Flickers of Life for Democrats in Senate Races; Keystone Fallback; Postal Workers Protest

FRESH POLLS support our our view that it’s too early for Republicans to anticipate a takeover of the Senate this fall.  There could be methodology problems with some of these polls (registered voters vs. likely voters) but they appear to show that Sen. Mark Pryor (D) leads in Arkansas, Kay Hagan (D) is roughly even in North Carolina, and Mary Landrieu (D) is ahead in Louisiana.  All three are considered highly vulnerable.

MEANWHILE, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R) may be facing a surprisingly close race in Kentucky; his approval rating has risen a little, but it’s still in dangerous territory for an incumbent.  And we continue to think that voters in Georgia may rebel against the gun nuts and the “personhood” advocates and support Michelle Nunn (D), which could give the Democrats a pickup.

Read the Full Research Report Here

Barack Obama and John Boehner Face the Legacy Issue

AFTER THIS FALL’S ELECTIONS, Barack Obama and John Boehner essentially will be focusing on their legacies; Obama will have about two years left in office and Boehner is widely expected to step down, perhaps even sooner.  So an intriguing question arises: what “legacy” issues will they pursue?

Read the Full Research Report Here.

The Democrats’ Wish List — Three Major Issues

GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN:   Just as the politicians abandon confrontation, here comes a government shutdown today as a major storm hits the East Coast.  Janet Yellen’s second day of testimony has been cancelled, along with just about everything else.  So this might be a good time to check in on the Democrats’ retreat . . .

A SHORT WISH LIST:  Democrats at their Eastern Maryland offsite are focusing on three major issues.  Here’s our take: … Read the Full Research Report Here

Morning Bullets: Obamacare Delay; Debt Ceiling Dance; Sequester Forever?

LOSE-LOSE: We’ll defer to our colleague Paul Heldman on the health care implications of the latest White House delay in the ACA for businesses.  But our take is still another arbitrary change in the law is a negative for the administration politically and economically…. Read the Full Research Report Here.

EM Crisis Unlikely to Affect Fed, Don Kohn Says; Obama’s Pen; The Monica Lewinsky Factor

THE EMERGING MARKET CRISIS is “worrisome,” former Fed Vice Chairman Don Kohn told PRG clients on Friday, but it’s unlikely to deter the FOMC from a $10 billion step-down in asset purchases this week.  The Fed traditionally views EM crises “through the prism of how they affect the U.S. economy,” Don said, and the outlook here is still for GDP growth of about 3% in 2014… Read the Full Research Report Here