Tag Archives: Mitch McConnell

McConnell: who needs to govern?

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell has made a startling admission.

He has acknowledged, in effect, that he has no interest in governance. He said that “100 percent of my focus is to block” everything that President Biden wants to do.

There. You got that?

This is the same guy who in 2010 declared that his sole focus was to make Barack H. Obama “a one-term president.” Well, that mission went down in flames, as President Obama was re-elected two years later.

Now the Kentucky Republican has in effect doubled down on his earlier mission statement by saying that he is focused solely on blocking Joe Biden’s agenda.

What, I dare ponder, is Mitch McConnell’s agenda … if he has one.

Mitch gets roughed up by his guy … Donald

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

How much more verbal abuse can Mitch McConnell take from Donald Trump?

That’s my question of the moment after hearing what Trump said about the U.S. Senate Republican leader at that GOP donors dinner in Florida this weekend.

Trump called McConnell a “dumb son of a bi***” and a “stone-cold loser.” Oh, and Trump also lambasted other Republicans in the House and Senate who said some mean things about him, not to mention the insults he hurled at Democrats. Let’s not forget that Trump also trashed former Vice President Mike Pence because Pence didn’t do Trump’s bidding, which would have required him to violate the U.S. Constitution.

I ask this about Mitch because of something McConnell said about Trump shortly after The Donald left the presidency. He said — and this is astonishing — that he would “absolutely” support Trump were he to become the GOP’s 2024 presidential nominee.

He threw his support behind Trump after declaring that ex-POTUS was responsible for the Jan. 6 insurrection on Capitol Hill, that he “provoked” the mob of terrorists to storm the Capitol Building and prevent the counting of Electoral College votes certifying the election of Joe Biden as the next president.

So, McConnell endorses a possible — but in my view highly unlikely — Trump presidential candidacy. What does he get in return? Yet another verbal slap in the puss from the former Imbecile in Chief.

Mitch backs down … who knew?

(Photo by Salwan Georges/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell has taken back what he said about Major League Baseball, Coca-Cola and Delta Airlines’ decision to oppose a controversial Georgia vote law.

He said that big business should stay out of politics. McConnell admitted he didn’t speak “artfully” about the firms’ opposition to regulations that critics contend limit voters’ access to casting ballots.

McConnell backs away from warning businesses to stay out of politics (msn.com)

The truth is that McConnell has been exposed once again as the political hypocrite for which he has become infamous. You see, McConnell said that the Supreme Court’s decision in 2010 to allow corporations to contribute unlimited amounts of political money was, um, all right with him. The case became known as “Citizens United.”

So, it was all right for corporations to donate to GOP campaigns but not all right when they oppose GOP-friendly legislation and laws.

Don’t get me wrong. I am glad that GOP leader McConnell has switched gears on this matter. I just felt the need to put it in some context that McConnell chose to overlook.

POTUS looks for patriots

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

President Biden is striving mightily to appeal to our love of country while pitching hard for a massive new program aimed at repairing, restoring and reviving our nation’s infrastructure.

He is running — so far, at least — into a partisan wall erected by Republicans who comprise the so-called “loyal opposition.”

Biden wants to spend at least $2 trillion on repairing our nation’s roads, highways, bridges, rail lines, airports, water delivery systems, all while improving Internet service.

It’s the patriotic thing to do, he said this week in a speech in Pittsburgh. The president is right, but … hold on! Republicans say it’s too costly. They don’t want to pay for it by increasing taxes on millionaires and others who got a huge tax cut from Donald J. Trump and the GOP-led majorities in both congressional chambers.

Joe Biden proposes to increase the corporate tax rate from 21 to 28 percent. Here’s the deal, though: The 28-percent tax rate proposed by the president is still less than what it was before Trump and his Trumpkins slashed the rate to 21 percent.

Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell calls President Biden’s proposal a “Trojan horse” that is actually full of too many perks for the “far left wing” of the Democratic Party. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the unofficial leader of the House progressive movement, doesn’t think the president goes far enough. She wants to spend at least — I hope you’re sitting down for this — $10 trillion. To which I say: Holy crap, AOC! Are you out of your mind?

