Caricature by DonkeyHotey flic.kr/p/Ct4G4K https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell gave an interview to the Washington Post before the anticipated confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. There were a couple of noteworthy things in the interview.

In an interview with The Washington Post ahead of Kavanaugh’s near-certain confirmation on Saturday afternoon, the Kentucky Republican again underscored his confidence in Kavanaugh’s innocence while decrying the “mob” of protesters who had descended on GOP senators. McConnell also said he didn’t know he had the votes until senators were actually on the floor and voting.

“I never thought Judge Kavanaugh would withdraw,” McConnell said during the interview with The Post. “When your integrity is attacked like his was, a withdrawal was certainly no solution to that, so we were in the fight to the finish.”

I rate that sort of true and maybe not so true. I doubt seriously that McConnell was sure that Kavanaugh wouldn’t withdraw until it became obvious when he was launched onto Fox News on Monday night that the White House was prepared to fight. I also doubt that McConnell called for the vote today without being close to mathematically certain that he had the votes. If the nomination failed, then the loss would be his and there would be hell to pay in November as winnable seats slipped into the Democrat column because of lack of GOP base enthusiasm.

The second part was a lot more fun.

“It’s been a great political gift for us. The tactics have energized our base,” he said, adding: “I want to thank the mob, because they’ve done the one thing we were having trouble doing, which was energizing our base.”

This, I think, is true. The past two weeks have seen substantial GOP advances in enthusiasm and it has seen some struggling GOP candidates in Senate races move into a lead. I think the people trying to stop Kavanaugh have overplayed the #MeToo hand to the extent that they are demanding that fundamental values, like “proof,” and “presumption of innocence,” and “fair play,” have all been kicked to the curb in the service of making women a privileged class who presumably can neither lie nor be challenged.

When the books are closed on the 2018 mid-term, I think we will look back and see that this was the point where the GOP base realized the what was at risk and realized their personal stake in keeping these loonies from gaining power.

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