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Posted at 5:32 PM ET, 02/ 7/2011

Afternoon Fix: Race for Harman's seat begins, Hatch doing tea party event

By Chris Cillizza

Jane Harman is retiring and there's already a candidate for her seat, Fox News has released more of their interview with Obama, Orrin Hatch is meeting the tea party and Sarah Palin is defending gay groups at CPAC.

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*Florida Democratic chairman Rod Smith, asked about mistakes made in the 2010 gubernatorial campaign, responded thusly: "After the election, I sat down with my consultants, and their names were John Walker, James Beam and Jose Cuervo, my Hispanic consultant. When I finished with them I was done with that consultation."

* In an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin welcomed the inclusion of gay groups in this weekend's Conservative Political Action Conference. "The more information that people have the better," she said.

*Jack Kimball, Chairman of the New Hampshire Republican Party, has picked a new communications director: Christine Baratta, a former staffer for Senate candidate Jim Bender.

* Bristol Palin is coming out with a memoir this summer, as yet untitled but


* The Democratic Leadership Council, a centrist organization that helped launch President Clinton's political career, is disbanding, Politico reports. The group never regained the relevance it had during Clinton's presidency.

* Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) will be on MSNBC's "Andrea Mitchell Reports" on Tuesday, a day after the longtime House member announced that she plans to resign. Harman's exit was a surprise to many Democrats, who reported first hearing of it on the MSNBC airwaves. L.A. councilwoman Janice Hahn is already in the race to replace her.

*Fox News is airing more of Bill O'Reilly's interview with President Obama tonight. On working with Republicans to cut spending, the president said, "The only way you make those tough decisions is if you're willing to cut the other side a little bit of slack." He added that with his proposed cuts, "we'll be spending less in terms of discretionary spending, we'll be spending less than we did under Reagan."

*The Tea Party Express is holding an town hall on Tuesday at the National Press Club and Sen. Orrin Hatch (R), facing a potential tea party primary challenge, will participate. Tea Party-backed Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.), along with House Tea Party Caucus members Steve King (R-Iowa), Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) will join in.

* Politics and Pints returns tonight! Head to Capitol Lounge, 231 Pennsylvania Avenue Southeast, at 7 p.m. for trivia, beer, wings, prizes and other good things.


The best Superbowl ads

With Rachel Weiner and Aaron Blake

By Chris Cillizza  | February 7, 2011; 5:32 PM ET
Categories:  Afternoon Fix  
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Next: The decline and fall of the Democratic Leadership Council

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