So the political dynamics of the newly Democratically controlled U.S. Senate are taking shape now, and if the Democrats have any doubt as to how they should proceed, they only need to ask themselves the simple question: What would Mitch McConnell do?
Mitch McConnell — whom I lovingly think of as Yertle McConnell — is the very same one who proclaimed, when he was Senate majority leader, that then-President Barack Obama couldn’t nominate a U.S. Supreme Court justice even though he’d had almost a full year of his presidency left (Yertle’s publicly stated “reason” was that the American people should be able to weigh in at the next presidential election before the high court’s vacancy should be filled) — but then, of course, he fast-tracked a right-wing nutjob to the U.S. Supreme Court, getting her on the court only one week before the 2020 presidential election.
Clearly, Yertle is not someone who at all can be trusted; he’s as trustworthy as is Lucy with the football. He has demonstrated his moral turpitude and his incredibly poor character (which includes, of course, treason) repeatedly.
So, true to form, now that Yertle has been defanged, he’s doing his best to keep as much power as he can, even though Democrat Chuck Schumer now is the Senate majority leader. (I love saying it: Elections. Have. Consequences.)
This is from Politico today:
Senate Democrats are signaling they will reject an effort by Mitch McConnell to protect the legislative filibuster as part of a deal to run a 50-50 Senate, saying they have little interest in bowing to his demands just hours into their new Senate majority.
McConnell has publicly and privately pressed Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to work to keep the 60-vote threshold on most legislation as part of their power-sharing agreement. Democrats have no plans to gut the filibuster further, but argue it would be a mistake to take one of their tools off the table just as they’re about to govern. …
I agree; it would be a huge fucking mistake to do that.
What would Yertle do if the Senate were 50-50 in the Repugnicans’ favor?
You fucking know that he’d gladly dispense with the fucking filibuster. (The anti-democratic, minority-rule filibuster is not in the U.S. Constitution, but is in the Senate rules, and a simple majority of the Senate — which the Democrats now have — can change the Senate rules.)
This is simple: It’s rare that the Democrats control the White House and both houses of Congress all at the same time. The last time that they did so was in 2009 and in 2010, and then-President Obama fucking blew it by arrogantly, pridefully apparently believing that he could sing “Kumbaya” with the traitors (that is, the Repugnicans) in Congress. No. You cannot negotiate with terrorists.
That grave political mistake early in Obama’s presidency meant that the Repugnicans recaptured the House in the November 2010 mid-term elections, and held it for the rest of Obama’s presidency, dooming any progressive agenda that he might have wanted to push. (Although, to be fair, Obama never apparently had much interest in pushing a progressive agenda at all; I’ll always think of him as having been a caretaker in chief, at best.)
President Joe Biden might, just might, surprise us, and actually spend the political capital that he has, instead of utterly squandering it, as Obama did.
What happens early on — right now — I think, is going to set the course for the next several years.
If Biden shows some fucking spine and actually pushes through a progressive agenda (yes, his Day-One executive orders look promising) — if Biden, Schumer, et. al. demonstrate to the American people that they aren’t afraid of their own fucking shadows for the next two years, and are willing to do what’s best for the American people for fucking once instead of what’s in the best intere$t$ of the fucking corporations and the fucking plutocrats — then I can see the Democrats expanding their majorities in both the House and the Senate in 2022, and, of course, keeping the White House after the 2024 presidential election.
P.S. I didn’t make it clear, so let me do so now: I believe that the filibuster should go. Requiring 60 votes for legislation to pass the Senate is beyond bullshit.
The filibuster and the Electoral College belong in the Dumpster of U.S. history, along with the Dumpster of U.S. history’s latest addition, “President” Pussygrabber, one of the worst “presidents” we’ve ever had if not the worst “president” we’ve ever had.