So, the president’s search for patriots among us is running into resistance from the far left and the far right. Meanwhile, the vast moderate middle, which polls suggest supports what the president wants to do, is being kicked around while the extremists fight it out on the edges.

Go figure.

Trump goes to ‘war’

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Donald John Trump no longer occupies the White House. He is the first-ever U.S. president to be twice impeached. He escaped conviction both times, but his reputation is scarred forever.

Does that silence the former president? Does it consign him to the back of the room where he would sit silently?

Hardly. He is now going after Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell in a personal, insulting and denigrating way.

I guess the two no longer are the pals they became after Trump got elected in 2016. I mean, all McConnell did for Trump was delay a Supreme Court confirmation until after Trump took office in 2017, enabling him to nominate Neil Gorsuch to the seat that should have gone to Merrick Garland. If Trump had an ounce of gratitude in his overfed body, he would realize he owes McConnell bigly for that opportunity.

Trump, in Scorching Attack on McConnell, Urges G.O.P. to Replace Him (msn.com)

No, he’s angry now because McConnell managed to tell us what he should have said long ago, which is that Trump provoked the riot that damn near could have resulted in harm to Vice President Mike Pence. McConnell did cast a not guilty vote in the Senate trial, but then kinda/sorta walked it back by saying he voted that way on a technicality.

Hey, I am not going to shed any tears for McConnell. I figure he can hold his own against the numbskull ex-president. Besides, I think he’s acted in a detestable manner, just not for the reasons that Trump cited in his lengthy statement.

Donald Trump has just shown us — as if we needed reminding — that he is going to keep flapping his yapper.

Why the GOP struggle to loosen Trump’s grip?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell reportedly is struggling to move the GOP away from the Donald Trump era into, well, something that might resemble the world that used to welcome his political party.

Put another way, McConnell might seek to shed the GOP as being the Party of Trump. Good call, if that is his aim.

I struggle to realize why it’s so hard for Republican Party honchos to separate themselves from this toxic president. Trump will be gone in two days. Trumpism, the remnants of the movement that Trump created, will continue. Whether it is as strong and vocal as it has been during Trump’s time as president remains to be seen.

Truth be told, Donald Trump is not a Republican. He is not the real thing. He ran as a Republican only because it would provide the clearer path for him to the presidency. Maybe he thought Republicans are more gullible than Democrats, that they would swallow the snake oil he peddled more readily than those of the other party. I cannot say such a thing with conviction; I only can speculate it to be the case.

Trump donned many mantles during his term in office. He was the Liar in Chief, the Demagogue in Chief, the Sore Loser in Chief, the Panderer in Chief, the Russian Appeaser in Chief … you name it, Trump fit the bill.

He did not adhere to a hard and fast philosophy on taxes. He sought to “put America first,” but then slobbered all over Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. The term “fiscal responsibility” is as foreign to Trump as anything uttered in English.

Donald Trump is a classic Republican In Name Only and yet his most fervent followers hang that label on those within the GOP who disagree with Trump’s world view. Are you kidding me?

I wish McConnell and other actual Republicans luck in trying to shuck the Trump skin. Then again, they bought into Trump’s phony rhetoric, too.

Bring senators back now, Mr. Majority Leader

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

We have 10 days to go before President Biden takes office.

Donald Trump will be gone from the White House. The House of Representatives might impeach the current president a second time, say, by Wednesday or Thursday of this week. House members will consider at least one impeachment article: incitement of insurrection, which to many folks’ view is as impeachable an offense as one can imagine.

If the House impeaches Trump, then the Senate — led at the moment by Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — would conduct a trial. However, McConnell said the Senate won’t convene until the day before Biden takes office.

Whoa! Hold on! The Senate majority leader can summon senators back to office immediately, declaring a national emergency. He can seek to suspend the rules and then fast-track the vote of senators to determine whether Trump stays in office for the remainder of his term.

