They also raise the question of when the President will bike again, and how radically Katrina changes the focus of his time for the foreseeable future.
A cliché-addled Senate GOP leadership aide tells Roll Call's Mark Preston: "This is the perfect storm for the president…. We have rising gas prices, patience running thin with the war in Iraq and now Katrina. Coupled with lame-duck status, it is an uphill battle for him."
The New York Post plays up Barbara Bush's public radio comments about the conditions at the Houston Astrodome. LINK
The politics of Katrina: Congress reacts:
The Wall Street Journal's Rogers and Fialka have the best congressional agenda story, with a focus on what the majority party wants to do about energy prices (free market solutions beckon) and about the powerful Midwestern ag interests who have a stake in the emergency too.
And check out the populist, profane bravado from Frist spokesguy Bob Stevenson in the New York Times: "'Oil companies,' Mr. Stevenson said, 'have a responsibility to ensure that the prices reflected at the pump are at reasonable levels, and should that not be the case, I would expect there could be hell to pay in Congress.'" LINK
The Washington Post's Shailagh Murray and Charles Babington label Dr./Leader/Sen. Frist's decision to shelve temporarily a Senate vote to permanently repeal the estate tax as "one sign of GOP unease." LINK
The Washington Post's ed board thinks Frist was wise to postpone a vote on repealing the estate tax. LINK
Janet Hook in the Los Angeles Times on the congressional agenda: LINK
The politics of Katrina: 41/42/43:
The best part of the Nagourney/Broder New York Times look at the Bush/Clinton/Bush/Clinton dynamic comes at the very end when we get our first public glimpse into how Sen. Clinton sees her role in political affairs in comparison to her husband. LINK
"'He is no longer in politics,' she said. 'He is a former president with an enormous amount of influence and just as during the tsunami, he is willing to serve his country. He has expressed strong feelings about the way this has been handled. My role is different. I'm on the front lines dealing with these issues day to day.'"
We trust that first part of the quote will appear in a "She said it…" RNC press release on a date still to be determined.
Former President Clinton told CNN: "Our government failed those people in the beginning, and I take it now there is no dispute about it. One hundred percent of the people I've talked to here recognize that it was a failure, and I personally believe that there should be a serious analysis of it." LINK
The Washington Times' Jennifer Harper Noticed Bill and Hillary Clinton's "tag-team" action on Hurricane Katrina yesterday with the former president saying "there should be an analysis of what happened" and the former first lady calling for the creation of a Katrina Commission. LINK
The Washington Times' Bill Sammon Notes that former President Clinton "suggested he had been more attentive to the dangers of flooding in New Orleans than his successor." LINK
The politics of Katrina: assigning blame:
The Wall Street Journal's front-page look focuses on federal blame, while a former state legislator named Bob Williams gives strong voice on the paper's op-ed page to explaining why Mayor Nagin and Governor Blanco deserve perhaps more of the blame (We wonder how this op-ed got placed. . .).