On Senate floor Mitch McConnell rips a federal holiday for Election Day as part of a “power grab” by Democrats to win elections.
— Steven Dennis (@StevenTDennis) January 30, 2019
When you insist that a bill designed to support voting rights for everyone, shine a light on billionaire donors, crack down on lobbyists' influence and protect our elections from foreign interference would just help Democrats, that's a pretty big tell. https://t.co/daXp87DMBo
— Kevin M. Kruse (@KevinMKruse) January 30, 2019
And it’s getting more widely noticed…
I'm starting to better understand Mitch McConnell. He's not leading a co-equal branch of govt. He's leading a corrupt cabal of complicit conservative co-conspirators in congress who conducted a coup to control the courts & now don't give a damn what Putin's Puppet POTUS does. pic.twitter.com/lqLwAXgVN7
— Mike Green (@amikegreen2) January 25, 2019
… There simply is no more loathsome creature walking the political landscape than the Majority Leader of the United States Senate. You have to go back to McCarthy or McCarran to find a Senate leader who did so much damage to democratic norms and principles than this yokel from Kentucky. Trump is bad enough, but he’s just a jumped-up real-estate crook who’s in over his head. McConnell is a career politician who knows full well what he’s doing to democratic government and is doing it anyway because it gives him power, and it gives the rest of us a wingnut federal judiciary for the next 30 years. There is nothing that this president* can do that threatens McConnell’s power as much as it threatens the survival of the republic, and that’s where we are.
McConnell declared himself in opposition to Barack Obama right from the first day in office. There’s even video. Most noxiously, in reference to our present moment, when Obama came to him and asked him to present a united front against the Russian ratfcking that was enabling El Caudillo del Mar-a-Lago, McConnell turned him down, flat. Moreover, he told Obama that, if Obama went public, McConnell would use it as a political hammer on Hillary Rodham Clinton. (Obama should have done it anyway, god knows.) McConnell issued a watery denial of these charges, but there’s no good goddamn reason to believe him.
He doesn’t have the essential patriotism god gave a snail. He pledges allegiance to his donors, and they get what they want. He’s selling out his country, and he’s doing it in real-time and out in the open. This is worse than McCarthy or McCarran ever were. Mitch McConnell is the the thief of the nation’s soul.
“I believe that Mitch McConnell has ruined the Senate” — Harry Reid to the NYTM, in a very readable look at the Kentucky Republican https://t.co/rGYx26RKZj
— Sam Stein (@samstein) January 22, 2019
Readable, and terrifying:
… McConnell, who has represented Kentucky in the Senate for 34 years and, as of last June, is the longest-serving Republican leader in Senate history, is one of Washington’s most famously inexpressive creatures. “You’ve got to see the gears turning behind the eyes, because the mouth isn’t moving very much,” Ryan told me…
… [B]y the fall of last year, McConnell had emerged as one of the few unambiguous winners of the Trump presidency to date. When I first spoke with him, this past November, he talked of the preceding two years with a faint air of mystified amusement at his own fortune: as if a minor meteor had streaked through the window of the majority leader’s office, narrowly missing his head before exploding against the two-century-old marble fireplace, and then also turned out to be filled with candy and hundred-dollar bills. “I think even though we’re pretty different in every way you can think of,” he told me, clearing his throat, “we’ve had a good sort of team effort here to accomplish as much as we can.”
He was the Trump administration’s indispensable partner in seating two Supreme Court justices and 83 lower-court judges: a generational remaking of the courts that has made McConnell, “in my view, the most consequential majority leader, certainly, in modern history,” says Leonard Leo, the conservative legal activist who serves as executive vice president of the Federalist Society and as an adviser to the Trump administration on the court appointments. Shortly after the midterm elections, McConnell’s longtime adviser J. Scott Jennings described to me how McConnell had “taken on this role as the principal enabler of the Trump agenda,” and he meant it as a compliment. There had been an improbable synergy between the two men: the president who covets power but has little sense or discipline in wielding it, and the legislator who has often seemed to consider the skillful exercise of power an end unto itself…
What began as the moronic stubbornness of an incompetent POTUS has become a win for a corrupt White House bent on hobbling government itself.
Mitch McConnell, whether by accident or design, is singlehandedly responsible for undermining the United States government. https://t.co/SxWm3AnYyI
— The Hoarse Whisperer (@HoarseWisperer) January 22, 2019
Trump genuinely admires him, of course, if you believe his former comms director:
… “We’re going to have to keep everyone together, because we’re going to be doing this without any Democratic votes,” McConnell said.
“Really?” Trump replied, suddenly intrigued. “You don’t think we’ll get any?”
The owlish, placid Senate majority leader spoke quietly but firmly. “No, Mr. President,” McConnell said. “Not one.” Democrats had passed Obamacare without any Republican votes. If Republicans were going to repeal it, McConnell believed they’d have to do it in the same way.
“What about Joe Manchin?” Trump asked, as if McConnell must have forgotten him. Manchin, a 69-year-old West Virginia Democrat who liked to position himself as above partisan politics and willing to work with the GOP, was coming up for reelection in 2018 in a state that Trump had won by 42 points. On top of that, Trump viewed him as a personal friend. Surely his buddy Joe would play ball.
“Absolutely not, Mr. President,” McConnell said in a tone that seemed designed to end the debate.
“Really?” the president asked. Often the contrarian, he seemed to view this as a personal challenge as well as a test of his persuasiveness. “I have a wonderful relationship with him; I think he might come around.”
McConnell didn’t flinch. He stayed sitting upright in his brown leather chair, elbows on the armrests and hands clasped underneath his chin.
“Mr. President,” he began, “he’ll never be with us when it counts. I’ve seen this time and time again. We’re going to do everything in our power to beat him when he comes up for reelection in 2018.”…
“Well, Joe’s been a friend of mine, so we’ll have to see,” Trump said, turning his attention back to McConnell. “Do we have to go after him like that?” “Absolutely, Mr. President,” McConnell shot back without a moment’s hesitation. “We’re going to crush him like a grape.” Outside the walls of the Roosevelt Room, the conventional wisdom was that men like McConnell would temper Trump’s aggressive impulses. Just the opposite was happening right now. There was a brief silence—maybe a half second—when the atmosphere in the room felt like the scene in Goodfellas when no one can tell how Joe Pesci is going to react to Ray Liotta calling him “funny.” Would he freak out? Would he laugh it off? Finally Trump broke the tension.
“This guy’s mean as a snake!” he said, pointing at McConnell and looking around the room. The entire group burst out laughing.
“I like it, though, Mitch,” he continued, giving McConnell two quick pats on the back. “If that’s what you think we need to do.”
“I do,” McConnell said, never breaking his steely-eyed character…
“If the US has someone whom historians will look back on as the gravedigger of American democracy, it is Mitch McConnell.” – Christopher R. Browning
— GailPC (@gailkiddenmom) January 22, 2019