The Buzz

TheChat: Hillary Clinton is loosening up on the campaign trail



▪ “ much better extemporaneously. She sounds scripted when she’s reading from a text and when she goes off text she sounds much more natural.” — former Hillary Clinton aide Lissa Muscatine, who wrote for Hillary Clinton when she was first lady, during the 2008 campaign and at the State Department.

Muscatine is pleased to see Clinton open up more on the campaign trail and even sing in public and name her favorite drink (a vodka martini). And she defended Clinton for being so reticent to open up, given the cottage industry that’s been built up around the idea of taking her down.

▪ “Show-Me State pundits agree that the perception of Blunt as more a Washingtonian than a hurting him.” — a Newsmax analysis of the 2016 U.S. Senate race in Missouri.

This pundit concluded this: “Once thought invincible, Republican Sen. Roy Blunt now finds himself facing a surprisingly spirited challenge from Democratic Secretary of State and former U.S. Army Intelligence officer Jason Kander.”

▪ “We can’t count on it for fiscal 2016.” — Missouri budget director Dan Haug on how the state can’t depend on getting $50 million in anticipated tobacco settlement money that was budgeted to be spent this fiscal year.

A September appeals court ruling means the state won’t get the money unless an appeal to the Missouri Supreme Court succeeds. Even then, the process will take so much time that the state probably won’t be able to spend the money this year. This is big blow to the budget.

▪ “We believe that Kansas taxpayer dollars should stay in Kansas, and it is unfortunate that our state has done nothing about this.” — Cindy Samuelson, a vice president of the Kansas Hospital Association, on the need to expand Medicaid in the state.

An email from an aide to Gov. Sam Brownback said expanding Medicaid is an “Obamacare ruse.” The remark has once again stirred passions on the issue with both sides issuing talking points this week on how to best defend well-entrenched positions. The closing of Mercy Hospital in Independence, Kan., has also contributed to the discussion.