TPM News

Congressional Democrats have had some reason to be optimistic about retaking the House in 2012, as national polls have shown high disapproval of Congressional Republicans despite taking control less than a year ago. But a new poll of battleground districts currently held by the GOP that has some disappointing news for Dems: anger at Congress is hitting them hard too, and the Presidential race may provide them with a drag rather than a boost in their hopes to retake the House.

Dems had an edge in early August on the generic congressional ballot in a Gallup poll, showing that a majority of Americans nationwide were more likely to vote for a Democratic candidate, and other polling has run fairly even. But the battleground poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner on behalf of Democracy Corps showed a much difficult picture within these swing districts.

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President Obama has made much of the fact that a lot of the ideas in his American Jobs Act have long been supported by Republicans, at least in theory, especially the various tax credits included in the proposal. The DNC is up with a video ahead of Thursday's debate highlighting Mitt Romney's praise for at least some individual components, like a tax break for companies who hire long term unemployed, even as he bashes the overall plan. Take a look:

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On immigration, Bachmann says she’d police every yard of the southern border… And that she’d end programs that – basically – are nice to immigrants, because “those are magnets.” Dangerous grounds for Perry here, who’s had to actually take a nuanced and practical approach to these matters given he’s governed a border state.

We should know tonight whether Congress is in genuinely the throes of another government shutdown fight, or whether Democrats and Republicans will figure out a way to avoid their impulses.

Instead of cutting a deal with Democrats to keep the government funded, and re-up FEMA's disaster aid fund, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) is trying to build support by dangling carrots before reluctant Republicans and whacking Democrats with sticks.

As reported, about four dozen House conservatives don't support the existing government funding bill or "continuing resolution" because it does not, in their minds, slash enough money from federal programs. Democrats oppose the bill en masse because it also includes a requirement that federal disaster aid be twinned with cuts to particular federal programs, in order to offset the cost -- a highly unusual, and controversial requirement

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Bachmann says taxpayers should keep ‘every dollar’ they earn.

Here’s a shot of the scene at the GOP presidential debate. Nine candidates in all, with the addition of Gary Johnson to the lineup.

Megyn Kelly asks Gingrich how he can propose slashing spending by 40 percent given the resistance in Washington.

“Well, the way you’ve asked the question, you can’t,” he replies. But, he continues, if you’re going to assume things are going to go on the way they are at the moment, then “we might as well all go out and buy Greek bonds and go like that.”

After Mitt Romney attacked Rick Perry for his anti-Social Security statements in his book, Perry fired back — by pointing to Romney’s own book.

Perry noted that in the original hardcover edition of Romney’s book, the Massachusetts health care plan — which is based on the individual mandate that was later adopted by President Obama for federal health care reform — was touted as a model for the nation: “Then in your paperback, you took that line out.”

Is Romney digging at Gary Johnson? He says, “I spent four years as a governor; I didn’t inhale.”