In the political game of chicken that the tax cuts debate became, Obama may have blinked first, but he secured unemployment benefits extensions and other Democratic priorities.
The 2012 election is shaping up to be a big opportunity for Republicans. If they don't win a Senate majority on Election Day 2010, they'll have plenty of vulnerable seats to contest in 2012.
Increasing numbers of Americans can vote by mail or absentee ballots. This makes it harder for polls to gauge who the winner might be and means some close races might not be called for days.
Democrats failed to move forward on a bill that would have ended a tax break critics say rewards companies who send jobs abroad. Legislation is going nowhere ahead of Election 2010.
Smart politics and good economics both suggest that the Democrats make this the central issue of the midterm elections.
Congress has a vast to-do list before midterm elections, including spending bills and a $30 billion package to help small businesses. But for now, the Bush tax cuts are the top issue.
House Republican leader John Boehner said he’d vote to extend tax cuts for middle-class Americans even if the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy were allowed to expire. Did he mean it, or was it a calculated move to get President Obama off his back?
As the November midterm election approaches, it seems to be dire straits for Democrats. Obama and other party leaders will have to energize their base in order to turn it around.
Republicans are almost sure to pick up seats after the 2010 Senate races are over. But they also have an outside shot at retaking the majority in the upper chamber.
Surging challenges to two Democratic incumbents – Patty Murray in Washington and Russ Feingold in Wisconsin – are a reason that chances for Republican takeover of the US Senate may be rising in Election 2010.