FROM Brian Faughnan
This Year's Mid-Term Elections: Which Party Will Party? After one year in office, President Obama has yet to deliver his first State of the Union address, but his approval ratings are on the decline. This week, three Democrats made headlines by deciding not to stand for re-election, provoking reports that the party's in big trouble. But even more Republicans are dropping out, the GOP's short of money, and Chairman Michael Steele says his party's " not ready " to seize control on Capitol Hill. We look at the prospects for this year's mid-term elections. Will they determine whether President Obama finally succeeds or fails? Will the Democrats lose control on Capitol Hill? Should Republicans and Democrats appeal to their most ideological voters or move to the center?
Can President Obama Organize America? To demand action from Congress — on healthcare, energy independence and the stimulus package — the President's using the bully pulpit. That's business as usual. But Obama's extraordinary campaign apparatus may give him a new kind of political weapon. With e-mail, social networking sites and text messaging, he can directly reach some 13 million Americans who supported his presidential campaign. The call has gone out for neighborhood meetings this weekend to discuss his agenda and how to get it approved on Capitol Hill. Will the "online army" that transformed campaigning change government too? What's the risk of backlash from Congress and from the "army" itself?
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.