Tag Archives: Kevin McCarthy

McCarthy is no Pelosi

Having declared my faint hope that the cowardly U.S. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy will find the courage to stand up to the MAGA cabal within his congressional caucus, I want to offer a brief comparison to the woman he hopes to succeed as speaker of the House.

McCarthy will march to the MAGA cadence, I am quite sure. The current speaker, McCarthy’s fellow Californian Nancy Pelosi, also felt pressure from her progressive House members. They wanted her to impeach Donald Trump far sooner than she eventually did.

Pelosi stood firm against the likes of The Squad and other ultra-progressives. She, in effect, told them to pipe down and let her lead the House as she saw fit.

Pelosi eventually announced the impeachment inquiry after the then-president sought a political favor from the Ukraine president, seeking him to dig up dirt on Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. The speaker was not going to be pushed into acting prematurely.

Will the man who wants to be speaker show the same courage?

I am trying to stop snickering at the notion.


Will the coward find courage?

I have gone on record calling Kevin McCarthy, the man who wants to become speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, an unmitigated coward.

The House Republican leader is trying to muster enough House votes to be elected to the post he wants to inherit from Democrat Nancy Pelosi. He doesn’t have 218 votes yet, as some of the 222 GOP House members have said they want someone else to lead the body.

How can the coward demonstrate some needed courage in the event he takes the gavel from Speaker Pelosi? He can stand up against the MAGA wing of his GOP caucus, telling them to settle down and learn to work with Democrats if they hope to get anything constructive done in the118th Congress.

Some of the MAGA-ites have declared they do not want to work with Democrats. They say working with the other party is similar to surrendering to their philosophy.

The MAGA Republicans are feeling their oats these days, despite so many like-minded candidates losing in the midterm election to Democrats. They hold plenty of power as itis, but they want more.

Whoever ascends to the speakership — and it well could be McCarthy — can show significant courage by telling the MAGA cabal to, um … stuff it.

Will it happen? I am not holding my breath!


Concerns over new Congress

Those of us who have legislative priorities we want to see fulfilled appear to be headed toward a season of disappointment as the new Congress gets ready to take its seat in Washington, D.C.

I want desperately to be wrong on this. Sadly, my fears might prove true.

Republicans are going to take assorted House committee gavels from their Democratic colleagues in early January. A new speaker of the House will appoint chairs to the various panels. If the speaker is Kevin McCarthy of California, then I have little hope he’ll search through his caucus for statesmen and women for these key jobs.

The committee chairs will be able to control legislative flow. They will be responsible for setting committee hearings and for deciding whether to refer items to the full House.

The items are plentiful. They involve abortion rights, climate change/global warming, gun violence, continuing aid to Ukraine in its war with Russia, domestic spending and taxation … you name it.

I worry that good government will be overtaken by sniping and hearings into alleged corruption by the son of the president of the United States. I worry about the impeachment resolutions against President Biden, Attorney General Merrick Garland, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and others. I am concerned about the possibility of dragging soon-to-be-retired health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci to Capitol Hill for more hearings.

I am heartened by the realization that the Senate will remain in Democratic hands. It gives me hope that whatever foolishness that comes from the House can be derailed by the upper chamber that still will be run by adults.

Still, the new season awaits. I am not looking forward to the nonsense that lies ahead.


Lame-duck Congress needs to soar

One usually doesn’t expect much from lame ducks, whether they are politicians or the governing bodies in which they serve.

That is decidedly not the case involving the current Congress, which is now officially entering its lame-duck status. Those of us who are concerned about the status of good government and of congressional investigations into the effort to overturn a free and fair election are expecting a great deal out of this lame duck Congress.

I shall specify.

Republicans who are taking over leadership of the next Congress say they intend to investigate — get ready for it! — Hunter Biden’s business dealings. Yes, President Biden’s son is being targeted for investigation. What about inflation? What about the Ukraine War? What about climate change? Or gun violence? Hey, that’ll have to wait until the GOP finishes its probe into Hunter Biden’s business activity! What utter crap!

Then we have the 1/6 committee’s report. The House select panel is finishing up its own probe into Donald J. Trump’s effort to overturn the election that tossed him out of office. The committee led by Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., needs to get its findings on the record. House Republican leaders are all but certain to toss it aside once they assume power.

The House GOP’s slim majority apparently gives the nut job wing of the Republican caucus even more power. The MAGA/Big Liar cabal is going to lean hard on the presumptive speaker, Kevin McCarthy, to do its bidding. It will be fascinating in the extreme to see whether McCarthy resists their demands and gives the more establishment members of his caucus — not to mention the Democrats — more of his attention.

