The Fix Live

Aug 16, 2013

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

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Good Friday morning everyone! Let's chat.

Hi Chris -- thanks for taking questions today, and good to see you on MSNBC this morning. As a Minnesotan who is generally happy with our representation in the Senate (Franken and Klobuchar), I have to ask you: what the heck is Sen. Klobuchar doing in Iowa in 2013? Or is she looking even further out to (gulp) 2020? 2024?

I think she is dipping a toe in the event Hillary doesn't run in  2016. If Hillary takes a pass, there will be a relativel small group of women who might be able to makre credible bids for president and Klobuchar is in that group along with Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Elizabeth Warren.

Show horse or work horse when he gets to the Senate?

Tilting towards show horse.

Which of those four Democratic incumbents would you rather be next year?

North Carolina.

Did you watch more of "House of Cards"? Did it get better for you? Did you watch the British original and its sequel?

Watched the 3rd episode where Zoe Barnes sends a bunch of suggestive messages to Frank Underwoood. That's it for me, folks.

Does he run for senate against Markey or governor or neither?

I don't think he runs against Markey. I think it's more likely he runs against Jeanne Shaheen if he runs for Senate.

Governor still makes the most sense since it's a race he has the best chance of winning.

Is she reporting from China now?

She is!  Follow her on Twitter @feliciasonmez.

Now can we please stop talking about him as a serious 2016 candidate?

I think he is a somewhat serious candidate given his demonstrated appeal in Iowa in 2012. But, I agree that with the field that's shaping up, santorum looks to be on the outside looking in at the top tier.

Do you think there is a chance that Noem could change her mind and jump into the Republican Primary for the SD senate seat? It seems like the only person excited about the prospect of a Senator Mike Rounds is, well, Mike Rounds.

Agree that excitement for Rounds isn't super high but I don't think Noem gets back in. She can keep her House seat for as long as she wants while looking for san easy way to get into statewide office as either senator or governor.

Most accurate depiction of a politico on West Wing had to have been Josh Lyman, right? There's some idealism in him but he's ultra-competitive and pragmatic for his boss. Agree or not?


I'm the head of an organization with about 434 other members and I can't control them. More than half are disconnected from reality. They don't listen to me when I have the best interests of the party -- I mean, group -- at heart. And to top it off, my number two, well, he's more than happy to throw me under the bus at a moment's notice. What can I do? Wait, is this Hax's chat?

Man, it is hard to be John Boehner right now. I don't see why he wants the job since he has all the resp0nsibility of leading House Republicans but little of the practical ability to do so.  It's a very tough gig.

If Clinton doesn't run, Gillibrand jumps in the race, right? Cuomo's decision won't matter to her, right?

Not sure. I hear conflicting things.  Remember that Gillibrand worked for Cuomo before and he has served as a sort of political mentor for her.

That said, I think political ambition is a very powerful thing and something that can overcome a lot of friendships.

I think if Hillary doesn't run, there is quite clearly an opening for Gillibrand or someone like her.  I would be hard pressed to see her walking away from that oppportunity.

Your thoughts on Dave Camp not running?

Bad news for Republicans.  Mike Rogers would have been their best nominee.  He isn't running. Camp would have been a solid second choice. Now he is out.

The problen for Republicans is that Michigan is a place where they have an opportunity to grow the playing field and, in so doing, give themselves a bit more margin for error in their efforts to take back Senate control.

At the moment, they don't seem to have found a candidate able to do that.

If Chris Christie were to win the Republican nomination in 2016, which VP pick would put him in the best position to win the general election? For discussion's sake, let's say the Democratic nominee is Hillary Clinton. Your thoughts.

I think the person who makes the most sense under that scenario is Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire.


How successful will his anti-Rand, anti-Cruz, electability argument be?

Not sure yet. I think he is trying to frame 2016 as a choice between someone who can win and someone(s) who can't. 

But, if Rand Paul or Ted Cruz starts to show signs of appeal outside of the typical GOP base -- and Paul, especially, has that capacity -- Christie's "I am the only guy who can win" schtick isn't as powerful.

Forget "HOC." Finish watching "The Wire," OK?

Fix family is alredy taking your advice!

We are mid season 3 of The Wire as we speak. Avon just got out of jail in the last episode we watched.

What are you Binge Watching now?

The Wire. And Broadchurch.

Assuming Rs remain in charge in the House, does Boehnor keep his job in 2015?

Does he even run for it? I have doubts about whether Boehner really wants to lead a GOP conference that has proven over and over again in the past few years that it has almost no interest in being led.

Palin's endorsement of Rand Paul: Who benefits, besides Chris Christie?

I wrote a piece this week on why I thought Christie should come out and knock Palin's comments. I stand by that. It's here:

Please, no. I'm already exhausted by the hypothetical use of New Kids on the Block/New Sheriff in Town headlines.

Oh, Oh hanging tough!

Kristi Noem is already in a statewide office. South Dakota has one House seat.

