The Fix Live

Mar 10, 2017

The Fix's Chris Cillizza discussed the latest in political news. Join his live chat every Friday at 11 a.m.

Follow @TheFix on Twitter.

Hello everyone!

I have the flu.  It is terrible.

Out of pity, you should subscribe to the Ciquizza on iTunes or Stitcher. It's the least you can do for poor old me.

With that, let's go! 

Your photo is cropped too closely on the top, and it makes you look bald.

Always good to start on a positive note!

It's not accurate to say that Trump had no effect on the most recent jobs data. Didn't he fire the attorney general?

Wow. That is a STEAMING hot take.

What are it's chances of passing the House? What does it look like for the Senate?

The House looks better than the Senate.  In the Senate, you already have 5-6 Senators with a variety of problems with the bill.

The House has some issues but Republicans have a bigger cushion there.

Make sure to bookmark our Whip Count of the legislation for all the latest.

Are you still alive? I am sure the suffering is real.

Right now: Yes.

Last night was an ordeal. I sweated about 8 gallons. Chills. Not good.

And, I am the only sick person to ever be sick.  I feel strongly about this.

I read your article about how we are all becoming conspiracy theorists. And I appreciated it. There are some days, that I start connecting dots that are likely just coincidental (e.g. Wikileaks CIA-hack revelation shortly after Trump accuses a former president of a felony via twitter). BUT. Why is it always Russia? Why is it always multiple Trump-centric people who "forget" these meetings with Russians? And then I remember that it has only been 49 days.....49 days. BTW, loving Ciquizza.

I just think we all distrust people and institutions much more than we once did.

And we tend to think elites run everything and are looking out for themselves at our expense.

Add it up and you get LOTS more conspiracy theorists. Here's the piece I wrote on that. 

Not as many obvious candidates this week since you used JTIII last week... Maybe Kurt Cousins? Asked Danny for a trade and was told don't hold your breath, and lost the team's primary talent evaluator so good luck having a line to protect you or targets to throw to. If Bruce Allen is in charge of talent, history shows you're in trouble. Otherwise, Paul Ryan for trying to manage Trump play Let's Make a Deal with Congress members who don't know what they want.... obvious choice. I mean Michael Flynn but he's out of government now...

Redskins fans, for sure. 

Other ideas?

Midterms are traditionally bad for the President's party. But President Trump's approval rating is not evenly distributed across the country in 2018 territory like WV, ND, IN, MT, etc. And for whatever reason, Democrats don't show up as easily for non-presidential cycles. Will that be enough to offset historic trends?

The map -- particularly on the Senate side -- very clearly favors Republicans.  And that may insulate them somewhat from the typical midterm trends.

In the House, Democrats need a 24 seat gain. I don't think that's likely to happen but it's certainly possible given Trump. (Anything is possible with Trump.)

How does the main stream media counter a large part of the population that believe Trump when he says that the media is the enemy? Especially,when a large media outlet (yes, calling out Fox News) seems to run with that narrative.

Countering is impossible.

If people don't believe the source, then we aren't going to change their minds. We just won't.

For me, I focus on trying to get it right and be as fair as possible. There's not much else I can do.  People will believe what they want -- facts be damned.

Given what the plan looks like, they should just admit their only goal is to repeal it and tell people they are on their own. That is the goal anyway...just say it.

I actually disagree. I think Republicans are keeping a decent chunk of the ACA -- at least the popular parts!

And, yes, they are moving much more toward a market-based approach. But that's the difference between a Republican and a Democratic Administration...

It's my sense that the CBO represents the "gold standard" of cost estimates for legislation. Do you think the Republican denigration of the CBO scoring for the AHCA, even though it's not complete, will become standard operating procedure for Republican favored legislation over the next four years?

Where we are in politics is running down whatever doesn't agree with you.  So, yes.

Do you consume more or fewer oreos on average when you're sick?

I eat like a maniac when I am sick (he says while drinking a venti Mocha.)

My attitude is if I am going to die anyway in the next 24-48 hours, I mind as well live it up.

