The Buzz

TheChat: Rick Santorum gives Bruce Jenner the benefit of the doubt

Good morning.

▪ “If he says he’s a woman, then he’s a woman.” — conservative Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum on Bruce Jenner.

A staunch opponent of gay marriage, the former Pennsylvania senator offered Jenner some unexpected backing. “My responsibility as a human being is to love and accept everybody. Not to criticize people for who they are. I can criticize, and I do, for what people do, for their behavior. But as far as for who they are, you have to respect everybody,” Santorum said.

▪ “If they go out flailing at each other until August, they won’t have time to flail at Mr. Koster.” — Lana Stein, professor emeritus of political science at the University of Missouri at St. Louis, on the ever-expanding Republican field for Missouri governor.

As the GOP field for Missouri governor grows, so do concerns that the fight over the nomination will undermine the party’s ability to take on Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster in the general election.

▪ “I have a lot of admiration for Hillary Clinton, but she clearly is not trustworthy.” _ former technology executive Carly Fiorina announcing her plans Monday to run for the GOP presidential nomination.

That’s an interesting juxtaposition of ideas in one sentence. Fiorina called out Clinton by name and cited a series of examples to back her point on the trust issue, including Benghazi, Libya, Clinton’s use of a private email server and questionable donations to the Clinton Foundation.

▪ “I hope this will be a Congress of significant accomplishment. I don’t think it’s going to be of huge accomplishment.” — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell assessing the prospects of the current Congress.

Turns out that the top Senate Republican has given up any chance that he and President Barack Obama can strike a major deals on tax reform or entitlements. Obama, he said, “is not a guy who easily goes to the middle.”