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August 9, 2013

11:01
A.M.

The Fix Live

Total Responses: 67

About the hosts

About the host

Host: Chris Cillizza

Chris Cillizza

Chris Cillizza is the managing editor of PostPolitics and he writes "The Fix," a politics blog for The Washington Post. He also covers the White House for the newspaper and website. Chris has appeared as a guest on NBC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, Fox News Channel and CNN to talk politics. He lives in Virginia with his wife and sons.

About the topic

The Fix's Chris Cillizza discussed the latest in political news.

Follow @TheFix on Twitter.
Q.

Chris Cillizza :

Good morning everyone! Happy Friday.

On my mind today:

1. I am through 2 episodes of "House of Cards" and, well, it stinks. Prove me wrong.

2. President Obama presser today. 3 pm.

3. Is an iced mocha less bad for you than a hot mocha?

Let's do it.

Q.

Eye Test

Lundergan Grimes passes the eye test. She looks sharp and tough enough to take on McConnell and all the reinforcements helping him keep his seat. She isn't one of those candidates who makes me say, "OK, there's no way I can even imagine this person winning a tough race."
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I agree.

Writing our latest Senate rankings as we speak.  Kentucky is moving up the chart because ALG is credible if not outstanding. Her initial Senate announcement was a disaster but I think national Democrats have stepped in and righted the ship somewhat.

And, McConnell never wins with an overwhelming percentage of the vote. He got in the low 50s against bruce Lunsford in 2008. And Bruce Lunsford was, um, a terrible candidate.

– August 09, 2013 11:05 AM
Q.

Holding My Nose

I assume the fine people in Kentucky are going to hear this over and over again in campaign commercials?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Matt Bevin -- mcConnell's primary challenger -- probably already has that ad cut.

I would say that, generally, people don't care about staff stories. That's insidery stuff. But if Bevin is smart he can use this staff story to illuminate the narrative that mcConnell is trying to pool the wool over conservatives eyes.

I really liked what deputy Fix Sean Sullivan wrote about it all this morning: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/08/09/why-holding-my-nose-is-a-problem-for-mitch-mcconnell/

– August 09, 2013 11:07 AM
Q.

Chuck Todd

What do you make of Chuck making news (rather than reporting it)?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I like that Chuck is willing to put himself out there and express what I assume is a common thought at NBC News.

 

– August 09, 2013 11:08 AM
Q.

Hillary alternative

I think the best bet for someone beating Hillary in the Dem primary is someone not from the Acela Corridor, someone who is extremely personable. She's going to win the establishment and the money but could lose if she doesn't connect with the actual voters. So...anyone come to mind?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Beating her would be very difficult. I honestly think the best person positioned to do so would be Elizabeth Warren. But I see no scenario where Warren runs against Hillary.

I think a Russ Feingold or Howard Dean would also be interesting but would ulitmately not be able to come close to knocking off Hillary.

– August 09, 2013 11:09 AM
Q.

PA Gov

Would Corbett on the ballot help or hurt Democrats' chances at winning?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Help.

– August 09, 2013 11:09 AM
Q.

2016 Dem Primary

Fix, Should the Dem primary be competitive (ie if HRC does not run) what do you think will be the main issues that the candidates will use to differentiate themselves from one another?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

GREAT question.

1. Labor will be a big split. What's the right place public/private unions.

2. Libertarian/establishment particularly on NSA etc.

Other ideas?

– August 09, 2013 11:10 AM
Q.

Mitch McConnell

The race has gotten so good that we have not even reached 2014 yet. My money is that he had the Worst Week in Washington.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I don't think that's the worst bet you have ever made.

– August 09, 2013 11:11 AM
Q.

Talents

Where have you taken your talents this morning? What are you listening to?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Modern Vampires in the City by Vampire Weekend.

Which is my top 3 albums of 2013 so far along with "Southeastern" by Jason Isbell and "The Beast In Its Tracks" by Josh Ritter.

– August 09, 2013 11:11 AM
Q.

Rand Paul

What is his biggest obstacle to winning the GOP nomination? And what is his biggest asset? Personally, I would pick (1) widespread distrust among GOP elites of his foreign policy views and (2) his ability to build upon his father's political following.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I generally agree.

I think the biggest obstacle is that he is not, at the end of the day, anywhere close to the party's establishment on foreign policy. And, usually, an establishment candidate -- McCain, Romney, Bush -- wins the nomination.

