The Buzz

TheChat: The all-Claire edition


They don’t call her the quote machine for nuthin’.

Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Democrat, talked to former Barack Obama political aide David Axelrod for one of his “Axe Files” podcasts.

She said several intriguing things, so she gets today’s Chat all to herself.

▪ “One of the president's shortcomings is that sometimes he sees the world through his eyes and doesn’t do, I think, enough work on being empathetic about how other people view things.” — on President Obama.

Not sure I’ve anybody articulate it like this before. The guess here is that this point is spot on.

▪  “I watched him find that sweet spot of compromise on immigration reform, but then he broke down like a cheap shotgun the minute the right started chewing on his rear end.” — talking about how Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a presidential candidate, handled immigration reform.

Rubio helped forge a deal on reform that included a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants, only to later back away when conservatives revolted.

▪ “You need to be respected by other senators if you have what it takes to be president of the United States. I mean, Barack Obama wasn’t popular with all the other senators, but he was respected. Marco (Rubio) is respected. I don’t think Ted has the respect of his fellow senators.” — on Cruz, a senator from Texas.

No one seems to like Cruz, and McCaskill was stating bluntly what Arizona Sen. John McCain and others have also said.

▪ “She still is who she is. She’s not comfortable opening up.” — speaking about Hillary Clinton.

Another direct assessment, this one about the Democratic frontrunner. Clinton reminds us a lot of former Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius. You always wonder what she’s really thinking.

▪ “I can get more done on the things I care about here over the next few years than I could in Jeff City.” — on why she opted not to run for governor.

That’s a change for McCaskill who for years talked about trying to become Missouri’s first woman governor. Now, with heavy GOP majorities in both the House and Senate in Jefferson City, she is probably right. McCaskill probably couldn’t pass much of anything in the state Capitol. But she can get things done in Washington.