In recent years, many people believe that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s sole purpose in life was to obstruct President Obama.
In 2010, McConnell stated that “the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
Six years later, that goal hasn’t worked out so well for the legacies of Majority Leader and his colleagues, but they did manage to accomplish very little else in the interim.
When Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died on February 13, 2016, McConnell sent this tweet barely an hour later.
My statement on the passing of Judge Scalia. pic.twitter.com/4JSmbKWzDy
— Leader McConnell (@SenateMajLdr) February 13, 2016
This declaration set the stage for a new partisan battle and a renewed sense of purpose for the Senate Republicans. Their new mission was to prevent the president from fulfilling his constitutional obligation, but to do so would require Republicans to actively not do their jobs. And it seems that McConnell and the rest of his colleagues are up for the challenge.
So far, Senate Republicans are on track to set the record for forcing the longest Supreme Court vacancy within the past 50 years.
McConnell has promised to shut down any and all discussion of filling the vacancy, even after President Obama nominated Judge Merrick Garland, a very well qualified judge with years of deep bipartisan support.
On Saturday, McConnell spoke at an event in Fancy Farm, Kentucky, where he declared:
“One of my proudest moments” was when I told Obama “you will not fill this Supreme Court vacancy.”
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McConnell: "one of my proudest moments" was when I told Obama "you will not fill this Supreme Court vacancy" pic.twitter.com/t8uzEnJN9i
— Greg Giroux (@greggiroux) August 6, 2016
Now McConnell is wearing his disdain for the president and the Constitution like a badge of honor.
While his seat may be safe in a red state like Kentucky this fall, there are plenty of other vulnerable Republicans up for re-election who could see McConnell stripped of his power and allow the new president (whoever she is) to pick Garland or someone who will really give the GOP fits.
Featured image via Twitter