That said, i think Rand has the best case to make that he can grow and change the group of voters a Republican candidate can appeal to.

– August 09, 2013 11:13 AM
Q.

2016 Rankings

I'd have to think Rubio is no longer #1. You need Christie and Rand Paul (I can't believe I'm saying this) ahead of him, right?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

We ranked last week and I left Rubio at #1, Christie at #2 and Rand at #2.

I could be conv9inced to flipo flop Christie and Rubio...

Here's my GOP rankings: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/07/26/libertarianism-and-the-coming-republican-political-war/ 

– August 09, 2013 11:14 AM
Q.

Carlos Danger

My question is short: What reason does Weiner have to stay in the NYC mayoral race? Is he trolling?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Why get out now if you are him? Why not see it through? it's another month.

– August 09, 2013 11:14 AM
Q.

Tomrrow Night

Will The Cillizza be at RFK tomorrow night to see Chelsea playing Roma?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

No. I wish. Although Chelsea and Arsenal go back and forth for me on EPL team I dislike the most.

– August 09, 2013 11:14 AM
Q.

House Of Cards

What did you think of the lighting quick legislative process illustrated in HOC?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Yeah, just put 6 kids in a room and they will write the bill.

– August 09, 2013 11:15 AM
Q.

Fall

Is it sad that college football and pumpkin spice lattes are the first things I think of when picturing fall?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I think of the following things in order when it comes to fall:

1. Catholic University field hockey

2. Catholic University field hockey

3. VA governor's race

4. Pumpkin Spice Lattes

5. The Great Pumpkin

– August 09, 2013 11:16 AM
Q.

Holding my nose ... on House of Cards

I was excited to have another "The West Wing" to watch, but found that "House of Cards" wasn't even "Scandal"-worthy. That said, it does get better after the first two episodes. I'd say about episode six it falls into an interesting narrative that at least makes it average. So, have you rated good DC TV shows? Does "The West Wing" lead the field?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Ok, I will try to stick with it. But Mrs. Fix and I are a united front on the fact that ythe first 2 episodes stink.

Things I don't like:

1. Frank Underwood speaking directly to the camera to say things like "I dream of their faces lightly salted sizzling on a frying pan."

2. The Robin Wright character. Everything about it.

3. The portrayal of female reporters.

4. The coke-sniffing PA Congressman

 

– August 09, 2013 11:18 AM
Q.

House of Cards

West Wing or House of Cards- which is the more accurate depiction of how business gets done in Washington? Seems like House of Cards better handles the secret dealings and corporate influence in elections and laws.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I wasn't a huge "West Wing" guy either. I know, I know...I am lame.

I DO believe so much of what happens in DC and why is personality driven. But "House of Cards" turns that idea so outlandish that's it hard for me to get into it.

– August 09, 2013 11:19 AM
Q.

House of Cards

Keep watching . . .
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I will. Maybe.

– August 09, 2013 11:19 AM
Q.

Fix Sean

Fix Sean is doing a great job!!
A.
Chris Cillizza :

He is TERRIFIC.

– August 09, 2013 11:19 AM
Q.

re: iced mocha badness

Anything with ice is less bad for you, since the ice takes up some of the volume in the cup. Unless you ordered a Grande, Lard Lad.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I ordered a Grande. OH MAN.

– August 09, 2013 11:19 AM
Q.

House of Cards

I'm not surprised you don't like the show. People often roll their eyes at TV shows that portray their own profession (lawyers complain about lawyer shows, doctors about doctor shows, etc). House of Cards doesn't exactly portray political journalism in the most realistic light...
A.
Chris Cillizza :

If I was a female political reporter, the Zoe Barnes character would drive me insane.

She developed Frank Underwood as a source because she went to his house and showed him a picture of him looking at her butt? Huh?

– August 09, 2013 11:20 AM
Q.

Mitch McConnell

Explain the bad blood between McConnell and Kentucky conservatives. He started off in politics as a protege of moderate Sen. John Sherman Cooper (Vietnam dove, big civil rights supporter) -- is there a tribal sense of "not one of us?"
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Well, he is the Senate Minority Leader. That equals establishment. And many grassroots conservatives loathe the establishment.

– August 09, 2013 11:21 AM
Q.

Cupcake Chat

Where is Cupcake chat?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Been asking myself that same thing all day.

– August 09, 2013 11:21 AM
Q.

