In 1974, Richard Nixon resigned as president of the United States after he was mired in the Watergate scandal.
In 1990, Margaret Thatcher resigned as British prime minister after narrowly failing to win outright in the first round of a leadership contest.
In 2002, Trent Lott resigned as Senate Republican leader after making some controversial remarks at the 100th birthday party of a fellow senator, Strom Thurmond.
In 2004, George Tenet resigned as director of the CIA in the wake of criticism of the agency’s approach to the intelligence used to support the 2003 Iraq War.
In 2010, Yukio Hatoyama resigned as prime minister of Japan after breaking a campaign promise to close an American military base on the island of Okinawa.
In 2016, David Cameron resigned as prime minister of the United Kingdom after its citizens voted to leave the European Union.
In 2017, Mitch McConnell resigned as Senate majority leader after failing to deliver a vote to repeal Obamacare.
OK, I was dreaming about Mitch McConnell. There is no way this self-serving, self-absorbed politician with an inflated sense of self-worth is ever going to step down, for the good of the party, for the good of the country – but if he had an ounce of decency, he would.
In the examples above, some of those leaders did the honorable thing. Others saw the handwriting on the wall. Still others were nudged or pushed out. In McConnell’s case, it would take a giant crowbar wielded by the Incredible Hulk.
His embarrassing statements before a Rotary Club in Kentucky on Monday illustrate my point. Instead of accepting the blame for his failure, like a man, McConnell lashed out against the “perception” that his is a do-nothing Senate. He laid the blame squarely at the feet of Trump, saying “Our new president, of course, has not been in this line of work before. And I think he had excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process.”
McConnell went on to explain, “Part of the reason I think people feel we’re under-performing is because too many artificial deadlines – unrelated to the reality of the complexity of legislating – may not have been fully understood.”
That’s it. The people and the president are just too dumb to understand how this thing works.
No, Mr. McConnell, we do understand and so does the president. You and the other politicians have obscured the legislative process to try to fool us into thinking you are doing something when you are not. This has allowed you, on occasions too numerous to mention, to vote for a bill while working all the while to see that it is defeated. That’s why Trump came to Washington promising to “drain the swamp.”
Part of draining the swamp necessitates getting rid of the arcane rule called the filibuster. That would make the legislative process in the Senate transparent. Without the filibuster, even a child would know whom to blame for a bill’s success or failure.
To your credit, Senator, you did it for the vote on Neil Gorsuch. Getting him on the Supreme Court was your only real accomplishment. Was Gorsuch simply a payoff for getting your wife appointed secretary of transportation?
Does that mean that all bets are now off and you will go back to your old ways?
But let’s say, for argument’s sake, that McConnell’s heart is now in the right place. It is clear that he has lost the ability to lead, if, indeed, he ever had it.
In 2014, when McConnell was up for re-election, he blamed his ineffectiveness on Democratic control, so he was re-elected in Kentucky and we gave him control of the upper chamber. In 2016, McConnell blamed his ineffectiveness on Obama, so we gave him the White House. Now he wants to blame the Republican president for raising expectations. Please!
McConnell should take a cue from Matt Bevin, the man he defeated in the Republican primary in 2014, who went on to become Kentucky’s governor.
Bevin has stayed true to his conservative principles. In the beginning, when he tried to cut the state’s out-of-control budget, Bevin was extremely unpopular. Now that many of his policies have been implemented, voters are beginning to understand that he is doing the right thing for the state, and his numbers are steadily rising.
Presently, Trump’s average approval rating is only 38 percent, but Mitch McConnell’s is down around 18 percent, or less than half of Trump’s. Clearly, it is time for McConnell to get out of the way!
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