Tag Archives: Mitch McConnell

McConnell, the Senate, and the approval of Trump’s judge picks

Link here. While there is more than enough reasons for conservatives to dislike Mitch McConnell, this detailed article shows that when it comes to Trump’s judicial appointments, McConnell’s track record is mostly good, if a bit slow.

Also, make sure you check out the poll numbers for Senator Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania) provided at the link. It seems it will be very hard for Casey to win come 2018.

Update: The office of Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) now contradicts McConnell, saying Grassley will decide on whether to kill the blue slip rule that allows one Democratic senator to filibuster any judicial nominee. And he hasn’t decided on whether he’ll do it.

Furthermore, this story says that the first link above is wrong, and that McConnell’s office says he still supports the blue slip veto rule.

It appears that the skepticism of some of my readers is justified.


Republican leadership pushes Democrat-approved budget deal

Betrayal: Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) has finally released the language of the next short term continuing resolution that would fund the federal government through December 9, 2016, and it appears it was written by the Democratic leadership in the Senate.

As far as conservative priorities go, the bill is a failure. Among its many obvious flaws, it funds the government through Dec. 9—setting up a lame-duck session of Congress. In the lame-duck session, which occurs after the election but before new lawmakers are sworn in, unaccountable legislators are likely to pass a bevy of backroom deals, to the detriment of representative democracy (and, we can assume, to the wallets of the taxpayer).

Even though it only funds the government for a scant 69 days, the McConnell continuing resolution manages to do it at the bloated Boehner-Obama spending levels that were jammed down the throats of conservatives in 2015. In doing so, the continuing resolution sets up yet another spending cliff that will spawn a false panic in the lame-duck session, and lay the groundwork for more “must-pass” terrible deals. In other words, in December, lawmakers will once more have to pass yet another spending bill in order to ensure the government continues normal operations.

There’s more. Read it all. The bottom line is that McConnell has forged a deal that allows Democrats to gloat and Republican conservatives to tear their hair out in horror. No wonder outsiders like Trump and Cruz did so well in the primary season, and why Trump is now their Presidential candidate. The Republican leadership, which still doesn’t comprehend why this happened, also has no idea why the public gave them strong House and Senate majorities in 2010 and 2014. Maybe they don’t care and simply want to cash in quickly even if it destroys the country. Either way, they continue to betray the very people that voted them into power.


Mitch McConnell makes a fool of himself

The leader of Republican failure, Senate leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), today had the nerve to say that Congress’s inability to block Obama’s Iran deal was still a victory because they “won the argument with the American people.”

He really does think Americans are stupid. Under the leadership of McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Congress two months ago wrote and passed the Corker-Cardin bill to allow the Iran deal to be passed with only a one-third minority approval from both houses of Congress, instead of the constitutionally required two-thirds majority in the Senate. In other words, this corrupt Republican leadership stacked the deck in favor of Obama and the deal in order to make it easy to pass.

He now has the chutzpah to call this a victory because the debate about the bill caused the American people to oppose it!? The American people always opposed this deal, or any deal that would funnel billions of dollars to this terrorist regime and allow them to build nuclear weapons. What he and Boehner needed to do was to oppose this deal unequivocally, using the power the constitution gave them to block it. Instead, they manipulated the vote to get it passed, and then make believe they opposed it all along.

And McConnell said this on September 11th of all days!

These guys have got to go. They do not represent the Republican Party, or the conservative movement. Instead, they are quislings and fifth columnists, working to sabotage the will of the American public, which voted overwhelmingly for Republicans and a conservative agenda in the last election.


Cruz calls McConnell a liar in the Senate

Most interesting: Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) today called Senate Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) a liar in a speech on the Senate floor.

“We had a Senate Republican lunch where I stood up and I asked the majority leader very directly, what was the deal that was just cut on [trade legislation], and was there a deal for the Export-Import Bank? It was a direct question. I asked the majority leader in front of all the Republican senators. The majority leader was visibly angry with me that I would ask such a question, and the majority leader looked at me and said, “There is no deal, there is no deal, there is no deal.”

“Like Saint Peter, he repeated it three times,” Cruz added.

[Cruz also said,] “What we just saw today was an absolute demonstration that not only what he told every Republican senator, but what he told the press over and over and over again, was a simple lie,” Cruz said Friday morning. “We know now that when the majority leader looks us in the eyes and makes an explicit commitment, that he is willing to say things that he knows are false. That has consequences for how this body operates.”

I have embedded video of this speech below the fold.

The increasing public anger expressed by Cruz here against the Republican leadership is a sign of a growing power struggle within that party. About 20% to 30% of the Republican Party feels more loyalty to the Democrats and the Washington power structure than they do to the conservative voters that have supported that party. Unfortunately, it appears that this small minority in the Republican party is presently in charge.

Should the conservative majority ever unify to dump their liberal leadership, there is the risk that many of these Republican leaders will then abandon the party and join the Democrats. The Democrats will then likely regain control of Congress, but if so, they will at least be then fighting an opponent that is unified in support of conservative principles, rather than a party run by two-faced leaders who campaign as conservatives and, having won their elections, immediately team up with the Democrats to block any conservative reform.

It is also possible that these fake conservatives, once kicked out of the leadership, will meekly join the conservative majority, knowing that to join the Democrats will likely get most of them tossed from office at the next election.

Either way, the heavens are beginning to align in favor of a major power shift within the Republican Party. Stay tuned.
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Ted Cruz outlines why he now opposes fast track trade

In an op-ed Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has outlined why he will now vote against giving President Obama fast track trade authority.

