The Destructive Impact Of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell Needs To End In Georgia Senate Runoffs!

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is the most powerful Republican in Congress, having a leadership position for 18 years, as Senate Majority Whip from 2003-2007; Senate Minority Leader from 2007-2015, and Senate Majority Leader from 2015-2021, with his future as either Majority Leader or Minority Leader depending on the two Georgia Senate runoffs taking place next week.

McConnell has been much vilified for his obstructionism tactics under President Barack Obama, and his refusal to allow hearings for Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland in 2016. Also, he focused on adding over 200 judges to the federal judiciary, including three Supreme Court nominees, under President Donald Trump.

McConnell will be 79 in February 2021, nine months older than Joe Biden, and the two men have worked together over the years in the Senate and the Vice Presidency years of Biden, so it is hoped there might be some cooperation and bipartisanship, but one cannot count on that.

And the Georgia Senate runoff elections next week will decide the exact role of McConnell.

McConnell has the distinction of being the longest serving US Senator in Kentucky history; and the longest serving leader of Senate Republicans in US History, and now starting his seventh term.

So within the next few months, McConnell will go from being presently 23rd longest serving Senator in American history to being 16th longest, as seven Senators ahead of him include not only Joe Biden, but also others he will pass between January 3 and the end of March. And if he stays in the Senate until the end of his seventh term in January 2027, just less than two months short of age 85, he will have passed all but six Senators, or possibly seven, if Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa wins reelection in 2022 at the age of 89.

While in many ways McConnell is despicable and horrendous, his longevity is amazing, and he will go down in history as a major “player” in the history of the US Senate and the Republican Party!

C Span 2017 Presidential Survey: Barack Obama Is 12th, Highest Ranking In Any Such Poll For Newly Retired President Since Ronald Reagan

The C Span 2017 Presidential Survey of 91 scholars of the American Presidency did true justice by naming Barack Obama the 12th Greatest President.

This is the highest first ranking of a newly retired President since Ronald Reagan in 1989, before there were C Span polls, but instead other polls existed, although not as organized and prestigious as C Span has now done three times–in 2000, 2009, and now 2017.

Obama was only 15 points behind Woodrow Wilson, and only 18 points behind Lyndon B. Johnson, often seen as the third and second, respectively, most accomplished Democratic President, particularly in domestic policy. And Obama was only 23 points behind Ronald Reagan, the conservative icon.

At the same time, Obama is 23 points ahead of James Monroe of the “Era of Good Feelings”; 31 points ahead of James K. Polk, who acquired so much territory in one term of office; and 35 points ahead of his major living competition, Bill Clinton.

Based on the stellar performance of Obama in the first competition, it seems likely he will move up to the top ten the next time this poll is done, or certainly at the least pass Wilson as a minimum, an interesting thought considering Wilson’s sad racial prejudices, despite his being the only earned Ph. D. President.

If Obama had been fortunate enough to have a Democratic Congress regularly, as Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson had in their times, his ranking on “Relations with Congress”, rated 39th, would have been much higher, and he would already be in the Top Ten Presidents. Only Franklin Pierce, John Tyler, James Buchanan, and Andrew Johnson rank lower, which seems rather ridiculous in retrospect.

As it is, Obama rated 3rd in “Pursued Equal Justice For All”; 7th in “Moral Authority”;, 8th in “Economic Management”; 10th In “Public Persuasion”; 12th in “Vision:Setting An Agenda”; 15th in “Crisis Leadership” and “Performance Within Context of Time”; and 19th in “Administrative Skills”. In “International Relations”, much of it still unresolved on effect, Obama ranked 24th.

It seems clear that Obama will look even better in the long run, despite the racism, hatred, prejudice, and total obstructionism of the Republican Party and its leadership, which will pay for it in historical memory in the long haul, when these kinds of traits do not improve one’s historical standing!

Final Reflections As America Votes In Midterm Elections Of 2014

As America votes today in the Midterm Elections of 2014, polls indicate that the Republican Party will win control of the US Senate and will gain seats in the House.

As far as Governorships are concerned, the indications are that the Democrats are likely to gain a few seats, and defeat some Tea Party leaders.

To a great extent, this election is more negative–that is, throw out the rascals—as there is great disillusionment with government and with politicians.

Not that this is something new, as many Americans are ignorant about politics, and just think change for its own sake is good, which is often NOT the case!

The reality is that midterm elections generally favor the opposing party to whoever is President. But with the strange situation of a split Congress, rare in American history, it becomes much more complicated.

