EARLIER ON THE FIX:
WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE MISSED:
* Chuck Hagel was confirmed as defense secretary Tuesday afternoon on a largely party line vote. Hagel was cleared by the full Senate by a 58-41 margin. Four Republicans crossed over to vote with Democrats: Sens. Thad Cochran (Miss.), Mike Johanns (Neb.), Richard C. Shelby (Ala.) and, most notably, Rand Paul (Ky.). Paul supported Hagel on the final vote despite his disagreements with him because he believes the president is entitled some leeway on his political appointments, according to his spokeswoman.
* New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) announced that his state will extend Medicaid coverage to about 300,000 uninsured residents. It’s a striking move from a governor who has not been shy about his opposition to President Obama’s health care law, which includes Medicaid expansion. Republican governors have been split over whether to endorse Medicaid expansion.
* Who is sitting on their behinds? That seemed to be the question of the day up on Capitol Hill. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said it was time for the Senate to “get off their ass” and take action to avert the sequester. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) responded: “I think he should understand who is sitting on their posterior. We’re doing our best here to pass something. The speaker’s doing nothing to try to pass anything over there.”
* A super PAC opposing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has come under criticism from Republicans for tweets that referenced McConnell’s wife and suggested he may be gay. “This woman has the ear of @McConnellPress — she’s his #wife. May explain why your job moved to #China! http://rense.com/general77/racist.htm” read a Feb. 14 tweet. McConnell’s wife is former labor secretary Elaine Chao, who is of Chinese descent and was born in Taiwan. The group also re-tweeted someone’s suggestion that McConnell made Chao’s father rich and gave her citizenship. In addition, it deleted tweets suggesting McConnell may be gay.
* Republican Teddy Turner’s latest TV ad encourages voters to “break up with career politicians” and support him in South Carolina’s 1st District special election. Part of ad — which has $60,000 behind it — seems to evoke former governor Mark Sanford (R), who asks voters for a second chance in his first ad. But Turner’s spokesman denies that the ad is meant to remind voters about former governor’s extramarital affair. Sanford, meanwhile, released a new ad pitching himself as a strict fiscal conservative.
WHAT YOU SHOULDN’T MISS:
* Obama’s gray hairs are not from his job, but rather, from a different source, quipped First Lady Michelle Obama in an interview. “People think the gray is from his job. It’s from his children,” she said.
* As of early this afternoon, turnout was estimated to be about 11 percent among sampled Chicago precincts in Illinois’ 2nd District special election primary. Stay tuned to Post Politics later tonight for results. Polls close at 8 p.m. ET.
* The president visited a nuclear submarine factory in Virginia on Tuesday to warn that allowing the sequester take effect will have severe consequences.
* Former National Republican Congressional Committee political director Mike Shields will become the next Republican National Committee chief of staff.
THE FIX MIX:
Argo + Home Alone = Genius.
With Aaron Blake