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Mitch McConnell’s big bluff

With much of the drama of the Trump administration now out of the picture, news networks seeing their ratings plummet are desperate to try and pick up the slack however they can. They’re either trying to revive Donald Trump somehow and make him out to be a serious threat that can pop back to life at any given moment, or they’re convincing us that the negotiations of President Biden’s legislation are on the verge of ruin, and making Mitch McConnell out to be an evil genius who can somehow still get his way on everything, despite the fact that he mostly holds a symbolic role in senate leadership.

In fact, part of Mitch McConnell’s power is derived from people who not only trust him to do the evil thing – but those who believe he is capable of getting whatever he wants by willing it into being. The key, however, is to not take McConnell at his word until the moment comes. As soon as Chuck Schumer proposed ending the filibuster on the debt limit, McConnell caved and caved big – rather than bringing about the economic ruin he could have by forcing the country to default on its debt.

While there’s talk of the Democrats blinking when having to choose between painful options in a major deal – we’re only beginning to see how badly the bluff was called on Republicans when it came to the debt ceiling. Not only did McConnell cave as he had to – but he provided Democrats with a road map for how to keep the same thing from happening again in December when it comes to government funding: leaving the determination to lift the debt ceiling up to the Secretary of the Treasury – and Nancy Pelosi made clear it was Mitch’s idea to do so at her press conference. Republicans have not only threatened to hold the economy ransom to block legislation that can improve countless lives, they’ve also failed at it pretty spectacularly. Let’s keep these losers out of power for the next decade.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene
(Associated Press)

The sentiment Dinah Washington conveyed in “What a Difference a Day Makes” has been reconfigured by the GOP, whose rendering is now “What a Difference a Trump Defeat Makes.”

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene’s (R-Ga.) copycatting of former President Trump’s pathologies appears to be imperiling her. (“The GOP’s civil war is just beginning, and the fighting will get worse before it gets better,” Feb. 3)

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called Greene’s lies a cancer on the party. What? That’s the greatest acting job since O.J. Simpson tried to pull black gloves over his hands in front of a jury.

McConnell derides a Trump acolyte, but he was complicit and calculating as Trump exalted white supremacy and engaged in rampant conspiracy blathering as president.

It’s amazing: McConnell gags on a gnat like Greene, but swallows a camel like Trump.

It’s clear that the Republican Party has evolved into a new entity, as exemplified by Greene’s ravings.

For clarity’s sake, perhaps the GOP should be renamed the “Q-lican Party.” Even better, I suggest the “Q-lings,” which would appropriately evoke Vidkun Quisling, the Norwegian collaborator who destroyed his own country’s democracy by aligning himself with the Nazis.

Quisling also kissed up to the strongman proponent of his era’s big lie, prior to America’s recent experience with its own.

Michael Jenning, Van Nuys


To the editor: My husband is a retired psychologist who for many years administered the required psychological tests for entrance to the police academy for local departments. Tests included the 16 personality factors assessment, the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory and a personal interview.

I am beginning to think the same should be required for those running for office.

Kay Zoltan, San Clemente


To the editor: Greene and her ilk are pro-life, pro-gun and, for some people, pro-death. The contradictions are mind-boggling.

Jana K. Shaker, Riverside

With his growing unpopularity, mounting difficulty with getting re-elected and speculation about his declining health, Donald Trump’s demented antics are dominating the news cycle.

Even attempts from his allies to prop him up haven’t exactly been going well, as they betray the fact that Trump has nothing to offer but the usual bluster and gloating about things that are usually non-existent. Trump isn’t the only Republican, however, who is clearly rattled by his prospects of re-election in November.

On Tuesday, Mitch McConnell decided to go on record with the rattled statement: “I think the American people should know what it means if the Senate shifts control.” He went on to discuss a nightmare scenario where Democrats in charge of the Senate kill the filibuster, hoping to scare Republican voters into supporting their candidates for re-election across the board. This would probably be a good thing in the eyes of most Democrats, as it would mean the end of GOP obstruction and a real possibility of putting the plans of a Biden administration in motion from the beginning. For McConnell to even entertain this scenario, it must mean that things aren’t looking as bright as he had hoped.

But McConnell didn’t stop there. He went on to warn voters that Washington, DC could soon be granted statehood, making it inevitable that the chamber will have two new Democratic senators in the not far future – a scenario that no Democratic candidate is talking about right now. He knows that his voters are much more receptive to fear than we are – and that he’s running out of excuses to defend his own long record of destroying democracy in Washington. The good news is that there’s more of us than there are of them – and it’s the surest sign yet that your efforts to get out the vote are paying off. Let’s keep at it and vote Democratic across the board by November 3.

Even as Donald Trump continues to demand all the credit for his disastrously negligent handling of the coronavirus crisis, it’s worth remembering that the entire Republican Senate is just as complicit.

Not only did they “acquit” him in his impeachment trial when they knew he was guilty, they tried to turn the relief bill into a con game.

This evil effort was led by Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Now his 2020 Democratic challenger Amy McGrath is taking it to him for having corruptly and lazily dragged out the relief bill:

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