So now we’re to believe that McConnell cares so much about “middle of the road” politics when he eliminated the judicial filibuster—the ridiculous 60-vote requirement—in order to ram through a record number of hard-right conservative judges. You see? A normal human being might be a little embarrassed to be so blatantly hypocritical, but not Mitch. He’s lacking that part of the brain that traffics in shame and embarrassment.
But that’s not the best part about his quote.
If Republicans were headed toward another term in the majority, there would be little reason for McConnell to talk about Democratic desires to eliminate the legislative filibuster. Being in the minority, Democrats wouldn’t be in any position to change the rules.
He knows his caucus is headed into the minority, with expected losses in Arizona, Colorado, Maine, and North Carolina, and competitive races in Georgia (two of them!), Kansas, Montana, and potentially even Alaska and Texas. Meanwhile, Republicans have a single likely pickup in Alabama, which means the Democrats look good for the net-three-seat pickups they need to gain a majority with a President Joe Biden. …
Which brings us to the second admission: McConnell fully expects impeached president and traitor to our nation Donald Trump to lose. If Trump was headed toward reelection, McConnell wouldn’t give a rat’s ass whether Democrats had a filibuster or not. Trump would be available to veto anything that a Democratic Congress passed.
The only scenario in which McConnell worries about the filibuster is one in which Democrats hold both chambers of Congress and the White House. Because without the filibuster, his Republican minority is as powerless as the Republican minority in the House.
McConnell is trying to maintain power despite an expected electoral wipeout.
The filibuster is an abomination, in an institution that is already inexcusably undemocratic. By 2040, eight states will have 50% of the population of the country, and only 16% of its Senate seats. But we don’t have to look ahead 20 years to see how ridiculous it is that California, with its population of nearly 40 million, has two senators, while the Dakotas and Wyoming, with a combined population 2.2 million, has six.
In fact, there are 116 counties in the United States, across 33 states, with a larger population than Wyoming!
Thus, the Senate already preferences white, rural, older, non-representative conservative states. Getting to 50 seats is already a difficult task for Democrats, who represent the nation’s growing diverse demographics. Check this out, Trump’s 50-state approval ratings:
If that was the electoral map, that would be a Democratic 426-112 electoral romp. Those Trump-approving states have a combined population of about 25 million—or less than eight percent of the nation’s population; less than Texas (29 million) and California (39.5 million)!
And they have 38% of the Senate seats.
<8% of population.
38% of Senate seats.
And on top of that handicap, we’re supposed to need 60% of seats to get legislation passed?
Of course, McConnell quickly and unceremoniously got rid of that requirement when his Republicans couldn’t manage it, despite their institutional and geographic advantages. Democrats should toss aside what’s left of the filibuster when they take control.
And then admit D.C. and, if they vote to do so via referendum, Puerto Rico. Because we can’t fix a system this broken absent unrealistic constitutional changes, but we can at least mitigate its worst excesses.
And Mitch McConnell can take his whiny hypocritical ass to hell.