Mitch McConnell was the architect of the Senate’s refusal even to consider President Obama’s nomination of Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. That showed McConnell’s disdain for the President, going all the way back to 2008 when he vowed to make President Obama a one-termer. McConnell’s intransigence also showed disdain for the democratic process, for the Senate, and for Judge Garland — a widely respected jurist on both sides of the aisle.
Now there is another controversy with McConnell center stage.
In an article entitled “Where is the Outrage Over Russia’s Hack of the U.S. Election?”, journalist Paul Waldman highlights another point at which McConnell’s intense partisanship showed disdain for American democracy and for us, the voters.
We already knew that the Democratic National Committee had been hacked, as had the emails of John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s campaign. We also knew that intelligence officials and independent cybersecurity analysts believed that those hacks came from Russia.
But Friday, The Washington Post reported that the intelligence community had definitively concluded that Russia was behind these hacks, not merely to sow chaos and destabilization but to help Trump win.
The Post told of an extraordinary meeting on Capitol Hill in mid-September, when FBI Director James Comey, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson and other officials met with the leadership of both parties. They made the case for a bipartisan statement sending a warning to Russia that such actions would not be tolerated.
But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell put the kibosh on it.
“McConnell raised doubts about the underlying intelligence and made clear to the administration that he would consider any effort by the White House to challenge the Russians publicly an act of partisan politics,” the Post reported, citing accounts of several officials.“
Life surely isn’t fair. Despite his actions which have been profoundly damaging to the country, McConnell is set for another terms as Majority Leader, with his party in control of Congress, the Presidency, and soon enough, the Supreme Court. And his wife, Elaine Chao, gets a cabinet post in the Trump administration.
The rest of us get Trump, an election heavily influenced by Russia, and a newly emboldened Vladimir Putin salivating over Trump’s Secretary of State pick, the CEO of Exxon Mobil Rex Tillerson.
The next thing I expect to read about is the formation of Trump Energy, so that Donald and the family can get a cut of the deal between Russia and Exxon Mobil over fossil fuel production.
I think McConnell’s actions are quite rightly called sins against our values, our democracy, our future.