The Fix Live

Aug 17, 2012

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

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Good morning everyone!

Let's chat!

Love your chats: It seems that whenver there is a heated exchange between the Repubs and the Dems on a given topic, the press feels they always must say that both parties are responsible, Usualy one person from a party starts it with a bad statement be it, Biden or Romney etc. It's like if someone punched you in the nose and you hit back and then a fight began are both prarties responsible? Why can't the press say who instigated the dispute?

First rule of getting your question answered in the Fix chat: Praise the Fix chat.

So, well done.

I know there is a greater desire than ever for fact checking the claims being made by both parties. 

I also know that it is getting harder and harder to get to the root fact and decide who is right and who is wrong. I know partisans do it all the time but as an objerctive reporter I can tell you that I struggle daily with trying to litigate these things out.

I just don't see where Ryan helps at all. He might bring the base around, but the base hates Obama so much, they would have voted for anybody who's not Obama. You mentioned that Ryan might help in Iowa, but in the immediate aftermath of the pick, Chuck Todd noted that almost 15% of Iowa's population are seniors, and he even went so far as to say Ryan's Medicare stance will take Iowa out of play for Romney. I'm inclined to go with Chuck, but is there any reason you can think (other than the Midwestern thing) why Ryan helps in the Hawkeye State?

You are assuming the pick was made because of the map...which I am not sure it was.

I do think Ryan helps marginally in Wisconsin and hurts marginally in Florida. Beyond that, I don;t see Ryan as VP having much electoral effect.

Remember that history has almost no examples of the VP pick turning the race or even that large an influence on the outcome.

Can you explain what he's doing. Other than being angry, etc. for not getting the nomination for gov., why has he done such a political 180? Zell Miller I got, but Davis was an impressive, engaging, up and comer (at least that's how he came across). What happened?

I genuinely do not know.

I think Davis took his loss in the 2010 Alabama Dem primary REALLY hard and it embittered him to his own party. But even I wouldn't have predicted something like this happening,

I am a bit befuddled.

Always good for the guy with the reputation to change things because he has no use a prop that quickly and easily erases. Fail. The only silver lining is that this is pre-Labor Day or else it would become a meme.

I did think it was sort of funny that Romney wound up erasing the numbers with his hand.  .gif of that coming in 3,2,1.....

People who think he'll be replaced know nothing about politics. Dropping a veep, for the most part, is like something from the 19th century, not a modern move. You know what also was big then? Brokered conventions, and those don't happen either. Stop the madness.


Just never going to happen.  Not even considered. And yet it's a rumor every four years!

Would you ever admit you're wrong or just dig in and say your opinion caused a lot of hysterical reactions from a passionate, polarized electorate? You're on an island about Romney's statement about taxes. More conclusory posts like that might draw clicks and comments but really turn off people who look for more.

I am regularly wrong. (Just ask Mrs. Fix).

And I always do my best to not only acknowledge when I have made a mistake but acknowledge more broadly that my opinions and analyses are those of a single person who does his best but can miss the mark.

That said, I stand by what I wrote yesterday. While Romney didn't put the taxes issue to bed, he certainly made it much harder for Harry Reid to continue to assert he didn't pay any taxes, right?

Very pro-Republican. Will that be buried in some or all stories after Ryan gets rousing applause and the press writes about how Ryan neutralized the Medicare issue?

I hosted Chuck Todd's show this morning and mentioned it each time I mentioned The Villages. As did NBC's Ron Mott who is traveling with Ryan.

So I guess DR this Friday morning doesn't stand for Diane Rehm but for Daily Rundown. Nice job pinch-hitting! Don't you just love live TV and teleprompters? :)

 Thanks! Did what I always do --my best.

Spinning Boris. Ever seen it? It's based on consultants hired by Yeltsin.

This interests me.

Hi Chris, I circled Wednesday just like you said and I didn't see any announcement from Mitt regarding his VP choice. Did you mean to look for it this coming Wednesday?


A perfect example of me being wrong!  I was genuinely surprised that Romney went so early with his pick; I believe it was the second earliuest VP pick in modern presidential history.

Maybe they did that because they knew they would be litigating the Medicare thing at the start of the rollout and wanted to give themselves enough time to do that before their convention.

True or false, in your opinion, the Obama campaign knew and approved of Reid's comments on Romney's tax rate before he made them?

False.  I have no reason to believe they did.

How's this work? Will it replace our normal chat?

No way!

Just hang on after this chat and send your question to #fixhangout. Then follow this link:

Is there any amount of money in the world that could get Chuck Todd to shave that goatee?

Not possible. It's his thing!

Man, how did the founder of the Reform Party get the Reform Party nomination?

It's a wonder isn;t it?

Why wouldn't you mention Romney lying about the contents of his tax returns when he ran for governor in 2002 when saying, "Oh, he said he paid no less than 13%" like it must be true?

