The Buzz

TheChat: David Axelrod says maybe the Clintons are their own worst problem

Good morning.

▪ “When the exact same problems crop up in separate campaigns, with different staff, at what point do the principals say, 'Hey, maybe it's US?'" — David Axelrod, a former top political adviser to President Barack Obama, talking about Bill and Hillary Clinton in a comment on Twitter.

Hillary Clinton reportedly is looking at a staff shakeup akin to what she did in 2008, and that’s what Axelrod was addressing. Obama, of course, defeated Clinton after a tough primary campaign in 2008. Former colleagues of Axelrod’s are working on Clinton’s team this year.

▪ “I feel like I’m tilting at windmills.” — Missouri state Sen. David Pearce, a Warrensburg Republican, on his call for campaign contribution limits.

Missouri doesn’t have limits, meaning donors can give unlimited campaign contributions to state politicians. Although Pearce favors them, GOP leaders in the General Assembly have nixed the idea for another year.

▪ “I know I don’t have the votes to advance this bill. I’m thankful we had this discussion today. I’m convinced this issue is moving in the right direction.” — Missouri state Sen. Paul Wieland, an Imperial Republican, on his push to end the death penalty in the state.

The debate in the Senate this week represented the farthest the push to end capital punishment has gotten in Missouri in years. Wieland said he doubts that the existence of the death penalty is much of a deterrent to violent crime and said he remains concerned the state will execute an innocent person. (link via

▪ “We have no rainy day fund, we have no ending balance and this is the closest thing we have to getting us some working capital that we need.” — Kansas state Sen. Jim Denning, an Overland Park Republican, explaining why the state should delay payments to the state pension fund.

Some lawmakers questioned whether the money would ever be repaid, especially if budget problems persist. Nonetheless, a Senate committee approved the change.