The Buzz

TheChat: Jay Nixon, Ferguson come at things from two different perspectives

Good morning.

▪ “You’ve got a guy (Gov. Jay Nixon) who is very respectful of the system, the process, and roles for everybody within the system. And you’ve got a segment of the community that does not believe in the fairness of the system at all. You’re coming at this thing from completely different perspectives. That’s the problem.” — Chuck Hatfield, a former chief of staff to Nixon, describing the problem in Ferguson.

Hatfield sums up the situation in eastern Missouri as succinctly as anyone has. He’s exactly right.

▪ “They're gonna say, `Well, it was time for a change’ and all that...but I can tell you he was in my office last week, he was very frustrated.” — Arizona Sen. John McCain speaking about outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

McCain, a Republican and the incoming chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said Hagel was not happy with a lack of strategy to combat ISIS and help the Ukrainians. Hagel also voiced concern over an overall lack of U.S. influence anywhere these days, McCain said.

▪ “The voters have just gotten tired of appropriations for education, the elderly, even special needs kids being held hostage to politics. And if the Legislature goes through the process of appropriating the money and the governor signs the bills, they don't think that he should then hold that money back on a whim to try and leverage it to get something else out of the Legislature.” — Missouri GOP gubernatorial candidate Catherine Hanaway talking about her support for the recently approved constitutional amendment that reduces the governor’s ability to withhold budgeted funds. (link courtesy of

It’ll be interesting to ask Hanaway about the impact of the amendment a year or two into her governorship if she wins in 2016. This change is more significant than many voters realized and shifts a lot of power back to lawmakers. Whether 163 lawmakers in the House and 34 more in the Senate can manage the state’s ever-changing financial picture better than the governor remains to be seen.

▪ “I probably saved more black lives as mayor of New York City than any mayor in the history of the city, with the possible exception of Mike Bloomberg, who was there for 12 years.” — former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani speaking about the situation in Ferguson.

Giuliani engaged in a heated back-and-forth with Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson on “Meet the Press” Sunday during which the former mayor talked about the scourge of black-on-black crime. Giuliani pointed out that “93 percent of blacks are killed by other blacks.”

▪ “Every day that we continue these unsuccessful talks and repeated extensions with Iran is another day given to Iran to develop a nuclear weapon.” — Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt on Monday on the extension of nuclear talks with Iran by seven months.

Besides his disappointment at the lack of progress, Blunt said it’s time for the Senate to weigh in and impose stronger sanctions on Iran.