Make sure to sign up to receive “Afternoon Fix” every day in your e-mail inbox by 5(ish) p.m.!
EARLIER ON THE FIX:
WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:
* Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) will seek reelection as Senate Republican conference chairman, meaning that Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) is in a solid position to replace retiring Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) as minority Whip in the upper chamber. Cornyn currently heads the National Republican Senatorial Committee. Republicans are coming off a tough cycle in which Senate Democrats padded their Senate majority, prompting chatter that Cornyn might have endangered his status as the frontrunner for the whip position.
* Neither Mitt Romney nor President Obama has officially won Florida's 29 electoral votes yet, but an adviser to Romney believes Obama will carry the state. "The numbers in Florida show this was winnable," said Romney Florida adviser Brett Doster. "We thought based on our polling and range of organization that we had done what we needed to win. Obviously, we didn't, and for that I, and every other operative in Florida has a sick feeling that we left something on the table. I can assure you this won't happen again."
* Former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe has begun informing Democrats of his intention of run for governor of Virginia in 2013. The big question now is whether Sen. Mark Warner (D) will run. If he does, he'd be the immediate Democratic frontrunner.
* A federal judge sentenced Jared Lee Loughner to life in prison without the possibility of parole for a 2011 shooting rampage that killed six people and nearly took the life of former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. Giffords's husband Mark Kelly spoke at the sentencing proceedings, saying at the end of his remarks: "After this moment. Here and now. Gabby and I are done thinking about you." Giffords also attended the proceedings but did not speak.
WHAT YOU SHOULDN'T MISS:
* Think a single vote can't matter? Ask Robert McDonald, a Walton, Ky. City Council candidate who finished tied at 669 votes with his opponent. McDonald's wife, who's been working extra hours as a patient care assistant, did not cast a ballot in the election. The county clerk says a coin flip could resolve the tie.
* Obama's campaign "succeeded by suppressing the vote,” Republican strategist Karl Rove said in an interview. “They effectively denigrated Mitt Romney’s character, business acumen, experience.”
* Let the 2016 chatter commence: Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) is headed to Iowa next week to speak at a birthday fundraiser for Gov. Terry Branstad (R).
* Former Ohio governor Ted Strickland (D) isn't closing the door on a rematch against the man who unseated him in 2010, current Buckeye State Gov. John Kasich (R). "Am I going to be the candidate to run against him? I’m certainly not prepared to say that. But I will be fully participating in efforts to get a Democrat in the governor’s office. I think there’s some strong possibilities other than myself that could do that. I haven’t closed any doors, but I haven’t made any specific plans either," Strickland said in an interview.
THE FIX MIX:
The 2012 debates: A bad lip reading.
With Aaron Blake