If the Democrats do, indeed, lose the Senate, which this blogger does not believe will happen, it will be seen as a defeat, which it would be, but it is a forerunner of a certain regaining of the Senate majority two years hence, as two thirds of the seats up in 2016 are Republicans, many of them winners in the major GOP gain in the midterm election of the first Obama term.

That fact, of two thirds of the 2016 seats being Republican, and the strong likelihood, that a Democrat will be heavily favored in the Electoral College in 2016 and beyond, as things stand right now, we can expect a massive gain of seats by Democrats then, hitting the high 50s, if not the magical 60 to overcome all filibusters.

The Republicans might win the majority tonight, but they will then have the onus of producing a record of accomplishment over the next two years to give them a chance to keep control of the Senate in 2016.

Based on their negativism and obstructionism for the past six years, that scenario is highly unlikely.

Instead, one can expect the Tea Party whackos on the right, led by Ted Cruz in the Senate, to do everything to prevent any progress, any action, any accomplishments, that they will be able to use in 2016 for Senate races and to support the GOP candidate for President.

Expect instead blockage of Presidential appointments to the cabinet and the courts; loads of phony investigations that will get attention, but accomplish nothing, except to demonstrate that the GOP are a group of showboats with no substance; and probably a move to impeach and put President Obama on trial, to besmirch his record, which will cause further stalemate and bitterness, and prevent any kind of positive action on so many signature issues.

And the GOP, continuing its racism, nativism, misogyny, and homophobia, will therefore self destruct and put themselves into the grave of history, instead of being a party that offers a bright future to more than just the elite one or two percent of whites who vote their interests, while middle and lower class whites vote against their interests because they are drawn to the disgraceful appeals mentioned above, even while many claim to be “religious”, but promote discrimination against minorities, immigrants, women, and gays and lesbians!

Do Not Believe Polls Which Predict GOP Senate Majority!

So many polls are now predicting that the Republican Party will win control of the US Senate. But polls have been proved wrong before, and the Democrats should not run scared, just run aggressively against the Do Nothing Republicans, similar to what Harry Truman did in 1948!

The Republican Party is wrong on immigration reform; is wrong on the right of workers; is wrong on the treatment of women at work and in their private lives; is wrong on the environment and climate change; is wrong on the need for gun regulation; is wrong on the use of the race card; is wrong on its refusal to promote infrastructure spending; is wrong on its decision to oppose more expenditures on veterans; is wrong in its opposition to ObamaCare; is wrong in its attacks on Social Security and Medicare; is wrong in its efforts to deny voting rights; is wrong in its advocacy of wars everywhere, rather than pursuing diplomacy and peace; is wrong in their anti intellectual, anti science agenda; is wrong in its promotion of theocracy, rather than separation of church and state; and is wrong in its planned strategy to obstruct all judicial and executive nominations and therefore to cripple operation of the courts and government agencies.

The Democrats are likely to keep the following Senators–Mark Pryor of Arkansas; Mary Landrieu of Louisiana; Kay Hagan of North Carolina; Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire; Mark Warner of Virginia; and Mark Begich of Alaska.

They have a good chance of defeating Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, with their nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes; win the open Senate seat in Georgia with Michelle Nunn; win the open Senate seat in Iowa with Bruce Braley; win the open Senate seat in Michigan with Gary Peters; and an even chance to win the open West Virginia seat with Natalie Tennant over Republican Shelley Moore Capito.

The only seats seen likely to switch from D to R are: South Dakota and Montana; while the Democrats have a good shot at winning Kentucky and Georgia. With West Virginia possibly going Republican with Capito, and Maine having a chance that Republican Susan Collins loses to Democrat Shanna Bellows, if such happens, it is no gain by the Republicans.

The best prediction is that the Republicans MIGHT gain two seats, falling four states short of the six needed to make Mitch McConnell Majority Leader, with him likely to lose to Grimes in Kentucky, in any case.

The worst case scenario for the Democrats is the loss of South Dakota and Montana; and the loss of West Virginia, therefore meaning a Republican gain of three seats!

And in 2016, with two thirds of the seats being Republicans, the Democrats are sure, in an election where their Democratic Presidential nominee will be heavily favored, to win a large number of additional seats, nearing up to 60 from a possible low of 52 in 2014!

Bill Clinton PBS Documentary Reminds Us Of What We Wished To Forget: The Depth Of Republican And Conservative Venom Of Twenty Years Ago Which Remains Today!

