Democrats Happy to See August End
By Ben Pershing
Today begins the final week before Congress returns to session, but the proliferation of news has made it difficult to differentiate the normally sedate August recess from the rest of the political calendar.
In the last week alone, Ted Kennedy died, Ben Bernanke was reappointed, Eric Holder named a prosecutor to probe interrogation practices and the CIA released an explosive report on the same topic. In the weeks before that, there were fierce debates over health-care town halls, "death panels" and whether President Obama had mishandled his signature legislative initiative. Not to mention the fact that Paula Abdul announced she was leaving American Idol and Jon and Kate Gosselin continued their war of words. It's been a busy month -- and a rough one for Obama.
The accumulated controversies of the summer have taken their toll on Democrats. Politico reports that "the small universe of political analysts who closely follow House races is predicting moderate to heavy Democratic losses in 2010." Charlie Cook says it's even money that Democrats will lose more than 20 seats next November, while Nate Silver and Stu Rothenberg have similarly dire predictions for the majority. Pollster.com pegs Obama's average approval rating at 49 percent, down more than 10 points since Memorial Day.
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Posted at 9:06 AM ET on Aug 31, 2009
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