Cory Booker

Does he reconsider not running in 2016? Or does he position himself behind the Clintons to get on the short list for VP?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Yes, of course he does. Read this: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/08/01/cory-booker-says-he-wont-run-for-president-in-2016-and-we-believe-him-sort-of/

– August 09, 2013 11:22 AM
Q.

House of Cards

You've got to get through episode 4 or 5. My initial reaction to the show is that it feels like a play, not a TV show. It took me aback at first, but what exactly is your aversion to it?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

See above. But I will go through a few more episodes.

To me the gulf between "Broadchurch" or "Orphan Black" and "HOC" is like the gulf between the athletic ability of me and LeBron.

– August 09, 2013 11:22 AM
Q.

HRC

I don't think it will be tough to beat her. One of the main reasons she lost in 08' is people are burnt out on the Clinton's. Why would that change 8 years later.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

There is no Barack Obama figure out there that I can see...

– August 09, 2013 11:24 AM
Q.

RE: Dem primary issues

Support or opposition to a "grand bargain" will be more divisive for a non-Hillary primary.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Ah, interesting. Good thought. If we ever get to a grand bargain of course. I am skeptical.

– August 09, 2013 11:24 AM
Q.

Re: Rand Paul

One another problem: his sort of libertarian economics -- e.g. big cutbacks in social programs -- could be a VERY tough sell in a general election.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Yup. He broadens certain parts of the GOP electorate and shrinks others.  He's intriguing.

– August 09, 2013 11:25 AM
Q.

House of Cards

Curious to know why you have such a negative initial reaction? Cast, plot, pacing? Fourteen Emmy noms is a rather strong vote of confidence?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Talking to the camera in snarky yet badly written asides.

Unrealistic characters that are built entirely on bad stereotypes.

– August 09, 2013 11:26 AM
Q.

Hillary primary opponents

Assuming Hillary runs, who is likely to actually challenge her for the nomination? Martin O'Malley? Anybody else? You mentioned Feingold and Dean, but do they seem to be actually moving in that direction? PS I am loving Dan Balz's book.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

BUY DAN'S BOOK! A great read.

http://www.amazon.com/Collision-2012-Romney-Elections-America/dp/0670025941

– August 09, 2013 11:27 AM
Q.

House of Cards

My husband loved it and watched the entire season over a weekend. I found it too over the top. (I'm the other husband, so it's not a man/woman thing.)
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I just think it spends WAY too much time on bad DC cliches.

– August 09, 2013 11:27 AM
Q.

Vampire Weekend, Jason Isbell & Josh Ritter

Thanks, I was getting kind of tired of my Pandora shuffle.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

All amazing. The Isbell album is freaking amazinmg.

– August 09, 2013 11:28 AM
Q.

Malcolm Tucker

What do you think of Malcolm Tucker (aka Peter Capaldi) being the new Doctor on Doctor Who?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I know nothing of this though I saw it was a big deal with people I like over the weekend. Do I need to add this to the Fix watch list?

– August 09, 2013 11:29 AM
Q.

Mochas, House of Cards and Carlos Danger

Sorry, temperature doesn't affect calorie counts (if it did, I'd eat everything at that one temperature). Please stick with House of Cards, as it gets better soon. As for Senor Danger, I actually want him to stay in the race. Let him lose badly and figure out that he has no political future and has to find something else to do to meet his insatiable need for attention, which isn't funded by taxpayers.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I endorse almost this entire tweet.

– August 09, 2013 11:30 AM
Q.

Obama presser

Why now? Will there be a moment of silence for Helen Thomas? Will any news be committed? Does it seem like we're hearing less and less from Joe Biden?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

He's going on vacation for 8 days. He wants to sound off on a bunch of topics before he does that. A presser is his best chance to do that.

– August 09, 2013 11:31 AM
Q.

Books!

I'm a History major hoping to go to grad school with a focus on the presidency. What do you think are some essential books on this topic?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Check this list of the besgt biographies of each of the presidents: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2012/12/05/the-best-of-the-best-presidential-biographies-2/

– August 09, 2013 11:32 AM
Q.

The size of your drink

Grande is 16 oz. but a Venti (iced) is 24 oz. You are not in gallon bucket territory with a grande.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I've always though a small was 64 oz. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ish8NBunrQU

– August 09, 2013 11:33 AM
Q.

Robin Wright character

I will be interested to hear whether your opinion of her changes over the course of the show. Mine did a 180 by the end.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Ok...I may stick around just for that. I don't like when married couoples relationships are portrayed so unrealistically.

