Political Notebook


Stutzman is second from Indiana to get 'Worst Week' treatment

Political Notebook was asked whether Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-3rd, is the first Hoosier to receive the “Worst Week in Washington” designation from Chris Cillizza, who writes The Fix, a column on government and politics, for the Washington Post.

Cillizza gave Stutzman the dubious distinction for the lawmaker’s comment last week on the Republican Party’s stance in the impasse about federal spending, raising the country's debt limit and implementing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The stalemate has shut down parts of the government since Oct. 1.

“We’re not going to be disrespected. We have to get something out of this. And I don’t know what that even is,” Stutzman told the Washington Examiner.

Cillizza wrote, “Democrats, believing that Stutzman had encapsulated everything wrong with the Republican logic regarding the shutdown, pounced on the remark.” President Barack Obama “went on a lengthy riff on Stutzman’s comments during a speech in Maryland on Thursday,” Cillizza noted.

Stutzman is not the only Indiana politician to have gotten the “Worst Week” treatment since Cillizza began it in May 2010. On May 10, 2012, Cillizza bestowed it on 36-year incumbent Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., who had just been clobbered by challenger Richard Mourdock in Indiana’s GOP primary election.

“What Lugar misunderstood was that legislating and campaigning are very different things. Although bipartisanship is an asset when legislating, it can be a killer in campaigns,” Cillizza wrote at the time.

So Lugar had his “Worst Week in Washington” for being too bipartisan and Stutzman had his for being too partisan.