WY Senator John Barrasso Vows To ... Impeach Biden We Guess? Sure, F*ck It, Why Not!
Mitch McConnell famously declared in 2010 that the "single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president." By “we," McConnell meant other terrible Republicans who campaigned on a “stop the Kenyan socialist" platform. They obviously didn't succeed: Obama was re-elected in 2012, but voters steadily rewarded Republicans for their obstruction. They regained the House in 2010, the Senate in 2014, and the presidency in 2016.
That's probably why Wyoming Senator John Barrasso echoed McConnell's cynical objective during an event hosted by the conservative Ripon Society. Barrasso is the Republican Senate conference chair, and until recently, before she spoke heresies about Donald Trump, Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney was the House GOP conference chair. That's a lot of political power for a state with fewer residents than Portland, Oregon.
"Mitch McConnell's come under a lot of criticism for saying at one point he wanted to make sure that Barack Obama was a one-term president. I want to make Joe Biden a one-half-term president," Barrasso said, according to video that was posted Tuesday by the organization.
This isn't that shocking, considering that so many Republicans conspired after the election to make Biden a no-term president. It's also not the first time Barrasso's used the expression. When Fox News anchor John Roberts asked him last month if the 2020 election was “stolen or fought fairly," Barrasso would only concede that Biden's "in the White House and there's nothing we can do about that right now," but Republicans can make him a “half-term president" with victories in the 2022 midterms. That's not actually how the Constitution works: Biden is still president until 2024 even if Republicans control Congress, but McConnell has already served notice that a Republican Senate majority won't let Biden confirm Supreme Court justices or wipe his own ass. Of course, they'll probably try to impeach him for ... critical race theory, we guess.
Total obstruction is all they're offering voters. They're not even bothering with an agenda of their own. Barrasso claimed at his speech last week that Biden's agenda is "out of step with the American mainstream." This is a lie even if we recognize that when Republicans refer to the “American mainstream," they only mean white people. Polls show that 70 percent of Americans support Biden's infrastructure bill. That includes 61 percent of white people. This mommy blog is apparently one of few media outlets with the resources to Google shit and not just repeat GOP talking points unchallenged.
It's interesting to examine the entirety of McConnell's remarks from 2010. He said that after the 1994 midterms, when Republicans flipped the House and Senate, "the public had the impression ... Republicans overpromised and underdelivered."
We suffered from some degree of hubris and acted as if the president was irrelevant and we would roll over him. By the summer of 1995, he was already on the way to being reelected, and we were hanging on for our lives.
Democrats certainly didn't think Trump was “irrelevant" in 2019 but their priority wasn't making his life miserable. They just wanted to improve Americans' lives and would've preferred if Trump just stop with the criming. They didn't consider that a political opportunity, because they aren't sociopaths, but instead a distraction from their actual agenda. Unfortunately, with Trump still in the White House and Republicans still in control of the Senate, Democrats' best ideas could only wither and die.
It got so bad, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer started referring to the Senate as a “legislative graveyard," but McConnell relished his role as the “grim reaper" of the Democratic agenda. It's much easier to say “no" in Congress. That's why all the Boss Pelosi memes are from the day she told Trump he couldn't have his stupid WALL.
McConnell further stated in 2010:
We need to be honest with the public. This election is about them, not us. And we need to treat this election as the first step in retaking the government. We need to say to everyone on Election Day, "Those of you who helped make this a good day, you need to go out and help us finish the job."
Republicans are following the same playbook: Argue that Democrats are a threat to God, capitalism, and even Dr. Seuss. Ride the hate machine to victory and insist that you were sent to Congress to stop anything Biden proposes.
McConnell was honest about the obstruction but he couldn't resist lying about the recent past.
If President Obama does a Clintonian backflip, if he's willing to meet us halfway on some of the biggest issues, it's not inappropriate for us to do business with him.
Republicans impeached Bill Clinton for a BS BJ during his second term and tried to remove him from office. McConnell disingenuously stated, "I don't want [Obama] to fail; I want him to change." Clinton and Obama could never change enough for Republicans, and neither can Joe Biden.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."