McCarthy has shown a cowardly tendency, sad to say, toward kowtowing to the nut jobs — starting with the Nut Job in Chief, one Donald John Trump. McCarthy stood on the floor immediately after the assault on the Capitol on 1/6 and declared that Trump was singularly responsible for inciting the assault on our government. Then he ventured to Mar-a-Lago, shook Trump’s hand and mugged for the cameras as if to tell the Insurrectionist in Chief, “Hey, it’s OK now. I was just kidding when I said those things. I’m with ya.”

Thus, the lame-duck Congress becomes important. Highly important, in fact.


Will majority be worth it?

Let’s presume that the conventional wisdom holds up in the wake of the 2022 midterm election, which is that Republicans are going to win a majority of the House seats and will be in charge when the next Congress convenes in January.

What I am going to wonder aloud is whether the House GOP leadership team can govern. Will it be able to control its own members, let alone dictate the flow of legislation that comes from the lower legislative chamber?

I doubt it. Seriously!

House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy was thought to be a shoo-in for speaker if Republicans took command. Even that’s in doubt today.

McCarthy has pissed off the right-wing Freedom Caucus wing of his House members. He also has angered the establishment wing of those who call themselves Republicans. The MAGA lovers wanted a much larger majority; they won’t get it. The establishment wing of the GOP wants to work with Democrats on legislation; that likely won’t happen, either, given Democrats’ anger at McCarthy over his back-tracking on Donald Trump’s role in the 1/6 insurrection.

I keep seeing models suggesting Republicans will win 219 House seats; Democrats are slated to occupy 216 of them. The majority party needs 218 to take command. A one-seat cushion isn’t very, um, secure … you know?

This all makes the GOP majority practically worthless.

The current speaker, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, is holding out hope that her party can squeak through by retaining a majority. That’s brave talk from a battle-tested political warrior.

Even though I am sitting in the peanut gallery, the cheap-seat view tells me that Republicans are going to eke out their cherished majority. However, I am going to wonder whether it’s worth having.

As the saying goes, elections do have consequences. We’re going to get a good look at how those consequences play out once the new Congress takes over.


Don’t turn back on Ukraine

Memo to Kevin McCarthy: If Republicans take control of Congress after the midterm election, y’all will trifle with trouble if you resist delivering as much aid as possible to Ukraine, which is fighting — successfully — for its independence against Russian aggressors.

The U.S. House GOP leader has said Congress might keep the checkbook open as the war progresses. My own view is that McCarthy is sending a chilling message to Ukrainians and is giving a bit  of comfort to Russian thug Vladimir Putin as he continues to prosecute his immoral and illegal war against Ukraine.

It seems plausible, in a bizarre way, for the Republican congressional leader t threaten to pull back on aid to Ukraine. The GOP’s titular leader, Donald Trump, has been cold-stone silent on the Russian invasion, seeming to imply an endorsement of the action that Putin took against a sovereign nation.

Is this the kind of congressional leadership this country needs in this time of dire peril? I think not!


What if these folks had remained?

The U.S. House select committee that Speaker Nancy Pelosi impaneled to examine the 1/6 insurrection is performing a stellar public service in delivering evidence to Americans who want to know the truth behind what happened on that horrifying day.

But … you know what? It could’ve gone sideways in a major hurry had the House GOP leader’s selections to the committee been allowed to stay on the panel.

Kevin McCarthy selected several Republican House members to serve on the panel, but Pelosi — acting within her authority as the House’s presiding officer — nixed those picks.

One of them, I hasten to add, was none other than Jim Jordan, the Ohio GOP lawmaker who has made quite a (nasty) name for himself with his bloviating bluster while seeking to deflect any blame for the insurrection from his guy, the 45th POTUS.

I was thinking of Jordan today as I watched Day Five of the televised hearings and wondering: How would these hearings go if wild men such as Jordan been kept on the panel?

I have been trying to wrap my noggin around that thought. I say that, though, wondering if there isn’t a way for the panel to summon more Trump-friendly witnesses to justify the events of 1/6 and how the insurrection wasn’t what it damn sure looked like to me and millions of others who saw it unfold in real time. It looked like a frontal assault on our democratic process with one aim: to overturn the free, fair and legal results of the 2020 presidential election.

You can bet your first-born child that a dedicated Trumpkin serving on the committee would spin the insurrection into something that none of us would recognize.

