Barnhart Media


Mitch McConnell, Master Strategist? HA!

Of all the nonsense coming out of Washington, DC, this is one of the most nonsensical chunks of horse pucky I have heard:

Mitch McConnell is the smartest guy around. He knows how to get things done.

This was patent nonsense even before his latest attempt to replace the ACA with a massive tax cut for the people who’ve helped make him rich took a dive into the crapper. How about a couple of examples of Mitch being the dumbest guy around:

2010, the Lame Duck Session. Obama and the Dems had just gotten their clocks cleaned, and the GOP was about to take over Congress. McConnell was going to use that power to put the black guy in his place.

Instead, Obama ate Mitch’s lunch, stole his milk money, and then pantsed him and threw the pants on a passing school bus. In exchange for extending the Bush tax cuts a few more years, here’s what Obama got:

  1. the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – leading directly to opening the military to GLBT Americans.
  2. Senate approval of the START treaty
  3. a food safety bill
  4. 9/11 First Responders Bill

Here’s what University of Virginia Center for Politics Director Larry Sabato had to say about the 2010 lame duck session:

"It's official. Like it or not, this lame-duck session is the most productive of the 15 held since WWII.”

And ABC News:

"More pieces of major legislation passed in the month of December than since March. That's when Democrats passed the landmark health reform bill and all action ground to a halt until the November elections….”

As noted in the Atlantic piece, moderate Republicans sided with Democrats because they felt it was their last chance to pass certain important legislation. A foreshadowing of 2017: McConnell, master of strategy, unable to wrangle his Senators when they want something he does not.

And once the Republicans owned the Congress, Mitch got – nothing. He was able to stop Obama from getting laws passed, but he couldn’t stop Obama from governing. Executive orders and administrative rule changes are not a great way to govern, but Obama got on with his job and let McConnell write his legacy of racist obstructionism. (I pity his grandkids who’ll have to read in their history books about what a shitty person Grandpa was. Because he is.)

McConnell’s only real “win” in his six years as Majority Obstructionist was to spit on the Constitution and block Garland from even getting hearings for the Supreme Court. Yes, McConnell delivered the GOP their Supreme Court justice, after Obama left office, but he did so at a terrible price in terms of precedent and a further deterioration of competent political governance.

Mitch McConnell is not a three-dimensional chess player level of smarts; he’s more like the five-year-old knowing that a tantrum in the aisle of the grocery store will get him his bag of M&Ms. Nothing McConnell does is smart; it’s calculated, and it’s opportunistic. He isn’t Majority Leader to help govern the nation in a sensible, rational manner. He’s Majority Leader so he can use that office and win further elections and remain Majority Leader.

His priority isn’t the common good of the nation. It’s the good of himself and his party.

The SCOTUS gambit worked out in the end, but he had nothing to do with that. That was just the bizarre luck of having the November election turn out the way it did. And we have further proof of his incompetence in his inability to find any way to repeal-and-replace ACA.

Mitch McConnell, Master Strategist? What a frickin’ joke.

T.A. Barnhart