Last night, and continuing tonight, PBS is presenting another part of its great AMERICAN EXPERIENCE series on the Presidency, finally doing a four hour analysis of Bill Clinton, the man and the President.

As always, PBS does an excellent job, and so far, it brings back memories of the times of the 42nd President of the United States, the good and the bad, the ups and the downs, and the faces and memories that many of the American people would like to forget–the ugliness and nastiness of the right wing, led by Newt Gingrich, Rush Limbaugh, and even the mean Bob Dole and others, who set out to destroy the Presidency of Bill Clinton, failed in many ways, but crippled his ability to get things done, with him assisting them by his reckless personal behavior.

We have seen a sanitizing and whitewash of Bill Clinton, trying to idealize how great his times were. While the economy did soar, the partisanship on every bill reminds us very much of the times of Barack Obama, and actually, in many ways, the times of Jimmy Carter as well, in the late 1970s.

The idea that bipartisanship disappeared suddenly with the ascension of Barack Obama is refuted by the reality that conservatives and Republicans are really no different than they were under Carter and Clinton. It is just that with the new media and internet potential, much greater than under Carter and Clinton, the vicious attacks and obstructionism can be ever the greater.

It is amazing how human beings look back and glorify and romanticize the past, trying to forget the evil, divisive, obstructive behavior of those in opposition. But the difficult times we are going through now are really just more of the same, and the only answer is, unfortunately, that liberals and progressives must be as aggressive and activist in opposing the right wing media and the Republican Party, as they are truly the enemy of making America a better place for those who are not fortunate enough to have the power and wealth of the elite in our society.

If we act gentlemanly and ladylike, the result will be defeat and retreat. If we are going to see change and reform to better the vast majority of the American people, we will have to use, sadly, the tactics used by the other side.

This disturbs those who want a truce and a centrist response, but that will only help the right wing to accomplish its goals which are a danger to the American future!

The Republican Party Again Doing What They Are Best At: Self Destruction!

The Republican Party has suicidal tendencies since the years of the Great Depression.

When the Great Depression began in 1929, the party in Congress refused to abandon laissez faire economics, and some even fought President Herbert Hoover’s attempt to provide some public works projects and federal aid through the Reconstruction Finance Corporation.

During the New Deal years of Franklin D. Roosevelt, the party stood in the way of reform and change and continued to decline.

As World War II came on, most Republicans were isolationists who failed to see the threat of Fascism and Nazism.

As World War II ended, Republicans set out to to weaken labor unions and set back the New Deal, and after two brief years in control of Congress in 1947-1948, they lost control and saw Harry Truman stage an upset victory in the Presidential campaign.

The party pursued the Joseph McCarthy anti communist agenda in the late 1940s and early 1950s, undermining America’s effort in the Korean War, but with a popular World War II general, Dwight D. Eisenhower, they were given another chance in 1952, and won back control of Congress, but with their conservative agenda, lost control again after two years.

From that point on, the party failed to gain control of Congress for 40 years in the House, and 26 in the Senate, and after six years of a divided Congress under Ronald Reagan, lost the Senate again in 1986 and for the next eight years.

Despite Eisenhower’s personal popularity, it did not transform into party control after two years, and while Richard Nixon won over a divided Democratic Party in 1968, he could not translate his victory into a Republican majority, and Watergate damaged any hope again of a soon to occur change in party loyalties and success.

Ronald Reagan managed a divided Congress with Republican control of the Senate for six years, but again it did not change party loyalties and success in the long run, and the party was bitterly divided during the administration of George H. W. Bush, with Pat Buchanan helping to divide the party and lead to the defeat of Bush in 1992.

Then in 1994, the Republicans gained control of Congress for the next twelve years, but Bill Clinton, despite personal problems leading to impeachment, was able to control much of the political agenda.

After the Republicans won the battle over Florida’s electoral votes with George W. Bush in 2000, it seemed as if finally they had become the majority party, but September 11, two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the economic collapse of 2008, took away any gains it seemed that the party had made.

While they won the House of Representatives in 2010, the emergence of the Tea Party Movement has now destroyed any chance of Republican success, as again they are seen as obstructionist in so many ways, and public opinion polls still see the party as to blame much more for the economic recession we are suffering through, rather than to hold Barack Obama accountable.

With an image of negativism, concern only for the rich and powerful special interests, isolationism, corruption, and obstructionism, the Republican Party is again in the process of committing political suicide, and relegating itself to minority status in American politics!