The Live Fix with Chris Cillizza

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Chris Cillizza
Wednesday, September 8, 2010; 11:00 AM

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Chris Cillizza: Good morning everyone. Sorry for the lateness...had to get my campfire mocha at Caribou!

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Farewell to Hizzoner: So if Rahm Emmanuel runs for mayor of Chicago, who is likely to fill his position at the White House?

Chris Cillizza: Good question. matter is that no one really knows much of anything.The name I think is most intriguing is Ron Klain. Klain wasn't one of the first 20 people to work for the Obama campaign but was intimately involved in the general election -- particularly in debate prep.He currently serves as chief of staff to Joe Biden.

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Rahm Replacement: Could Tom Daschle be the frontrunner for Rahm's replacement? I have read in numerous books that it was between Rahm and Tom, so would Daschle be a frontrunner?

Chris Cillizza: Daschle is another obvious choice and would clearly be quite good.The one danger: Remember that Daschle's bid to be Secretary of Health and Human Services was derailed after controvery arose over his taxes and his work as a quasi-lobbyist.While chief of staff is not an appointed position -- like a Cabinet Secretary -- the White House will be very conscious of what the pick says about the president.

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Hair of steel in the Windy City: Not only will Blagojevich run for Chicago mayor, Blagojevich will win.

Chris Cillizza: I had to mention this one for the headline alone."Hair today, gone tomorrow: Blago gets in (and out) of mayor's race"Also, if Rahm does run there are any number of awesome headlines."Rahm-go!""Ready to Rahm""Rahm-ination?"

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David Gergen: Any chance David Gergen would do it or Obama would want him? for COS

Chris Cillizza: No and no.

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Murkowski has game?: How exactly is Lisa Murkowski "still in the game"? I thought the Libertarians already rejected the option of running her as their nominee.

Chris Cillizza: Well, the Libertarian party is apparently reconsidering...she met with the head of the party yesterday.I am still skeptical that Murkowski gets back in -- as a Libertarian or a write-in. And, even if she does, I don't see how she is anything more than a spoiler...the pull of the two major parties is significant and hard to overcome.Of course, a candidacy by Murkowski would theoretically give Democrats a chance for a totally unforeseen pickup opportunity.

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Rahm: Let's Get Ready to Rahm-ble!

Chris Cillizza: YES! U-S-A! U-S-A!

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Chicago Mayor: I heard Chuck Todd say that Rahm has only a week or 2 to decide. Will he do it?

Chris Cillizza: Well, Rahm probably has to signal internally that he is either going to do it or not within a week or two because he can't announce publicly he is running until they have picked his replacement.The filing deadline for the mayor's race is Nov. 20 with the primary set for Feb 22.

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Polls: Is the Fix on the cutting edge of the broad tightening of polls we're starting to see and will likely see through the fall? Or, are you running with the pack?In light of your 180 degree react to the last two gallup generics I'd have to peg you a pack guy. Amirite?

Chris Cillizza: I am continually amazed by peoples' willingness to sniff out partisanship where there is none.Sorry to disappoint the conspiracy theorists out there but I am presently working on a post seeking to explain the radical jumps in the Gallup generic ballot.Why didn't I write something already? I wanted to do some reporting and offer some genuine insight from D and R pollsters.Novel concept.

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A Moment of Appreciation: For Richie Daley, just a humble public servant, the son of a humble public servant, who longs only to go quietly into the sunset and live on a humble pension...

Chris Cillizza: SO. GOOD.If you haven't read the New Yorker profile from 6 months or so ago on the Mayor for Life, you MUST do it immediately.Just a fascinating picture of a place where old school machine politics still works. There aren't many of them left in the country.

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Linda Mcmahon: How soon till The Rock starts cutting promos for Linda McMahon?

Chris Cillizza: Jabroni,I have no idea when The Rock will cut promos for Linda McMahon. What do you think? IT DOESN'T MATTER WHAT YOU THINK.Do you smelllllllllll what the Rock is cooking?And, yes, I have watched WAY to much pro wrestling in my time.

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Million Dollar Man: Was Ted Dibiase the most underrated wrestler of all time?

Chris Cillizza: What about his sidekick Virgil!

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Alaska: What's the deal? Is every loser now going to go independent or libertarian? is this a new trend?

Chris Cillizza: I think the tendency when an incumbent loses unexpectedly is that his/her supporters immediately say that it's not over -- that there are still lots and lots of people who support them.Which is, of course, both true and meaningless. Lots of people did vote for Murkowski; more people voted for Joe Miller.My guess is that Murkowski is talked out of running a third party bid this fall by establishment types who note that she could have a shpt at Sen. Mark Begich (D) in 2014.