Why does Republican Leadership always give in to the Democrats? Why does Leadership always disregard the promises made to the conservative grassroots?

Enough is enough. I cannot vote for TPA unless McConnell and Boehner both commit publicly to allow the Ex-Im Bank to expire—and stay expired. And, Congress must also pass the Cruz-Sessions amendments to TPA to ensure that no trade agreement can try to back-door changes to our immigration laws. Otherwise, I will have no choice but to vote no.

Combine this with the increased public dissatisfaction by House conservatives of their leadership suggests to me that unless the leadership changes its political methods, one of two things could soon happen: Either the Republican Party will oust its leaders in the Senate and House and install people more allied with the party’s conservative base, or the Republican Party will split, with its more moderate members moving to the Democratic Party (which God knows needs some moderation) while the rest form a real conservative party.

Meanwhile, the revised fast track trade bill that the House passed last week was approved today by the Senate 60-37 and will now go to Obama for signature.


Patriot Act renewal fails in Senate

A victory for freedom: Due largely to the effort of Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky), the Senate failed on Friday to pass even a one day extension of the Patriot Act.

The failure was a major defeat for Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), who had pushed for a full renewal that kept in place all of the government’s spying programs created under the law.

I would not be hopeful, however, that we have seen the end of this unconstitutional law. I fully expect the Senate to agree on Monday to the House bill, which puts restrictions on the spying but still keeps many of the Patriot Act’s intrusive features.

More on this political battle here.


Patriot Act snooping prevented no terrorism

Even as Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) fights to save the snooping authorized under the Patriot Act, the FBI has admitted that no terrorism cases at all were solved using that information.

So, what use would the government possibly want with such private information? Could it be that it could eventually have some political uses instead, useful for squelching any grassroots opposition?

Nah, our government would never do such a thing. Why, we only have to look at the IRS as proof!


Obama threatens veto of House bill to limit EPA use of unpublished data

Here we go again: The House is about to vote on a Republican bill to require EPA to use only publicly available data.

The bills, introduced by a mostly Republican cast of sponsors in both the House and the Senate, would require that EPA use only publicly available, reproducible data in writing regulations and seek to remake the membership and procedures of the agency’s science advisory panels. Supporters, including industry groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, argue that the legislation would improve the transparency and soundness of how EPA uses science, making regulations less costly and more effective.

Opponents, however, are calling the bills wolves in sheep’s clothing. “I cannot support legislation that makes it easier for industry to implement their destructive playbook, because risking the health of the American people is not a game that I’m willing to play,” said Representative Paul Tonko (D–NY) at a 25 February committee meeting on the bills.

The White House has issued statements saying Obama will veto the bill. How hard to do you think John Boehner and Mitch McConnell will fight for this legislation?


Why conservatives should have no regrets dumping Mitch McConnell as the Republican leader in the Senate.

Why conservatives should have no regrets dumping Mitch McConnell as the Republican leader in the Senate.

I have had very mixed feelings about McConnell, and was unsure about whether the campaign to get rid of him made sense, until I read this article. The author is devastating, very effectively noting that even though McConnell has generally been very conservative in his votes as a senator, as a leader he has routinely supported the election of RINOs over conservatives.

As the man who helps steer lobbyist dollars to get candidates elected, you all think McConnell is a solid conservative. [Then] why is he steering dollars and support to men like Charlie Crist, Arlen Specter, Trey Grayson, David Dewhurst, and Bob Bennett? McConnell may be voting the way you all want on the votes that matter to you, but he is clearly and indisputably working to get other men elected whose votes you’d despise in states where more conservative challengers could easily win and have won.

Fortunately, all of McConnell’s candidates above eventually lost, and we got instead Marco Rubio, Pat Toomey, Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, and Mike Lee, names that have very effectively changed the political landscape by tilting it in a conservative direction. In other cases, however, McConnell’s candidates won, and thus we have guys like Jeff Flake, a Republican in name only, producing a profound lack of unity in the Republican party.

Getting rid of McConnell would tilt that landscape even more so in a conservative direction, and might finally give the Republicans the balls to really fight this fight instead of squabbling among themselves.


The Senate budget deal that the House will vote on today includes some really nice pork.

The Senate budget deal that the House will vote on today includes some really nice pork.

The bill includes extra funds to fix flooded roads in Colorado, a $3 million appropriation for a civil liberties oversight board and a one-time payment to the widow of Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), who died over the summer. It also includes a more than $2 billion increase in funding for construction on the lower Ohio River in Illinois and Kentucky. Current law authorizes $775 million in spending for related projects, and the bill increases it to $2.918 billion.

The last appears to be a kickback to Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) to get him to buy into this crap.

The bill also has this crap:

The legislation broadly re-opens the government through Jan. 15, and extends the ability of the government to borrow money through Feb. 7. It does so by allowing President Obama to waive the debt ceiling, a move that can be overridden by a resolution of disapproval by Congress that Obama could still veto. [emphasis mine]

In other words, Congress is now ceding this budgetary responsibility and power to the President, who will then rule by decree.

Update: The bill passed both houses of Congress and has now been signed by the President. Note that the only opposition came from Republicans, but even here the opposition was a minority. The Democrats strongly endorsed this bill, and for good reason. It gives them (and the Republicans who supported it) lots of pork and greater power for Obama. Americans meanwhile are screwed. The day of reckoning still looms.