Good point. Should have said a more high prodile statewide office. Tyhanks for the clarification.

Any chance we see him on the stump for Christie in 3 years? "All I do is win, win, win, no matter what..." playing while CC takes the stake?

That would rule.

Do you think that Eric Cantor could do a better job than John Boehner of leading the Republicans? Cantor seems to possess a strong streak of pragmatism, but I have little idea of his leadership skills.

I genuinely don't think House Republicans can be led by anyone -- not Boehner, not Canter -- in the near term. Too many different agendas, very few of which dovetail nicely.

Has she started workouts for the Field Hockey Team?

The team arrives today. And, yes, the Fix fam is amped up for the season.

May I respectfully recommend the superb original version, starring Ian Richardson as the pluperfect Francis Urquhart?

My plan is to watch this British version at some time in the not too distant future.

What are the latests polls saying for Mitch Defending his Senate Seat.

Wrote a big piece yesterday on how much trouble McConnell is relly in. It's here:

RGIII, the sports media in this town jump down his throat after he says anything...

Truw. Not a great week for RG. But he is still a multimillonaire and the starting QB for the Redskins. So life isn't bad.

Have you seen an Olinguito yet?

No. And it's not for a lack of looking.

Who steps up to be Speaker? Cantor? Ryan? McCarthy? Someone from the Tea Party wing?

My guess is Ryan. It's an educated guess but still a guess.

So happy the Premier League is back tomorrow. And as an Arsenal supporter, if we get Suarez and he scores 30 goals, he can bite **me** if he wants to,

I am thrilled! Mentioned it this morning on Chuck Todd's show!

My Spurs are starting off against new EPL riser Crystal Palace on Sunday.

Why am I attracted to Chris Christie? Or is that a Hax question?

He seems pretty comfortable in his own skin. And that comfort is appealing no matter what party you belong to.

I tought the GOP had the tradition of the "Next Man Up". Reagan followed Ford, HW Bush followed Reagan, Dole followed HW Bush, George W folled Dole, McCain followed W, Romney followed McCain. Shouldn't Santorum follow Romney?

I don't think so. Not in this 2016 field.

Any chance the Fix going to the rodeo at the Missouri state fair?

No, but Phil Rucker went:

Do people actually want to vote for either candidate? At this point I think a potted plant might make a strong showing.

Assume you mean the governor's race, right? And, if so, I think inanimate carbon rod might just get a seruious look from VA voters.

"Olinguito" is Man United's new scrappy Brazilian midfielder.

This is a joke 10 people get. Lucky for me, I am 1 of the 10.

He speaks his mind, suffers no fools, makes sense when he speaks, isn't a hypocrite in what he does, has a self-deprecating sense of humor, and adores The Boss. What's not to like?

Does Jackie's Program count against my "Free 20"? Also, has Jeff Bezos given any indication he's going to take down the Paywall? I miss all of your short, but very informative Fix Bits.

The new show Jackie and I are doing -- it's called "In Play" -- is not governed by the Post paywall at all. You can watch it all for free here:

Do you see him pulling a Corzine? Win the senate race and then run for Governor in 2017 when Christie will be retiring?

Not sure. I do think his natural bent is more toward executive positions so maybe. 

But, I do think Booker has his eye next on national office -- prez or VP. Though I wouldn't presume to know his timing on that.

Who has the edge in this contest? Hanabusa or Schatz?

Schatz by a hair.

How is it that every so often the two parties in Virginia are able to are able to pick the two most disliked people in a state of over 8 million. I have to think turnout is going to be very low in November, which will help Cooch.

I tend to agree that turnout isn't going to set the world on fire and that fact is good for Cuccinelli. I also think we have to wait and see how the whole Greentech Auomotive story plays out for McAuliffe.

Why so much attention for the NYC mayoral race? NYC mayor isn't a feeder for the presidential race and it doesn't tilt the balance of power or make federal policy like a senator/representative. The Acela Corridor may care but doesn't mean the rest of the country does. Oh, and Weiner stories aren't substantive (and he's not going to win anyway), so enlighten me on why the position is worthy of so much attention.

I don't think the amount of Weeiner coverage at this point is warranted given that he seems to have almost no chance of winning. 

But, I do think that mayoral race generally is plenty deserving of attention. It's one of the only competitive race in 2013 and it is a massive city where the mayor matters.

If Christie is seen as the moderate, establishment choice, will conservatives unite behind one candidate to stop him? I think something similar would've happened last cycle had there been better remaining choices than Newt and Santorum. Or will ambition get in the way--i.e., "I'd rather get 15-20% and set myself up for next time"?

I wonder.

Ted Cruz and Rand Paul in the same field helps Christie. And, it's worth remembering that Christie is not a direct parrallel for Rudy Giuliani. He is significantly more conservative on virtually everything that the former mayor of NYC.

I went to the Chelsea vs Real Madrid game in Miami. Huge crowd- a lot of young 20 somethings. Now NBC will broadcast all Premier League games. Seattle has some of the largest crowds in the world. Are we witnessing the much predicted and anticipaed explosion of the game in the US. I know this has nothing to do with politics but I find it facinating.