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What If?: If the Nov elections result in Democrats retaining control of both the House and Senate, what will political pollsters, pundits and analyst who are predicting huge Republican gains say?

Chris Cillizza: Not much.In defense of the political chattering class, even the most optimistic Democratic strategists arebn't predicting a good election for their party. How large those losses will be is what will be decided in the next two months.

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Washington, DC: So explain to me how the timing of Daley's announcement favors Rahm. Most people in Washington believe that Rahm is a clear favorite for Mayor of Chicago, but Daley's timing confuses me. It is the most important news except for the huge gap that the Republicans have opened in the mid-term election cycle. If Rahm announces that he's leaving today, doesn't it look like he is the one responsible for the mess?

Chris Cillizza: I don't think Daley's prime concern was Rahm's timetable.I think that no one -- including Rahm -- expected Daley to retire and in his decision to step aside he created a gold opportunity for Rahm to get back into the elected side of politics in a dream job for him no less.I don't think Rahm says anything this week since it would almost certainly step on the White House's economic message.But, by next week I think we will have a very good sense of what his plans are. And, everyone I talk to seems to think him running is close to a done deal.

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Is the wave getting bigger?: Pundits frequently describe the upcoming mid-terms as a wave election in which large numbers of Republican candidates (gains of roughly 40 House/7-9 Senate) will win positions across the board. Barring the unforeseen over the next fifty odd days, do you see those estimates remaining about where they are right now or do you think electoral discontent will build on itself and propel more Rs into office?

Chris Cillizza: Fundamental question: will House races be a national referendum or a series of local choices?In the former scenario, Republicans could make huge gains; in the latter, Democrats can hold the House.I just wrote a post on this.

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Three Way on DE: 1. If O'Donnell wins the primary, is there any way for her to win the general election?2. How long can Castle serve in the Senate? He's already 71 years old.3. How seriously is Castle taking this challenge?

Chris Cillizza: 1. Sure. Though Republicans chances of winning are significantly less with O'Donnell as the nominee than Castle. The Senate is not exactly filled with spring chickens.3) Very seriously now. The Murkowski loss woke him up. He is now on TV and radio bashing O'Donnell.

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Would the Rock cut ads for McMahon?: Coming from a long line of pro wrestlers, I can't imagine he was too happy with all the things the McMahons did in the last couple decades to the business. And he did leave, for all intents and purposes.

Chris Cillizza: I don't think he would.But, it was too ripe an opportunity to use the word "jabroni" in a chat.

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RE: Alaska: So you feel Murkowski would rather go after the Democrat in 2014 rather than stand up to the Palin Machine in 2010?

Chris Cillizza: It's not an issue of stabnding up to the Palin machine. Running as a third party candidate GREATLY reduces your chances of winning.

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O'Donnell and Parker? : Hi Chris, I have a question. I thought that the new MSNBC show at night was going to feature both Lawrence O'Donnell and Kathleen Parker, however the advertisements for the show only say that O'Donnell is hosting it. Did she get dropped, or is MSNBC downplaying her participation so they don't alienate their libeal viewers, of which I am one. I hope she is still involved since I love her columns, though I don't always agree. Any inside info? Thanks!

Chris Cillizza: Um, I think you are confusing the O'Donnell show (Lawrence not Christine) on MSNBC with the Kathleen Parker and Elliot Spitzer show -- Parker Spitzer -- on CNN.Neither of which should be confused with the ESPN "30 for 30" movie: "Riding the Pine: Chris Cillizza and the Xavier high school basketball team".

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Florida governor: I may be slow-witted, esp. in Math. In your fine report on redistricting yesterday you said the new FL governor could control possibly 7 or 8 Congressional seats. If the new census allows that state just one new seat, how would the gov control that many? What am I missing? Thanks.

Chris Cillizza: I was told there would be no math.So, the state will gain one new seat but the lines will be redrawn in all 25 other districts too. And, even a slight tweak in some of these districts -- taking a big city out or putting one in -- can drastically alter the partisan makeup of the seat.That's how you get to the 7-8 number.If you haven't read it, make sure to check out Deputy Fix Aaron Blake's post on all this stuff from yesterday. Good stuff.

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Friday Night Lights Finale: Did I miss this discussion? Honestly, how AMAZING was that game? I was clapping on my couch like I was in the stands. Loved the "hero" of the game!But when they played Steve Earle during the closing...c'mon, did you tear up? No wonder the show is a Fix favorite!

Chris Cillizza: The Steve Earle thing put me over the top.I have said it before and will say it again: I will NEVER forgive the American public for not embracing "FNL" more. You will miss it when it is gone.

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Chris Cillizza: Have to run to finish up the much awaited Gallup generic ballot piece...don't forget that I will be back on Friday for the full hour "Live Fix" chat!


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