June 1st, 2010
06:00 PM ET

What stories will shape debate going into midterm elections?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

With the midterm elections only months away, Americans are fed up with both major political parties.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/05/13/art.elephant.donkey.jpg caption=" "]
A new Gallup Poll shows near record-low favorable ratings for both Democrats and Republicans. The GOP has a measly 36 percent favorable rating - that's only five points above their all-time low in 1998 when the Republican-led Congress voted to impeach President Clinton.

The Democrats aren't much better. Their favorable rating is only 43 percent - just a couple points higher than their record low, which came during the recent health care debate.

Gallup says that low ratings don't usually occur for both parties simultaneously. Typically when one is down, the other is up. But this just goes to show you how disgusted Americans are with politicians of all stripes these days.

Meanwhile in a piece called "Stories that Could Rock the Summer," Politico looks at some of the issues that could shake up the elections in the next couple of months.

At the top of the list, no surprise: The Gulf oil spill - which could continue into August.

Then there's hurricane season - which is expected to be "very aggressive" and could once again put the focus on the government's preparedness, or lack thereof, for a natural disaster. Plus, don't forget all those other oil wells in the Gulf where the hurricanes blow.

There's also the possibility of a summertime terrorist attack which could certainly affect the midterms... and of course there's the economy. History suggests if unemployment is in double digits, that's bad news for the party in power. Right now we're hovering just below 10 percent. And we'll get a big jobs report on Friday.

Here’s my question to you: What stories will shape the debate going into the fall's midterm elections?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Democrats • Elections • GOP • Gulf oil spill • Senate and Congress
June 1st, 2010
05:00 PM ET

Is Gulf oil spill Pres. Obama's Katrina?


In this NASA handout, the oil slick is seen off the coast of Louisiana with a portion flowing south from the accident site in the Gulf of Mexico. BP will reportedly make another attempt today at stifling at least part of the undersea oil gusher by trying to saw through the pipe leaking the oil. (PHOTO CREDIT: NASA via GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

It's been 43 days since the start of the Gulf coast oil spill. And the biggest environmental catastrophe in U.S. history has many asking if this disaster has become President Obama's "Katrina."

Once again the people of the Gulf coast have been devastated; and they're calling on both the oil giant BP and President Obama to do more. BP keeps trying - so far unsuccessfully - to stop the leak; and it could be as late as August before a permanent fix is found.

Meanwhile the president is pushing back against criticism that his administration didn't act quickly enough, saying the Katrina analogy is just "flat out wrong."

But some Gulf coast residents say the response to this crisis is even worse than George Bush's response to Katrina - and that's saying a lot. They say there's a disconnect between what the administration says and what's actually happening on the ground.

While the White House insists the law requires BP to clean up its own mess - some environmentalists say the government should just take over the response.

As for Mr. Obama, Maureen Dowd of the New York Times says he waited too long to show his outrage over this and other issues: "The man whose presidency is rooted in his ability to inspire withholds that inspiration when it is most needed."

Here’s my question to you: Has the Gulf oil spill become President Obama's Katrina?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Gulf oil spill