That's what made me LOVE "Friday Night Lights". The Connie Britton-Kyle Chandler relationship is the closest thing to a real marriage I have ever seen on TV.

– August 09, 2013 11:35 AM
Q.

House of Cards

I dropped HOC pretty quickly. Have you cracked into Orange is the New Black yet?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Haven't yet. But planning to.

– August 09, 2013 11:35 AM
Q.

like the gulf between the athletic ability of me and LeBron.

One of The Fix's best qualities--no false hubris.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Never!

– August 09, 2013 11:35 AM
Q.

Breaking Bad?

How does Walter White's story end?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Now THAT is a TV show. I am only in the middle of season 3 though. I need to get ON IT.

– August 09, 2013 11:35 AM
Q.

Re: Hillary

Her poll numbers are about twice what they were in 2005. Democratic activists and officeholders are eager for her to run, when they were cool to her eight years ago.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Agreed.  She is in a stronger position today than she was at this time in 2005. 

– August 09, 2013 11:36 AM
Q.

Facebook

Are you on Facebook? Will you let Fix Jr. have a Facebook page?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

http://www.facebook.com/chris.cillizza

– August 09, 2013 11:36 AM
Q.

George W. Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney

If you had to guess at these men's favorite candidates for 2016, who would they be?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

George W. Bush = Jeb Bush

McCain = Christie

Romney = Paul Ryan

– August 09, 2013 11:36 AM
Q.

Martin O'Malley seems like

a great HUD Secretary. Bobby Jindal seems like HHS.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

And both of them just grimaced.

– August 09, 2013 11:37 AM
Q.

Senators to watch

Who are some up and coming Senators who haven't gotten a lot of attention...yet.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Michael Bennet

Tim Scott

Rand Paul. I kid.

– August 09, 2013 11:38 AM
Q.

NYC Politics

Forgetting Senor Danger for a second, how is Mr. Spitzer doing in the polls?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I think he will probably win. Which is amazing.

– August 09, 2013 11:39 AM
Q.

RE: Books

May I suggest to the young lad "The Gosspel According to Fix"
A.
Chris Cillizza :

My gosh yes.

– August 09, 2013 11:39 AM
Q.

HRC

I don't think her losing in 2008 had much to do with people being sick of the Clintons. It was the combination of an extraordinary opponent and an important wedge issue (Iraq) on which she was out of the step with the base. Even given that, she barely lost. As you point out, there is no extraordinary opponent this time. There is also no wedge issue, and being out of government she can take any position she wants going forward.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Totally agree.

Would add that her 2008 campaign was also outmaneuvered in terms of the delegate chase by the Obama team.

– August 09, 2013 11:39 AM
Q.

Ice

No it doesn't affect calorie count of what goes into the cup but it does take up volume that would otherwise be filled with more of the offending beverage. This, in turn, reduces the number of calories that would otherwise be in the drink.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I knew it!  This provides me justification to get ANOTHER iced mocha later. Win.

– August 09, 2013 11:40 AM
Q.

House of Cards

Did you ever see the British original series?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Now it's on the Fix watch list.

– August 09, 2013 11:40 AM
Q.

Establishment

How does McConnell beat the establishment moniker when you have 28.6 years in the Senate, 10+ years in the top two positions in the Senate Republican conference plus 4 years as Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee Chair?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

He can't. He just has to hope he can disqualify Biven and ALG. Which, as his past campaigns has shown, he is quite good at.

– August 09, 2013 11:41 AM
Q.

Secret Ballot

If you took a secret ballot of Republican officeholders (and other big shots), who would be their favorite choice for 2016? Least favorite? (Newt in 2012 clearly was a big "least favorite.")
A.
Chris Cillizza :

In terms of most likeable?

Jeb probably would be at the top. Ted Cruz would be at or near the bottom.

– August 09, 2013 11:42 AM
Q.

TV Shows

Enough of these boring cable and Internet shows... You people have to watch "The Middle" and "Modern Family".
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Also, "Two and a Half Men". Am I right? No?

– August 09, 2013 11:43 AM
Q.

Death of Political Reporting

I have read and re-read your piece on political reporting. I think reporting has been diminished in recent times. Whenever an article comes up, one has to first determine where the reporter is coming from and determining what her or his possible bias is or that of her/his editors. Except for Dan Balz and 95% of the Fix articles of course. I wish editorializing would stay on the editorial pages.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I think there is a BIG difference between reported analysis and editorializing. I try to spend all of my time doing the former.

