As Mitch McConnell makes an ass of himself and his office today on the Senate floor, calling on Democrats to simply stop looking any further in the Mueller investigation as though Trump’s hand-picked Attorney General was actually accurate in his summary, you may be tempted to ask yourself how we got to this point.
How is it that America wound up with a corrupt President that seemingly answers to no one?
The key is in who should be holding him to account but isn’t. Yes, Democrats have a role to play, and we are anxious to see when impeachment proceedings might begin — although there is still some disagreement within the party as to whether that’s the best course of action. But the fact is that Democrats control only one half of one-third of the three branches of government. The ability to truly hold Trump’s feet to the fire would require Democratic control of the Senate as well, at the very least, and having a liberal majority on the Supreme Court wouldn’t hurt, either.
Instead, Mitch McConnell, the longtime Senate Majority Leader, is left to be the steward of Trump’s accountability. And simply put, he refuses to hold him accountable.
But it’s no surprise that Mitch, given a right-wing extremist in the White House, would become something of an authoritarian extremist himself. He made no secret of the fact that he wanted to force conservative policy even when there was a Democrat in the White House, and because Republicans were in the majority, he succeeded. In fact, in 10 seconds, Mitch can tell you exactly how:
In an interview that went largely unnoticed at the time, Obama explained his relationship with Mitch and the other Republicans in the House and Senate while he was President. New York Magazine‘s Jonathan Chait sat with Obama near the end of his second term and asked about the fabled Heritage Foundation speech in which Mitch vowed to make him a one-term President, and Obama’s answer was as depressing for America as it was infuriating about the GOP:
By that point it was pretty apparent by his actions that it was already his No. 1 goal. He validated what I think most of this town knew … If they were able to maintain uniform opposition to whatever I proposed, that would send a signal to the public of gridlock, dysfunction, and that would help them win seats in the midterms. It was that second strategy that they pursued with great discipline. It established the dynamic for not just my presidency but for a much sharper party-line approach to managing both the House and the Senate that I think is going to have consequences for years to come.”
In fact, as Obama discovered shortly after hearing Mitch give his “one term” speech, Republicans had already formulated their plan to simply oppose everything he did no matter what it was before he was even inaugurated:
As a consequence, there were times that I would meet with Mitch McConnell and he would say to me very bluntly, ‘Look, I’m doing you a favor if I do any deal with you, so it should be entirely on my terms because it hurts me just being seen photographed with you.'”
Looking back at Mitch’s attitude during the Obama administration should serve as a stark reminder for all Americans that he has never done anything in good faith, and seeing the Trump presidency through the tribulations of the Russia investigation is just the most logical next step for a man who has not only lost his way, but sold his soul.
Featured image is a screen capture.