Do you genuinely believe a candidate for president would purposely lie to a wide group of reporters? I doubt it. But maybe I am naive.

Why did the Romney campaign announce the Ryan pick on a Saturday morning during a weekend dominated by the Olympics? Seems like an odd public-relations pick, and may explain why polls show Ryan making less of a "splash" than previous VPs.

I think it's because they wanted time to litigate Medicare before the GOP convention.

But they haven't explained the earlyness of it to me.

During the last week I got two polling calls in the evening on different evenings from the same polling firm. I do not know the name of the firm, but every question was the same and I know it was the same poll. This makes me question the validity of polls. It did not seem to be a push-poll.

You must live in a swing state.

This seems like one of the few things that could affect undecideds. Dems already dislike Ryan, Republicans would either disbelieve it or excuse it, but swing voters could see this as a black mark on Ryan's trustworthiness and leadership (blaming a staffer). Seems like a no-brainer rejoinder for Biden in the VP debate.

Or do they see it as Ryan being willing to tackle the big intractable issues that politicians typivcally skirt?

Not saying I agree with either contention. Just playing devil's advocate.

Remember that most voters still have little idea who Paul Ryan is. It's going to be a few weeks before we know how his selection has played -- especially since announcing a VP pick usually gives presidential candidates a bit of a "bounce" that quickly dissipates.

A VERY good point.  I think we need to wait until both parties conventions are over until we have even an initial ruling on Ryan.

Not surprising that he would help Romney a *little* bit in Wisconsin: 1. For a young guy, he's been in Congress for a pretty long time: 13 years. His district falls into both the Milwaukee and Madison TV markets -- between them, about 50% of the state's voters. So a familiar face to a lot of folks. 2. He's been a strong vote-getter in a competitive congressional district. People who know him seem to like him. 3. I suspect most of the coverage in Wisconsin of his selection has been positive of the "home-town boy makes good" sort. That, said, Ryan is *not* a statewide elected official, so I imagine many folks in Eau Claire or Wausau have no idea who he is. I also suspect most of this "bounce" will dissipate over time.

It absolutely could. I do think people find the idea of a "home state boy" making good generally appealing. But do tend to think that most people don't vote for VP...they vote for president.

Not even close. People who are into politics really have no excuse to make this claim. Folks need to read about elections from the early 19th century.

Agree 100%. Would agree more if I could.

Maddow has mentioned multiple times Romney saying he had filed as a Massachusetts resident in 2002 when he didn't.

Maybe it's me but I think there is a difference between that sort of omission and what would amout to an outright, researched lie if Romney didn't oay 13% taxes.

Not rememebering or misremembering is one thing.  Saying you went back and did some research and then still not telling the truth is another.

What do you call a Politician who uses commercials with exaggerations and smears against his opponent? . . . . Elected.


And true.

Good, because you are right. The people who holler about how you never admit that you're wrong automatically show their bias.

Thanks, Mom.

Pumpkin spice latte season. Oh, and football. And the elections.

Field Hockey season starts tomorrow at Catholic U. Hard to describe my level of excitement.

During the Olympics, I watched field hockey. Is the Olympic Version more or less the same as the NCAA version? Interesting game. Had to love the blue field.

Yes. VERY similar. But we don't play on blue turf :)

on how long it takes enterprising social media types on Romney/Ryan team to gives us "Hot Ryan and Romney" takeoff on Hot Cheetos and Takis? Or is that just stepping into swagger-jacking minefield that they don't need?


CC: "That said, I stand by what I wrote yesterday. While Romney didn't put the taxes issue to bed, he certainly made it much harder for Harry Reid to continue to assert he didn't pay any taxes, right?" No, it doesn't. Reid's basically calling Romney a liar anyway. Making an assertion without offering any proof does not change the equation.

Fair enough.

Who do you think has an upper hand in the debates - Ryan or Biden?

Biden has been there and done that before. But Ryan has done well for himself in his first 6 days on the trail.

My earlier comment about duplicate calls, that happened in Frank Wolfe's district of Virginia.

Yup. Virginia.

Are you grateful Linda McMahon won the GOP primary in CT, and will this chat return to wrestling questions as well?

Twist my arm and put me in a fingure gour leglock why don't you?

I keep toggling the blue/red/toss-up thingy and first of all, this is great; I feel like Wolf Blitzer, and second, I still cant find a clear path for Romney to win. It's not that he can't. It's just that it's really difficult without winning either PA or FL and neither of those look like an easy win.

We all want to be Wolf.

And, while I do think there are paths to Romney winning 270 electoral votes, they aren't nearly as plentiful as the paths to Obama getting to that number.

Doesn't mean Romney can't or won't win. Just that it's not an easy path for him in terms of electoral votes.

