We’re talking a whole lot less about the Republican primaries than we were a week or two ago, which my former colleague Chris Cillizza attributes to the endorsements of Mitt Romney by Marco Rubio and others, which Chris suggests have effectively ended the GOP race: In just the last 9 days — since Romney won the Illinois primary — he has been endorsed by former Florida governor Jeb Bush and former President George H.W.
Is there good political news for President Obama in the unemployment numbers? The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza thinks so. Citing an analysis from Republican strategist Matt McDonald, he notes that the unemployment rate in only four swing states was higher than the national average. The four states are hardly inconsequential: They are Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, and Nevada. And they account for 66 electoral votes.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee emails this: From: Ryan RudominerSent: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 1:17 PMSubject: Winners and Losers from the Mass. Senate special - Washington Post's Chris Cillizza From: Chris Cillizza To: Chris Cillizza Sent: Wed Jan 20 13:08:51 2010 Subject: Winners and Losers from the Mass. Senate special Winner. Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee: In light of the Massachusetts loss, the DCCC's record of five straight special election wins -- including one last fall in a difficult environment in Upstate New York -- looks a lot more impressive.
Seems like the conventional wisdom in Washington right now is that there's no way the Senate passes a climate bill in 2010—especially after that long, gory health care battle we just saw. Here's The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza: "No matter what Obama and his advisers said… there is now no chance that the Administration's climate-change proposal will come up for a vote in the Senate prior to the 2010 election.
Speculation as to who will succeed Ted Kennedy is proceeding apace, with his nephew, former Congressman Joseph Kennedy II, the likely frontrunner in the January 19 special election. The eldest son of Robert Kennedy, Joe held the House seat once occupied by his uncle John and House Speaker Tip O’Neill, representing Boston from 1987 until 1999. If he does run, Kennedy would start with a financial disadvantage.
Salt Lake City, Utah Jon Huntsman Jr. wants to know if I'm in the mood for Mexican food for lunch. "I know a great place we can go downtown," the Utah governor says as we pile into the back seat of his black, tinted Suburban. (He goes there all the time, three of his aides separately assure me.) We drive south from Capitol Hill, passing the enormous Mormon temple in the center of town.
Tough to say, but this might be a sign the administration expects it to. According to Chris Cillizza, the much-respected Stephanie Cutter, currently Tim Geithner's top communications aide, is moving from Treasury to the White House to help oversee the as-yet unnamed nominee's confirmation. Per Cillizza: Cutter will serve as an adviser to the president, helping to coordinate the Supreme Court nomination process -- a role similar to what Steve Schmidt played during the confirmations of Justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito.
With the Republicans’ presidential hopes for 2008 now all but dashed, a few upstarts in the party are—surprise—positioning themselves for future runs. Last week, Chris Cillizza flagged the appearance of Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal in a television spot for John Kennedy, the Republican challenger to Senator Mary Landrieu. Amid a backdrop of stately white columns, the young Indian-American governor projects a cool image of steadiness and calm. Sound like anyone you know?
On the WaPo politics blog, Chris Cillizza is asking whether Huckabee is the Democrats' worst nightmare: What if he can tie up the socially conservative, evangelical base while still appealing to independents with his authenticity and his economic populism? In Cillizza's estimation, "[t]here are clearly lines of attack available to Democrats if Huckabee becomes the nominee. But the current trepidation about that prospect speaks to just how much of an unknown variable Huckabee represents in the presidential race." That's right, Democrats are scared of what they don't know.
Primetime: [Katharine Q. Seelye, The New York Times]: “CNN’s Republican YouTube debate last night attracted 4.4 million viewers, making it the most-watched debate of this presidential primary season and breaking all records for any primary debate on cable television in cable history.” Red Credentials: [Chris Cillizza, The Washington Post]: “Long courted by Romney, [American Conservative Union President David] Keene agreed to formalize his endorsement of the former governor during a face to face meeting in Florida on Tuesday, according to knowledgeable sources.