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?
Carol in Northampton, Massachusetts writes:
To coin a cliché, it's the economy, Jack. Anger and even fear have a way of disappearing when the pockets are full.
Joe in North Carolina writes:
I'm of a mind, like most, that we should throw out all the incumbents. While I don't trust them any better, I'm also in favor of having the GOP have control of the Congress, since history has shown us that when one party has full control, things just tend to go from bad to worse.
Richard in Washington writes:
The gulf spill is the big story. I am a big Obama fan but I am not feeling too good about how he is dealing with this. He needs to plant the White House in Louisiana until the crisis is over instead of vacations in Chicago. The governor needs him there 24/7. I am disappointed. I just don't understand why presidents continue to fail when most needed.
Nancy in Michigan writes:
While I hope that the debate will be over substantive issues like the ones you mentioned, it is far more likely that they will find some trivial issue to argue, twist, and lie about. Neither party has a foot to stand on when it gets down to important issues. There are no easy answers, and no one has the guts to give us the hard truth!
Kent in Pennsylvania writes:
Being unemployed for the last year only serves to bring Bill Clinton's prophetic words into focus: "It's the economy, stupid." The midterm elections will start to clean out the greedy, spineless poll-watchers in Congress. I'm from Pennsylvania and I'm proud as hell to see Specter riding his rocking chair.
Lucy in New York writes:
The oil disaster will be number one, even if they cap it next week, but health care, which was forced down our throats, will make a huge difference in who is elected.
Tom in California writes:
I have finished eating my apple pie and I think that the stories that will shape the debate of the midterm elections will be: the health care bill, the Arizona immigration bill, the oil disaster and the national debt. At work, I am the boss so I can go on the "Cafferty File" blog whenever I want.