I believe it is imperative for the Senate to act quickly, just as it acted to confirm Supreme Court justice after the Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death 11 days before the presidential election.

All of this presumes that Trump won’t quit, or that the Cabinet won’t invoke the Constitution’s 25th Amendment and remove him from office.

It can be done. It should be done. Majority Leader McConnell must not sit idly while Donald Trump — who incited the rioters to storm Capitol Hill this past Wednesday — to walk away from the presidency on his own terms. The riot, as if McConnell and other GOP members of Congress need reminding, put their own lives in peril had the rioters been able to storm the House and Senate while our legislators were doing their constitutional duty in ratifying Biden’s victory over Trump.

Time isn’t on the side of those who want Donald Trump to be held accountable. However, the Senate has the mechanism to move rapidly … which it must do.

POTUS-elect: better man than most

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

President-elect Biden is a far better man than I am.

Someone shoved a microphone in his face the other day to ask him to react to Sen. Mitch McConnell’s belated recognition that Biden, indeed, is the president-elect.

Biden’s response caught me by surprise. He said he had spoken with the Senate majority leader and thanked him for his congratulations … and then pledged to work closely with him on areas where the two men can find agreement.

What might my reaction be? It wouldn’t be nearly as magnanimous. For that matter, Donald Trump damn sure wouldn’t have been as gracious had he been the target of the well-chronicled suspicion that GOP politicians have leveled at the Democratic president-elect.

McConnell stood behind some phony excuse about letting the “process play out” before recognizing the obvious, which is that Joe Biden defeated Trump in the Nov. 3 election. After the Electoral College certified Biden’s win, only then did McConnell speak from the Senate floor to congratulate the president-elect.

Fiddlesticks, man!

Phenomenal replaces the routine

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

It can be argued, which I will do here, that Donald Trump’s presidential re-election loss has produced one of the most remarkable phenomena in recent memory.

That would be how a simple acknowledgment that the winner of a presidential election is the president-elect can make such news.

So it was the other day when Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell stood on the floor of the Senate and declared that his former Democratic colleague, Joe Biden, was the president-elect of the United States.

McConnell’s acknowledgment of the obvious became news all day.

Who is to blame or credit of this bizarre reaction? Donald Trump! He has sown a narrative that has taken hold among faithful GOP politicians who have signed onto the phony notion that Biden “stole” the election that Trump actually won. Think about this for just a moment.

Courts have ruled repeatedly that no such thievery occurred. Politicians who under normal circumstances would honor judicial opinions now cast aspersions on them. The Senate’s top Republican, ,McConnell, was among the politicians who refused to say publicly what he no doubt knew, which is that Trump lost and that Biden beat him like a drum.

So now we get to watch GOP politicians say — now that the Electoral College has certified the outcome — that Joe Biden is the president-elect. And the media cover it as if it’s really big news. Then again, given the tenor of the times and the suspicion that Donald Trump has created … I guess it is.

Ridiculous.

Way to go, Mitch … hah!

(AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

The temptation surfaced but it was a fleeting moment.

I was tempted to offer a “better late than never” congratulatory statement to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for finally recognizing that his former colleague, Joe Biden, is the president-elect of the United States. McConnell this morning congratulated the president-elect and said he is looking forward to working with him on his agenda.

Then the temptation floated away.

I am left now to heap more shame on the Senate majority leader simply because he did something today he could have done — he should have done — weeks ago.

McConnell knew along with the rest of us that Donald Trump’s efforts to subvert the democratic process were damaging to the republic, to the rule of law, to our very governmental foundation. Yet he remained silent … until the Electoral College cast its vote Monday to certify that President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris about to ascend to the pinnacle of power.

So, McConnell hid behind the formality of the vote until it was done and then he came forward this morning to state the obvious.

Sen. McConnell has demonstrated a disgraceful display of cowardice.

But it doesn’t matter what I think. The person whose opinion matters is President-elect Biden. Since he is a better man than many of us I am relatively certain Joe Biden is able to put the hard feelings he might harbor toward his former Senate pal aside and get to work on behalf of the nation he was elected to lead.