Maybe it wouldn't be such a struggle if you didn't try to litigate. Just whom do you plan to sue? Or did you mean something like "sort out"? Please put that thesaurus away until you learn to use it properly. And congratulations on the newest Fix.

Grammar/language police!  And thank you.

Is Alex Castellanos a rising star on twitter? Seems to have the wit to get it done.

I like Alex on twitter a lot.

My new favorite (by far) is Mark Leibovich at the New York Times. He tweets @markleibovich and literally makes me laugh out loud with each tweet.

Romney's residency was part of a lawsuit. He couldn't have run if he hadn't been a MA resident. He told people he had filed as a resident there but wouldn't show his taxes. He later amended it, meaning he had not been a resident when he was telling people to take his word for it. Hard to see how that's not relevant.


I'm surprised no one in the media hasn't questioned Ryan or one of his high school peers as to why he was voted the biggest brown-noser in his class?

It's been mentioned a TON. Not as much as him and p90X but still alot.

Also, The Fix was voted best dressed in 8th grade. BOOM.

Is there anyway Linda McMahon can stun her way into the Senate with her Pedigree? Or is it Rock Bottom for her?

I think she has something hgher than "no chance in hell". But not that much higher.

So what was the deal on the opening of the Daily Rundown? Was the teleprompter not scrolling, or was it putting out Text for Chris Jansen's Show?

Prompter went down! Welcome to live TV. I did my best. Thanks for watching. Chuck does a great show.

He now is playing at Old Trafford. Looks like Manchester United is the favorites in the EPL


Their forwards are now Rooney, Chicharito, RVP and Welbeck.

Pretty damn good.

My center and right-of-center conservative friends are positively giddy about Paul Ryan, but how does this help Romney win the election since he pretty much had that demographic anyway?

I am starting to think that the Romney team believes this election will be a battle of the bases akin to 2004 and that by pikcing Ryan they ensure that there base is totally fired up.

The question is whether Ryan can have any appeal at all to independents -- most don't know him right now -- or whether Democrats will succeed in casting his Medicare plan as outside the mainstream of political thought.

Any chance The Cillizza starts using P90X to get buff

Have done a few workout and own the DVDs.

Here's something I didn't realize: it's incredibly difficult.

And today? Best Dressed in Post Newsroom?

No way. Jonathan Capehart works in this newsroom. That guy trumps me every day!

From a reporting stand point, how thrilling is the (extremely unlikely) prospect of an electoral tie?


If you want some hilarious tweets. Follow the Iron Sheik, its an absolute riot

Yes, yes it is.

And I still remember the Camel Clutch. That looked like it hurt.

Chris: I've got a great drinking game going with my buds here. It's a shot whenever you use the word "litigate". Could you please liberally (I'm such a card) sprinkle this in some more, I hate sobriety. Thanks much.

Let me litigate this question.

Didn't realize you're a footie fan. What club do you support mate? I'm for The Arsenal.

Tottenham. COYS!

My sources are telling me that Catholic doesn't stand a chance against Drew in field hockey this year.

HMMM. That's a single source of course...

I would think that she had a better chance in 2010 against the flawed Richard Blumenthal and in an excellent GOP year. Does Chris Murphy have any potential vulnerabilities?

Sure. He's been a member of Congress and a congressional staffer -- neither of which are great in an electorate that rewards outsiders.

But Murphy has proven to be a very good candidate. I remember a time when that Democratic primary race was supposed to be competitive...

What was the main difference between Paul Ryan and The Cillizza in the College Years?


Any shockers in the results from this past Tuesday?

Ted Yoho!

Yoho, a veternarian, beat Rep. Cliff Stearns in a Florida Republican primary.

When making one of your appearance on Hardball, will you use a wrestling reference to describe the Linda McMahon race?

Um, yes.

Any races jump out as now in play because of Ryan's potential to make Medicare a huge issue in November?

Are you taking the Fix Crew on the road to both conventions?

We will have at least one member of the posse with me at both conventions. I like to roll deep.

With a toddler and a new baby in the house? The Cilliza is lucky if he gets enough sleep to show up here.

Truer words have never been spoken.

As a single baby-boomer with a very modest salary, I pay 28 percent in income taxes. Romney's "contribution" just makes me mad.

Absolutely a good point.  I am not saying that Romney's tax returns aren't still fair game. I am only saying that accusing him of not paying any taxes at all seems like an unwinnable argument for Democrats in light of what he said yesterday.

Which ticket had the best hair: Kerry-Edwards in '04, or Romney-Ryan in '12?

OOOOH. Tough one.

I say Romney-Ryan. But that may just be recency bias talking.

Ok, I've got to cut out a little early from the chat...we are doing a Google hangout to talk about Paul Ryan's 1st week on the VP trail...send question on Twitter to #fixhangout and go to this link to watch the conversation live at NOON: Link

Have a great weekend.


In This Chat
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 son.
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