Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is stuck between the real world equivalent of a rock and a hard place thanks to his support of Donald Trump.
He supported Trump during the belligerent businessman’s rise to power, but the new president did not return the favor. Trump has gone after McConnell time and time again for being a supposedly ineffective leader, and it goes without saying that the Kentucky Senator started out with an already slim base that’s only getting slimmer because of his support of Trump.
Trump lobbed attacks at McConnell on Twitter over the failure of GOP efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, although it’s not as though the president himself stepped in to help craft a bill that could garner enough support to pass.
With these issues in mind, McConnell doesn’t really have the political room to hold his ground on the issue of Roy Moore.
Moore is the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate down in Alabama, running to fill current U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ old seat. Last week, reports burst to the front of the national political scene that Moore sexually harassed and assaulted teenagers while working as deputy district attorney in Alabama in the 1980’s.
He’s strongly denied the allegations, but he has been unable to stem the flow of calls for him to step aside — and now Sen. McConnell has made just such a call.
McConnell made his comments “after visiting a plant in Kentucky,” according to CNBC, saying that he believes those women who have come forward with allegations against Moore of sexual harassment and assault of minors.
Former deputy district attorney Teresa Jones — who worked alongside Moore — lent credibility to the women’s accounts with comments offered on CNN.
As she put it:
‘It was common knowledge that Roy dated high school girls, everyone we knew thought it was weird. We wondered why someone his age would hang out at high school football games and the mall … but you really wouldn’t say anything to someone like that.’
Sen. McConnell’s call for Moore to step aside is the most forceful indication yet that he really is on his way out, although such does not warrant praise for the Kentucky Senator. The reports about Moore came out last week, and it’s taken him this long to directly state what we all know that yes, Moore should step aside. There is no place for someone like Moore in the U.S. Senate — or anywhere as a free man, for that matter.
Mitch McConnell, remarkably, is presently less popular than Donald Trump — and that’s saying something.
Only about 21 percent of Americans have a favorable opinion of him, while 44 percent of Americans have an unfavorable opinion of him.
Meanwhile, President Trump — who is one of the most unpopular U.S. presidents of modern times — has an approval rating greater than McConnell, with only about 39 percent of Americans currently in favor of the job he is doing.
No half baked, delayed condemnation of a pedophile is going to save McConnell’s public image — that’s all there is to it. His condemnation of Moore is too little, too late.
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