3 Special House Elections in the next 2 months: #GA06, #KS04, #MT-AL All relatively solid GOP districts (some more than others). What are your thoughts on some close-calls or outright flips? The GOP is pouring money into ads already? Are they worried or simply taking no chances? And which, if any, is the most likely to flip?

GA-06 -- at least on the 2016 presidential numbers -- is more competitive than the other two.

If Democrats manage to win that one, I think talk of a wave building will get much much louder.  

1. When will the first staff shakeup happen? 2. How worried should Priebus be? 3. Who could credibly replace him?

It's impossible to predict anything when it comes to Trump. I would normally say you wouldn't see a staff shakeup inside of the first 6 months of a new administration. But, this guy has been rewriting the rules since he got into politics.

Nothing would shock me at this point.

Please tell me reporters aren't going to let Trump get away with claiming credit for the jobs report after spending years trying to discredit the numbers when Obama was President.

We will note the job growth and provide context. Just like we did with Obama.

This piece does a nice job of that. 

Is it AHCA, TrumpDontCare, RyanCare, "The Greatest Heath Care plan of 2017", or just Stupid?

I think AHCA is what we're going with.

Though I kind of like "The Greatest Health Care Plan of 2017."

Lots of contenders this week --Trump, Ryan, Flynn and the dope at the EPA . Who ya got ?

Redskin fans are leaders in the clubhouse.

What an utter debacle.

Who goes down first jt3 or trump?

John Thompson III won't be fired. Not possible. Unfortunately.

Am I dead yet?


What's better for Dems going into 2018 Mid-terms? ACAH passes and fires up the Dem base or ACAH fails to pass and depresses GOP base?

I *think* the latter.  I think Republicans have spent years promising their base that they would get rid of Obamacare the second they took total control.

Now, they have it.  So if they can't make it happen, I think it would undercut those years of promises as well as the idea that Donald Trump is the greatest deal maker in the world.

Georgetown makes the Final Four? Would that shock you?

Nothing about Trump!

And, you have to make the tournament to be able to get to the Final 4. Which ain't happening.

This extremely personal and certainly a violation of privacy rules, but were you able to get a flu shot this year? Not trying to rub it in if you didn't, but wonder if you did and you found an unexpected strain. Listen to your mom, lots of fluids, PK?

I GOT a flu shot. It's only 50% effective! 2 years ago, it was only 16% effective.


Rex Tillerson? He's still in government, but for all practical purposes he has the power of a junior level staffer, if that. Paul Rino? He finally unveils a healthcare proposal, and proves once and for all to any remaining doubters that the guy has no policy-making skills whatsoever.

Tillerson's decision not to bring any press along with him on a trip to Asia is totally appalling.

...what is the signature Cillizza drink and go-to menu item?

Signature dish: The mortuary burger. It's a regular burger with Tamiflu capsules jammed into it

Signature drink: Cranberry juice

A tablespoon of mayo will knock it right out of you!

I'll die first.

If the repeal plan dies in the Senate what will Trump and Republicans do to ensure ACA doesn't implode? Trump has said he prefers to let it die to blame Dems.

I honestly don't think they know. As in, they're not thinking that far in the future.

If it does go down though and Trump then lets ACA collapse under its own weight, we are going to be in way worse shape than we are right now.

Who actually does the investigating in a congressional investigation? The legwork of finding stuff out?

Like everything on Capitol Hill: Junior staff

The jobs report (which is usually reported by networks_ was much better than expected. Why do you think networks did not report it this time? Do you think they realize that this seems to verify their bias?

Oh come on. I was watching cable when the jobs numbers came out! They were all over the place!

This is the sort of blind partisanship that is so, so destructive for the country. You have every right to have your views. But don't let those views get in the way of indisputable facts!

Do you know the Washington Post employee who got arrested posing as an immigration enforcement agent?

I did not. Crazy story though.

Flu is dreadful. Sympathy. And admiration for carrying on with Chat.

FINALLY someone who understand how tough I am!

McCaul says it's more a "virtual wall", McConnell says Mexico won't pay for it. Any chance Trump backs down?


I think he will build some sort of wall along some part of our southern border and then just declare victory. That's his MO.

