to 1992 when the question was first asked.
President Obama’s advisers “are preparing to center the president’s re-election campaign on a ferocious personal assault on Mitt Romney’s character and business background, a strategy grounded in the early stage expectation that the former Massachusetts governor is the likely GOP nominee,” Politico reports.
“The dramatic and unabashedly negative turn is the product of political reality. Obama remains personally popular, but pluralities in recent polling disapprove of his handling of his job and Americans fear the country is on the wrong track. His aides are increasingly resigned to running for re-election in a glum nation. And so the candidate who ran on “hope” in 2008 has little choice four years later but to run a slashing, personal campaign aimed at disqualifying his likeliest opponent.”
Romney’s campaign responds: “It is disgraceful that President Obama’s campaign has launched his re-election with the stated goal to ‘kill’ his opponent with an onslaught of negative and personal attacks. President Obama will say and do desperate things to hold onto power because he knows he has failed.”
“The word compromise is not a filthy word. If you can’t learn to compromise an issue without compromising yourself then you shouldn’t be a legislator.”
— Former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-WY), quoted by National Public Radio.
In Wisconsin there are “a series of recall elections unprecedented in the history of the state or nation,” the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
“With control of the Wisconsin Senate in the balance, six Republican state senators will face a recall vote Tuesday. One Democratic senator has already weathered a recall attempt, and on Aug. 16, two more Democrats will be up for recall.”
First Read: “Dems feel good about two of the GOP seats (Hopper’s and Kapanke’s), while two others are toss-ups (Darling’s and Olsen’s). But given the likely low turnout, no one knows how the races will play out.”
Bottom line: If Democrats gain a net three state Senate seats, they will take back control of that chamber. But it doensn’t end there. Next week, Democrats must defend two more seats in additional recall elections.
First Read: “On the one hand, the White House doesn’t want to look like it’s panicking (a la John McCain’s call to suspend his campaign after Lehman’s crash in the fall of ’08). And Team Obama’s first instinct is to always under-react; in fact, you saw that in his speech yesterday afternoon. On the other hand, the Obama White House needs to look like it’s in charge of the situation, even if world markets are reacting more to the debt crisis in Europe rather than the political situation in Washington.”
“The Obama White House’s pattern in the past has been to tune out the Washington chatter and then react to it on its own timetable. Perhaps they’ll be proven right in the long run, but it looks riskier today than it has before when they’ve chosen caution over a high-profile political/policy gamble.”
“The president of the United States addressed the country yesterday afternoon. And we saw in his remarks — both in content and tone — that his call to the nation that he used in 2008 of hope and change became hope and blame. And he began to act like a manure spreader in a wind storm, throwing things in every direction without any real focus.”
— Tim Pawlenty, quoted by NBC News, on the campaign trail in Iowa.
A new USA Today/Gallup poll finds that just 24% of respondents say most members of Congress deserve reelection, the worst result since Gallup began polling the question in 1991.
Looking at another wave: “Fifty-six percent say their own representative deserves another term, similar to the levels just before tumultuous elections in 1994, 2006 and 2010 that changed control of the House or Senate… Less clear is whether voters are ready to blame one party or the other, another ingredient of a ‘wave.'”
“I was the governor, so I’m sort of the front person, win or lose. If it had failed, I would have been getting the blame. The reason it won was this was an unprecedented group effort.”
— New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), quoted by The Advocate, sharing the credit for passing a same sex marriage law in New York.