Eight years ago, shortly before the GOP captured control of the House of Representatives, then-Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell told National Journal that “the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
McConnell, along with then-House Speaker John Boehner, then proceeded to embark on slaughtering Obama’s agenda for the last six years of his presidency, even after Obama overwhelmingly won re-election in 2012, culminating in the Senate GOP quite literally stealing the Supreme Court vacated by Antonin Scalia from Obama and the Democrats.
Now it’s the Democrats who’ve won back the House, and McConnell (no longer privy to the youthful indiscretion of his late 60s) has changed his tune. McConnell wrote an op-ed yesterday for—who else but Fox News—in which he calls on the Democrats to not “go it alone and simply make political points,” but to “work together and actually make a difference.”
Yes, this is the same fucking guy.
McConnell begins with this premise:
Last Tuesday I was proud to see that the American people voted keep Republicans in control of the U.S. Senate. But we also learned that, come January, the Republican Senate majority will be dealing with a House of Representatives under Democratic control.
Needless to say, the past two years of unified Republican government will be remembered as a period of historic productivity.
Forget about the fact that Democratic Senate candidates received a full 14 million more votes in this election than Republican candidates. What did Republicans in the last Congress actually accomplish?
- A radical exacerbation of inequality through a tax giveaway to corporations and the ultra-wealthy
- A failed attempt to take healthcare away from over 20 million people
- A complete abdication of Congress’ oversight powers as it relates to Donald Trump
- Confirming a guy accused of multiple sexual assaults to the Supreme Court
The rest of the op-ed is just McConnell bragging about a bunch of bills that passed in the last session, but really, who cares? The bigger question is: Who is this for?
It’s not for the Democrats, because they’ve seen how McConnell has worked for eight years and at this point, they’re either complete fucking suckers (Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi), or know the game (pretty much everyone else). It’s not for Fox News’ right-wing audience either, because they don’t actually want the two parties to work together (though for different reasons than Splinter). It’s not for Trump.
The only plausible explanation is that McConnell is attempting to play the media like a fiddle and preemptively shape a narrative that, actually, the Senate GOP is the more reasonable Congressional majority. The fact that Fox News published this one shows that it might not be the easy task that he expected.
All we’re going to hear about for the next two years is “presidential harassment” and “obstruction.” But make no mistake about it: no one in America is more responsible for this strategy than Mitch McConnell.