Not a fan, but -- I mean...

Top 5 greatest soccer game ever. This is  MUST read -- even if you don't care about soccer.

Who's next? Cuban? Oprah? Will we return to a time of just regular politicians seeking the presidency? Or will mega-celebrity be required from now on?

I think more celebrities will think seriously about running than ever before. And Cuban is, for sure, in that mix.

Whether they run and whether the political climate is right for them to win, I do not know.

Can't be Kirk Cousins. No matter what happens, he can sign a one year contract for 24 million dollars. If he was smart, he could take that money and retire before having any concussions. If he can't live the rest of his life on 24 million dollars, he wouldn't be able to live on 100 million either.

And he made 19 million last year on the tag! He's living his best life.

DeGioia isn't going to fire JTIII, and he's not going to resign. What do we need to do to fix the program, The Fix?

Abandon the Princeton offense. Abandon the idea of Big Man U.  Go small. Press. And recruit like crazy in DC area.

Reminder: The 2 best players on Villanova (Kris Jenkins and Josh Hart) are BOTH DC area kids.

Fans of the Cleveland Browns with getting Brock Oswalt for way too much money.

Disagree! I thought that was a savvy move especially if they can parlay the draft picks they got with him for Jimmy G!

You turned the chat on today! Way to go!

Baby steps.

Is the whole concept on neutral arbiters dead now?

Sadly, yes.

Never thought I would call you an idiot but if you only keep the popular parts, the whole ACA collapses and then the Republicans get their repeal of Obamacare.

Yes, I am aware of that.

"I have done everything I came to do. I resign" - D. Trump

I'd be surprised. Not shocked.

He's the Speaker, but he seems completely lost at sea.

I actually think he had a decent week. He got to give a PowerPoint on the Republican healthcare law that was carried all across cable yesterday!

I think he recognizes the challenges of being Speaker with Donald Trump in the White House and is doing his best to just follow his own muse.

How do you retain your sanity in the changing and turbulent political environment on a day to day basis? Do you have a drink of choice?

Oh, the usual. I bowl. Drive around. The occasional acid flashback.

would portray you in a sketch on the media?

Chris Parnell

People need to step back and examine the deal. Browns essentially bought a 2nd round draft pick, plain and simple. Other teams would do it too if they had the cap space the Browns had.


Chris, who's the frontrunner for the 2020 Democratic nomination at this very moment? Sorry that you're sick.

Your sympathy is MUCH appreciated. Someone wished that I would die today on Twitter. That was a new low!

2020: Corey Booker, Kirstin Gillibrand, Elizabeth Warren, John Hickenlooper.

I was a little surprised the remarkable New Yorker story about Trump doing business with corrupt officials in Baku didn't get more attention. Are there just too many news items to focus on? It feels like every day there are 5 stories that in the past could have dominated the news for days standing alone.

yes. The zone is perennially flooded.

Where are you Posting? Who is the Soundtrack? What are you drinking? And have you slept in the past week?

At a Starbucks in tony McLean VA

Drinking my own misery.

This is the only thing that kept me alive this morning. And, this HAS happened ay my house -- but I was on radio, not TV.

then please get the flu more often.

Damn. Ice cold.  I figured I might have only one more hour to live. So I had better start the chat -- and press the "live" button -- before I expired.

What's his endgame here? Does he want to be the new face of the conservative movement?

He just got reelected.

A Republican president is in the White House so he won't be running for that job anytime soon.

I think he wants to pursue his policy interests and sort of let the chips fall where they may.

Van Jones just went to the US border and said he learned that the way the drug cartels work many times people crossing the border carry drugs with them for the cartels, making it a hard situation for law enforcement. Doesn't everyone learn more when they are go to where the problem is?

Yes. And Van Jones is doing great work.

His op-ed in today's NYT, written by a guy who is running in 2020?

I think he'd like to primary Trump. But not sure that's in the cards. Sitting presidents are very tough to beat.

after two years of constant coverage about HRC's email -0 why havent we seen you write one piece about how the entire trump cabinet was given private non govermental email addresses which is kept on a server at the RNC?

