The funniest line: “There’s an excitement about what this president is trying to do” on the campaign trail. That must explain why pieces like this are now regular features on op-ed pages and why the AP is running polls about O-bots either staying home in droves or defecting to the GOP. This is why they pay you the big bucks, Gibbsy.

Don’t be too hard on him. The last time he dared utter a discouraging word, Pelosi — who’s been in Baghdad Bob mode about the midterms for six months — wouldn’t let him hear the end of it. If you were him and had to choose, what would you do? Cheerily lie to a national audience? Or tell the terrible truth and set yourself up as a post-election scapegoat for a politician so widely reviled that her own party’s now running attack ads against her? It’s no contest. And speaking of no contest, here’s the latest grim milestone alert from Nate Silver:

FiveThirtyEight’s projection for the U.S. House shows little change from last week. Republicans are given a 73 percent chance of taking over the House, up incrementally from 72 percent last week. During an average simulation run, Republicans finished with 227 seats, up from 226 last week; this would suggest a net gain of 48 seats from the 179 they hold currently.

However, there is considerable uncertainty in the forecast because of the unusually large number of House seats now in play. A gain of as large as 70-80 seats is not completely out of the question if everything broke right for Republicans. Conversely, if Democrats managed to see a material rebound in their national standing over the final two weeks of the campaign, they could lose as few as 20-30 seats, as relatively few individual districts are certain pickups for Republicans.

Gibbs’s prescription for a “material rebound,” apparently, is a lot more Barack Obama on the stump. Oh, and a few new shots from Axelrod at the Chamber of Commerce. How could that possibly backfire? Hmmm:

Democratic leaders in the House and Senate criticizing GOP groups for allegedly funneling foreign money into campaign ads have seen their party raise more than $1 million from political action committees affiliated with foreign companies.

House and Senate Democrats have received approximately $1.02 million this cycle from such PACs, according to an analysis compiled for The Hill by the Center for Responsive Politics. House and Senate GOP leaders have taken almost $510,000 from PACs on the same list…

“Barack Obama criticized the Supreme Court and his adversaries over the bogus charge of foreign money tainting elections – while leaders in his own party had taken more than a million dollars from the foreign cookie jar,” said Jonathan Collegio, a spokesman for American Crossroads, the political group at the center of the controversy.

Rasmussen’s midterm prediction as of today, incidentally: 55 seats.

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