U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) mounted his harshest attack yet on Democrats amid increasing support for the Senate to kill the 60-vote filibuster, a relic of the Jim Crow era used to block civil rights legislation.
It did not go well for him.
Some pointed to McConnell’s infamous strutting back in 2017, after Donald Trump won the White House, and McConnell spent the next four years blocking hundreds of bills the Democratic House passed while confirming an unprecedented number of judges, including extremists the Bar Association rated as not qualified.
“Winners make policy. Losers go home,” McConnell retorted.
But now that Democrats have control of the Senate, the House, and the White House, and McConnell is still working to block Democrats’ legislation and President Joe Biden’s cabinet nominees, McConnell is playing a different game: “scorched earth.”
“Breaking Senate rules to kill the filibuster would not open up an express lane to liberal change,” he tweeted Tuesday, falsely characterizing using Senate procedures to kill or change the filibuster as “breaking the rules.”
“It would not open up an express lane for the Biden presidency to speed into the history books. The Senate would function more like a hundred-car pile-up. Nothing moving.”
He also took his “scorched earth” threat to the floor of the U.S. Senate:
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on the filibuster: “Nobody serving in this chamber can even begin to imagine what a completely scorched earth Senate would look like.” pic.twitter.com/GTDQpW9clp
— The Recount (@therecount) March 16, 2021
It’s safe to say Democrats are furious, and have neither forgotten about nor forgiven McConnell for what they say is stealing a U.S. Supreme Court seat when President Barack Obama in March of 2016 nominated Merrick Garland. It sat open for 293 days and expired when the Senate concluded its session in January 2017. McConnell refused to allow hearing, much less a confirmation vote.
Voting rights expert Ari Berman sums up the situation:
Mitch McConnell eliminated filibuster to steal 2 Supreme Court seats for Trump but wants to keep it to block HR1 & John Lewis Voting Rights Act that would expand voting access for tens of millions of Americans
— Ari Berman (@AriBerman) March 16, 2021
Former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid top aide explains what Democrats can do:
Trading this for the ability to actually pass bills like voting rights seems like an easy call. If McConnell's tactics become truly onerous, Dems can always pass further reforms to end obstruction. McConnell's goal is to make government fail, Dems' goal should be to make it work. https://t.co/Ob7uawekoM
— Adam Jentleson 🎈 (@AJentleson) March 16, 2021
This Democratic strategist offers Democrats some advice:
Senate Democrats should be furious Mitch McConnell is threatening them.
— Adam Parkhomenko (@AdamParkhomenko) March 16, 2021
And this former Obama Senior Advisor has had it with mincing words:
People who treat McConnell as some sort of sincere institutionalist are full of shit or too stupid to cover Congress
— Dan Pfeiffer (@danpfeiffer) March 16, 2021
Here’s how others are responding to McConnell’s latest power-hoarding tactic:
“Nothing moving” has literally been this guy’s strategy for the last 12 years. https://t.co/oYKN91rjTn
— Max, not Maxwell (@maxnotmaxwell) March 16, 2021
McConnell is scared. Democrats need to keep pushing. https://t.co/5dYHlOrHHR
— Max Burns (@themaxburns) March 16, 2021
strong "joker threatening gotham city" energy here https://t.co/DDZ2lLZK1r
— Oliver Willis (@owillis) March 16, 2021
So McConnell seems to be saying that if the Senate reforms the rules Democrats can't pass their popular agenda but if Republicans control the Senate, they'll pass their deeply unpopular agenda with ease? Am I missing something? https://t.co/iGUPmUZvYG
— Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) March 16, 2021
Mitch McConnell back in 2017.
"Winners make policy. Losers go home." https://t.co/LrvZpzUP5j
— Hook'em (@thelonghorns12) March 16, 2021
How's that any different from now? https://t.co/EdzsESgIMJ
— California Man (@MoonbeamEmperor) March 16, 2021
I love it when people describe the literal present as a hypothetical future. https://t.co/CszdNW0gcf
— Move Kentucky Forward (@KentuckyMove) March 16, 2021
You mean like the previous 4 years when you controlled the Senate and DID NOTHING but approve your shitty fucking judges at the last minute? https://t.co/oxdsQ9Yus6
— Bone Apple Tea (@iansmith06) March 16, 2021
McConnell is, at least, consistent. His agenda is never about serving the interests of the American people. https://t.co/pbooRwz0L7
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) March 16, 2021
— Brian J. Karem (@BrianKarem) March 16, 2021
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