The committee that emerged from the mess left at its creation, though, is a bipartisan panel, comprising two Republicans along with seven Democrats. It has performed beautifully in collecting and presenting evidence to the public.

I also want to offer a high-five to Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., who has conducted the hearings with decorum, grace and class as it has slogged through the mountain of evidence that keeps getting higher after every session.

There’s more to come? Yes. I am waiting with bated breath.


Tough to comprehend

I am likely to go to my grave never understanding how a politician can be heard threatening his colleagues over their conduct in the wake of a violent political insurrection can receive — allegedly — a standing ovation when he rises to speak to them in person.

So it was, reportedly, when U.S. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy spoke to his GOP colleagues today. It all comes after media reports — complete with audio recordings of McCarthy — of the pol’s indignation over the 1/6 riot that sought to subvert our democracy.

I mean, you can hear McCarthy talk angrily of his colleagues’ behavior during and immediately after the riot. Then he said something profoundly stupid to them.

He wasn’t talking “publicly” about them, only “privately,” and added that he wouldn’t ever say those things in public.

Why, the House Republican caucus members just stood and cheered their hero, who wants to be the next speaker of the House if his party takes control of Congress after the midterm election later this year.

Go fu**ing figure.


We are headed for catastrophe … seriously!

Excuse my tendency to push the proverbial panic button with regard to the midterm election, but I have to declare my fear that we could be headed for governmental catastrophe if Congress flips from Democratic to Republican control.

Indeed, I am concerned about Mitch McConnell become majority leader if the Senate flips. Today, though, it’s House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy who has earned the bulk of my wrath. McCarthy truly gives me the heebie-jeebies.

McCarthy wants to become speaker. If the House flips to his party, then he stands a good chance — I fear! — of being chosen speaker. What does that mean for those of us who favor good government? It means the House well could launch a torrent of probes designed to embarrass Democrats.

It well could become payback time in the People’s House.

Why do I worry about McCarthy? Because we now have a possibly presumptive speaker who has been recorded on audio saying something he actually well could deny he said, which was that he intended to encourage Donald J. Trump to resign from the presidency in the wake of the 1/6 insurrection.

He said as much to Rep. Liz Cheney. Then he denied saying it — until an audio recording surfaced.

This guy is a coward. So is Mitch McConnell, to be candid. Both of these individuals blamed Donald Trump for “provoking” the Capitol Hill riot on 1/6. Then McCarthy voted against impeaching Trump and McConnell voted to acquit him in the Senate trial that commenced after the second impeachment.

Will any of this occur? The tides are moving toward a GOP blowout on Election Day. That the president’s party would suffer a congressional election setback is not unusual. It is usually the case. Both legislative chambers have razor-thin Democratic majorities, so it won’t take much for the GOP to take control of the legislative branch of government.

I just worry for the sake of good government, though, that the next speaker of the House could be a cowardly liar who backed away from his condemnation of what the world saw occur on 1/6 and then sucked up to the Insurrectionist in Chief.

I don’t want the catastrophe to occur. Nor should anyone who values this democratic process of ours.


Profiles in cowardice

(Photo by Michael Kovac/WireImage)

Watching the congressional Republican leadership tie itself into knots over how to handle its relationship with the immediate past POTUS makes me wonder how on this good Earth these individuals can live with themselves.

I want to single out two of them: one from the Senate and one from the House.

Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina once declared that he was done with Donald Trump. “Enough is enough,” he said immediately after the 1/6 riot. “Count me out,” he added. He couldn’t stand the thought — allegedly — of associating himself with a president who had incited the riot that stormed onto Capitol Hill.

House GOP leader Kevin McCarthy of California once stood on the House floor and declared that Trump was singularly responsible for the attack on our democracy and demanded he be held accountable. He pleaded with Donald Trump during the riot to get the mob to stop inflicting damage on the Capitol, receiving the hideous response from the POTUS that “I guess, Kevin, they care more about the election than you do.”

Both men have turned tail from those remarks.

Graham has all but threatened other GOP senators with retribution if they don’t climb aboard the Trump clown car and back the former Liar in Chief. McCarthy has declared that he won’t submit to questions from the 1/6 House committee seeking answers to the riot and has said he intends to boot Democrats off key committees if he becomes speaker after this year’s midterm election.

Gutlessness, anyone? There it is in full view.

They aren’t the only exhibits of profiles in cowardice. They’re just two of the more notable examples of how members of Congress who swear to protect the Constitution now are pledging craven fealty to a twice-impeached individual.

Cowards. Every damn one of them!