I sure hope so!

How is he anything more than a right wing Dennis Kucinich?

Because he won Iowa. Dennis Kucinich never came close to winning an early primary or caucus state.

For now, he is running for governor in November. It's a long way to 2016, and he has a positive nationwide image.....for now. But once we begin the analysis of his accomplishments during his tenure as NJ gov, it may be a different story.

I agree that Christie's record -- and even his background before coming into the governor's office -- hasn't been suject to a really deep dive.

That will happen.

And I love the "Deep Space Homer" reference :).


If NYC were its own state it would have about 17 electoral votes (if not more), it is basically like a governors race.

Yup. Good point.

If Boehner calls it quits, any chance Rs can't coalesce around one person? Constitution require a majority to be Speaker, not just a plurality. What's the Vegas line on multiple ballots for Speaker in 2015?

Not sure.

My guess would be that the establoshment would rally behind someone and the tea party wing would rally around someone else.

Paul Ryan could be a sort of consensus candidate. Cantor might be able to bridge that gap too.

What's the latest word on her health?

I haven't heard a word since she was released from the hopsital in late July.

Every 4 years I am watching every match of the World Cup, one of the great sporting events. But the Premier League has no playoffs, so it will never sell here.

But it has relegation!

Man City winning the EPL championship on the last day, almost the last minute, of the season was among the most exciting things I have ever seen in sports.

Just by mentioning it, you have prevented it from happening.

I jinxed it. I knew it!

Is the media going to do the same "really deep dive" into Hillary Clinton's past issues (travelgate, the Rose Law Firm deals & the documents that mysteriously showed up after being declared loss, HillaryCare, Benghazi -- just a few examples) or is that "all in the past"?

You must have missed this story:

To answer the earlier chatter (i.e., who cares?): Aside from the fact that most of the national media are HQed in NYC, which admittedly skews the coverage, approximately 1 in 40 people in the entire country lives in that city (if my rough math is right). At 8.25 million, it's actually more populous than 39 states. And I'll bet that more people could name a current or former NY mayor than could name any NY governor.

Stats, stats and then more stats!

How long can Hillary keep the Democratic field frozen while she considers whether to run? While a formal announcement can wait, I assume at some point she has to take herself out or send a strong signal that she is in. When is that point? The natives (both Democratic activists and all the pols who think they couldn't beat her but would make a great president) are going to get restless.

Sometime in the six month window after the 2014 midterms.  Judging from what she has done in the ast month or two -- appearances, policy speeches etc -- it certainly seems as if it's all system go.

I don't think she has made a final decision yet but she is certainly allowing the speculation machine churn.

If VA was just willing to have GOP primary, the state would go Red easy. However the powers that be decided that I shouldn't have a say in picking a candidate. If they don't want my vote for the primary, than I won't vote for the general election either. This from someone who is registered as a republican.


Do you foresee any impact of the Paul/Establishment divide on the Iowa caucuses? Could an Iowa GOP run by Paul supporters crowd out the typical Iowa social conservative/Republican?

I'm not entirely sure.

I think Paul has a real following in Iowa that he will work like hell to maintain and build on between now and 2016.

Cruz has always struck me as a more socially conservative version of Paul so maybe the Texas Senator tries to occupy that space. Abd then there is Santorum and Rubio, both of whom are likely to try to fill that social conservative space too.

You're lucky you quit House of Cards when you did. It goes downhill from there. I've watched all of it now and feel sick and disappointed in myself, like I ate a whole pan of fudge. Do you see Joe Miller winning the support of the Alaska GOP in his second try for the senate, or is he destined to forever be a living cautionary tale for Tea Party shark-jumpery?

I don't. I think Dan Sullivan, who is in Afghanistan now but is returning soon, is likely to run and likely to win ythe GOP primary. And, if he does that's a major problem for Mark Begich (D).

Scott Brown may be able to win the governorship. But with a veto proof legislature he will have no power. There is a reason 2 republican governors resigned to take ambassadorships in the last 20 years.

Fair enough. But being a governor with no power is better than being a two-time Senate race loser isn't it?

No playoffs in Premier League but Champions League has them.

Which makes it SO amazing.

If there is a tie, both teams lose. If a tourney ends in a tie, no one wins first, same to all. Your welcome.

Thank you! Also get rid of offsides.

NYC mayors and mayoral candidates do become candidates for governor (Koch, M. Cuomo) and president (Lindsay, Giuliani). And they influence the race even if they are not candidates. The NYC mayor is the nation's most visible mayor, automatically involved in every issue related to municipalities and poor people, and cuts a bigger figure on the national stage than, say, the governor of Pennsylvania or Illinois.

The NYC defenders are out in force!

Ok, folks. That's all I have time for. Have a great weekend. Make sure to watch "In Play"! 

And remember to be back here next Friday, same time for another chat!

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 sons.
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