And, yes, political journalism is absolutely changing. But I don't think it's dying. Just changing.

– August 09, 2013 11:45 AM
Q.

No Amazon Questions Today?

(Instructed not to take Amazon questions--or make any comments?) What are your thoughts? Or do you not have an opinion because that would somehow violate some misplaced oath of loyalty to objectivism?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I've written a ton about it.

Read this: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/08/05/the-washington-post-is-being-sold-to-jeff-bezos-and-we-wont-change-a-thing/

And this: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/08/06/the-future-of-the-washington-post-in-2-tweets/

– August 09, 2013 11:47 AM
Q.

Denny Rehberg

Any chance he pulls a John Thune and wins two years after a loss?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I do not.  I think Republicans want Rep. Steve Daines for that open seat race in Montana. Not Rehberg.

– August 09, 2013 11:48 AM
Q.

Brit HOC is much better

There is still the issue of the female reporter, but it's handled much more creepily (and with the counterbalancing strong character of the wife, which is completely bungled in the American version). That said, my wife is a journalist and is so livid about the female reporter that she will hit (not quite literally, but pretty durn close) anyone who mentions the show in her presence.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Good for her. I think i would feel the same way.

– August 09, 2013 11:48 AM
Q.

RE: Dem primary issue

Social security cuts the biggest....marijuana decriminalization as a dark horse to get someone a second look.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Intriguing.  Of course, Rand would support decriminalization methinks..

– August 09, 2013 11:49 AM
Q.

"Yeah, just put 6 kids in a room and they will write the bill."

Having seen it done many times, it's not that far from the truth! But I agree that HoC is mostly awful.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

"Get some Febreze in there." -- Frank Underwood. 

Gag.

– August 09, 2013 11:50 AM
Q.

The crystal ball

Care to venture a guess how the new highest level management at the WaPo may affect The Fix empire?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Fix empire!

– August 09, 2013 11:50 AM
Q.

Kirsten Gillibrand

Did you see her on the Daily Show last night? Thoughts?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I didn't but am planning to go watch.

I wrote this a few weeks back but let me re-say it: I think Gillibrand has done more for her national prospects than just about any other candidate mentioned for 2016.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/07/19/if-not-hillary-then-who-maybe-another-woman/

– August 09, 2013 11:52 AM
Q.

Christie

How can you rank Christie so high? Rubio seems to be a little hurt by immigration, but Christie's disagreements with the base are far more numerous and his personality does not ingratiate him to voters outside of New Jersey after prolonged exposure. Really, Ted Cruz needs to be higher.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I think people are undervaluing the Christie stock at the moment.

And if Christie and Rubio aren't #1, who is? Rand?  Too many issues with the establishment. I think the next best case would be for Scott Walker...

– August 09, 2013 11:53 AM
Q.

VA governor

Do you have any sense of which way this race is trending at the moment? It seems like they should both be trending down, but in a two-horse race I guess that is impossible.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I don't think people like either of their choices. The SEC investigation into Terry's company is a building problem for him..

– August 09, 2013 11:54 AM
Q.

iced mocha

I think the cold beverage cups are bigger than the hot beverage cups - at Starbucks anyway - so you get the same amount regardless of ice. Sorry. But hey, its Friday so grab another one as a treat!
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I endorse this.

– August 09, 2013 11:54 AM
Q.

Obama Presser

Will Letterman and Fallon be asking the questions?
A.
Chris Cillizza :

I see what you did there.

– August 09, 2013 11:55 AM
Q.

Fix Empire

Hail Caesar! Hail Caesar! Friends, Washingronians, Countrymen, lend me your ears!
A.
Chris Cillizza :

Getting this put on a bumper sticker. Right after I get this on a bumper sticker: "I'm not a businessman I'm a business, man."

– August 09, 2013 11:57 AM
Q.

RE: Scott Walker

No, no, no. He would be a godsend to Dem turnout without Obama on the ticket.
A.
Chris Cillizza :

And maybe a godsend to the GOP for turnout too.

– August 09, 2013 11:57 AM
Q.

Chris Cillizza :

And I am out like realistic dialogue on "House of Cards". 

BOOM.

Remember to watch "In Play" the Post's new daily political show that yours truly and Jackie Kucinich host. It's free: http://www.washingtonpost.com/posttv/c/show/inplay

And we do this every Friday at 11 am. Spread the word.

Q.

 

A.
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