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TheChat: Ex-Sen. Robert Bennett bemoans Pat Roberts’ handling of residency issue

It’s Friday!

“The rules have changed.” — former Utah Sen. Robert F. Bennett bemoaning the fact that Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts, his former colleague, didn’t take care of his residency issue prior to seeking a fourth Senate term.

Bennett expressed amazement that Roberts didn’t do more to deal with the issue especially after residency issues wound up contributing to the defeat of former Indiana Sen. Richard Lugar. In fact, Republican insiders have long fretted about the lackadaisical approach Roberts took to this year’s campaign.

Said Bennett: “Lugar demonstrated, ‘Okay, this is suddenly an issue.’  Fix it right now. That’s the time he should have acted on it. It’s just a matter of inertia — ‘Well, this is the way I’ve been doing it in my 27 years or however long I’ve been in Congress. It’s never hurt me and it won’t hurt me now.’ Yes, it will, Pat.”

“Don’t they deserve some straight talk?” — Arizona Sen. John McCain on Wednesday speaking about Kansas voters who deserve to know, he said, which party that independent candidate Greg Orman would caucus with if elected to the Senate.

“Straight talk” was the phrase that carried McCain to the 2008 GOP presidential nomination, and it’s a phrase he employed again Wednesday in an effort to support Roberts, his long-time Senate colleague, during a visit to Overland Park. Said McCain of Orman, “Why hasn’t this guy been smoked out?”

“His resignation is a service to the public.” — Missouri Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler on the news that Attorney General Eric Holder was resigning.

Republicans greeted the news with relief, insisting that Holder had fallen short in his sworn duty to uphold federal laws. Democrats were muted.

“The aim is to be disruptive in a peaceable way until voices are heard.” — Eric Vickers, a Missouri state Senate staffer, on plans by a group of Ferguson protestors to shut down MetroLink service during Cardinals playoff games.

Tensions remain in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s death, and protests continue to flare. Missouri Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson is back saying he’s ready to use riot gear again.

“They’ve reminded me that it took Tim [Russert] six years to go from third place to first place, and that it took Tom Brokaw even longer on 'Nightly News.'” — “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd explaining his third-place finish for the second straight week in the Sunday talk-show wars.

Todd scored big in the ratings and finished first in his inaugural show, thanks to a one-on-one interview with President Barack Obama. “Meet” was a distant third this last Sunday.

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