Oh please,

Nothing makes me crazier than the "you gave us Trump" argument based on Hillary's emails.

I didn't set up the private server.

I didn't advise her to be decidedly cryptic about the whole thing.

I didn't tell the FBI to investigate.

Years later, I still bask in the glow of that Frist-Round victory over Duke.

Was CJ McCollum (Now on the Trailblazers) on that team?

What are your thoughts on how the show is shaping up?

Not well. I don't really get the whole Wyatt storyline.

"And, I am the only sick person to ever be sick. I feel strongly about this ".... believe me.

Good point.


Maybe you could write a new diet book. Get the flu, lose 20 pounds in 2 days.

More like "gain 20 pounds in 2 days."

Hero, hoagie, or sub?


I do not believe you're sick, therefore you are not sick and your reporting on being sick fake news.

Failing Chris Cillizza. Sad.

You read this, right? Cause it's amaze-balls:

No. But I will -- if I live that long....

The most recent USA Today/Suffolk poll has the favorability number for Trump at 45 and for Hillary Clinton at 35. What do you make of this?

That people aren't really having second thoughts about picking Trump --despite lots of Democrats insisting they do.

Any pushback if he does this most weeks? Does anyone really care how much it costs on a routine basis?

Average people don't care in the least.

Has to be that Rep from Illinois who doesn't want to give women health insurance to cover pregnancy.

John Shimkus. Woof. 

Chris, Last week you said that the press isn't "surprised" by anything. Weren't they surprised on November 8?

I said I am not surprised by anything that happens with relation to Trump POST Nov. 8.

I've been seeing Adam Schiff* popping up on a lot more TV lately (also on NPR). Although he's only a Congressman, he seems like a highly capable candidate for President. [*Not to be confused with Stephen Hill's DA of the same name on the original "Law & Order."]

He has been very high profile of late and is a talented guy and candidate. But it is VERY hard to go from the House to a presidential bid.

At this moment, do you see Rs having a primary challenge to Trump? and who would lead the charge? Kasich, Sasse, Cruz, Romney? others?

As I noted above, I think Kasich is the one most likely to do it. But I am not sure he actually will run or, if he does, whether he actually has a chance.

Thank you for infecting those people who would get coffee at a Starbucks - Seattle Supersonics Fan

I do what I can.

If you have the flu, you should be home in bed, not out infecting the populus.


for Trump making unsubstantiated claims about Obama wiretapping him? What happened to the civility among Presidents? Made Trump look really trashy.

What would the repercussions be?

Every major media outlet wrote and talked about how there is no evidence to support Trump's claims. But, is he going to be impeached over this? That's up to Congressional Republicans, not me.

Has Trump ever even BEEN to Camp David?

He has not. And I don't believe he is planning to go.  Western Maryland doesn't really feel like a terribly Trumpian vacation spot.

He doesn't believe you have the flu.


Does California have a Senate seat open up in 2018 for which Adam Schiff could run?

DiFi is up in 2018 and is rumored to be a retirement. So, maybe....

Kurt Cousins has a bright post-football future as a preacher, should he decide to pursue that as a career. He's a preacher's kid, handsome, articulate, intelligent, and definitely not a pansy. He has tremendous potential to be a star on the national level. He could also go into politics with his background of successful sports career and squeaky clean life. Ya think?

Well, assuming he plays into his mid to late 30s, he will have plenty of time to pursue a second career!

Chris, I channel surf and try to keep an open mind. What I see is that it appears that journalists at each network get talking points because they act as if they bring up any pro Trump news they will be seen by their colleagues as the football player who runs toward the wrong goal post. That's what I see. Is this bias?

I think Twitter is becoming remarkably intolerant and heavily liberal. As in, anything that is perceived as being "pro Trump" is scolded and mocked.

I haven't seen the same in TV.

Twitter, in my mind, is borderline unusable at this point.

The end.  That's it for the chat this week. Make sure to spread the word that we do this every Friday at 11 am -- assuming I live that long!

And make sure to subscribe to the Ciquizza -- on iTunes or Stitcher

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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