The Buzz

TheChat: Mitt Romney announces who he’ll back in Utah this week

Good morning.

▪ “I will vote for Senator Cruz and I encourage others to do so as well, so that we can have an open convention and nominate a Republican.” — Mitt Romney indicating which candidate he’ll back on Tuesday in the Utah Republican caucuses.

Romney isn’t calling this an endorsement, per se. But he’s indicating that a vote for John Kasich essentially is a vote for Donald Trump. And Romney doesn’t want Trump to be the GOP nominee.

▪ “Making it harder for teachers and mental health workers to exercise their constitutional right to organize is wrong and a waste of taxpayer dollars.” — Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon on why he’s vetoing the anti-union “paycheck protection” bill.

GOP leaders said Nixon was standing in the way of worker freedom and choice. Expect a veto override attempt when lawmakers return to Jefferson City after Easter. (link via

▪ “The Darth Vader of the financial services world.” — Missouri Congressman Blaine Luetkemeyer describing Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who is a backer of Dodd-Frank, the 2010 federal law aimed at reforming Wall Street.

Luetkemeyer, a Republican, opposed the law. He also said someone should “find a way to neuter” Warren, a remark that drew a sharp rebuke from the Democratic senator.

▪ “We want the current Common Core standards to end in 2017.” — Kansas state Rep. Amanda Grosserode, a Lenexa Republican, on a House vote last week on the statewide education standards for public schools.

The vote followed four years of debate. The bill the House passed requires the Kansas State Board of Education to present a new set of standards to the Legislature.