By BRIAN A. HOWEY, in Indianapolis

1. Trump's anemic approval

Here are your Tuesday power lunch talking points: The new ABC/Washington Post  poll puts President Trump’s job approval at 38% among likely voters, and 40% among registered voters. That’s down from 44% in July. What has happened since the July survey? A spate of lethal mass shootings with Trump wavering on any legislative action, what looks to be a prolonged trade war with China, and the Hurricane Dorian/Alabama Sharpie farce. Just 35% approve of Trump’s handling of the China trade war. Among crucial independent voters, Trump is completely underwater, with 36% approving and 58% disapproving. Trump’s Real Clear Politics approval/disapprove composite stands at an anemic 43/53.9%. A politician with job approval in the 40% range or below is an endangered species.

How about some historical context? Presidents who won reelection in the television age all had much better first term approval measured by Gallup than Trump, with Presidents Harry Truman at 45.6%, Dwight Eisenhower at 69.6%, Lyndon Johnson at 74.2%, Richard Nixon at 55.8%, Ronald Reagan at 50.3%, Bill Clinton at 49.6%, George W. Bush at 62.2% and Barack Obama at 49.1%. And the losers? Presidents Jerry Ford stood at 47.2%, Jimmy Carter at 45.5% and George H.W. Bush at 60.9%. President Trump is in a class all by himself.

2. Trump and guns

President Trump meets with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Majority Whip John Thune, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Minority Whip Steve Scalise today to discuss the fall agenda. This is a key meeting as Republicans try to figure out where Trump is on gun reform issues. He has been hard to pin down and McConnell won’t move any legislation unless he knows Trump will sign it. An ABC/Washington Post Poll released Sunday revealed 86% of Americans support red flag laws, 89% support expanding federal background checks, and 56% back a ban on military assault weapons. President Trump, Wayne LaPierre is on Line 1.

3. Donato continues the IGA gender wave

The female gender wave in Indiana General Assembly caucuses continued Monday night with Cass County Councilwoman Stacey Donato winning SD18 to replace the retiring Sen. Randy Head. By the fifth round, Donato faced off against Flora Town Councilman Jake Adams and former Miami County Sheriff Tim Miller. She ended up winning the final ballot with 42 votes. She joins new State Reps. Dollyne Sherman and Ann Vermillion who replace retiring Reps. Dave Frizzell and Kevin Mahan.

4. Clark Judge pleads guilty

Clark County Judge Andrew Adams pled guilty to a battery resulting in bodily injury charge stemming from an early morning confrontation at an Indianapolis White Castle on May 1. Adams admitted he kicked Brandon Kaiser during the altercation and got a 365 day suspended sentence. A separate Marion County Grand Jury indicted Kaiser and Alfredo Vazquez for their alleged roles in the altercation that ended in gunfire, wounding Adams and Clark Judge Brad Jacobs. From a political standpoint, Judge Adams is the last elected countywide Democrat in Clark County. Judge Adams is also facing action from the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications and The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended him. So elected Democrats in Clark County are an endangered species. This case also brings to mind an admonishment made by countless judges: Nothing good ever happens after a night of heavy drinking at a strip club in a White Castle parking lot at 3:30 in the morning.

5. A  spy extraction

The CIA had an asset close to Russian President Putin’s inner circle. But the New York Times  and other media are reporting that he had to be extracted over fears that President Trump might reveal his identity. NYT: As American officials began to realize that Russia was trying to sabotage the 2016 presidential election, the informant became one of the CIA’s most important — and highly protected — assets. But when intelligence officials revealed the severity of Russia’s election interference with unusual detail later that year (2016), the news media picked up on details about the CIA’s Kremlin sources. CIA officials worried about safety made the arduous decision in late 2016 to offer to extract the source from Russia. CNN: The decision to extract the informant was driven “in part” because of concerns that Mr. Trump and his administration had mishandled delicate intelligence.

Thanks for reading, folks. It’s The Atomic!