Mitch McConnell just triggered the nuclear option in unprecedented attack on federal courts

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For the past ten years, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has been ruthless and relentless in his one-man crusade to entrench conservative power by any means necessary, unwilling to let the Republican Party’s inability to win free and fair elections put any damper on the right-wing’s shamelessly corrupt and cruel agenda or any limit on the outsized power they wield in Washington.

There’s no unwritten rule too sacred to break and no hypocrisy too great for McConnell, as he made infuriatingly clear this afternoon on the Senate floor when he announced plans to change Senate rules and slash the amount of debate time for district court nominees from thirty to just two hours of floor discussion.

This means that McConnell and the rest of the Republican majority will rewrite the rules of a decidedly undemocratic institution for the express purpose of machine-gunning through the confirmations of right-wing extremist judges, flooding our judiciary with unqualified, extremely biased, and very young people into lifetime positions.

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44 more judicial nominees were advanced out of the Senate Judiciary Committee last month, on top of the 92 judges he’s already gotten confirmed so far.

For Mitch McConnell to complain about a “systematic tantrum” after losing an election is breathtaking in its disingenuous hypocrisy, considering that he swore to make President Obama a one-term president and then spent the next eight years systematically obstructing literally everything he tried to do, even selling out the right-wing dream of cutting Social Security and Medicare entitlements in order to make sure Obama had nothing that resembled a victory of any kind.

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What McConnell is doing right now is making sure that even if the Democrats do retake power in 2020, even if all the millions of hours of organizing and canvassing and voter outreach and door-knocking from determined, passionate people all over the country pay off in a government supermajority, we’ll still be unable to pass any kind of substantial legislation to address the fundamental dysfunction and appalling inequality of American economy and society without having it buried in lawsuits and slapped down by right-wing psychopaths who believe gays, women, and people of color don’t deserve any rights.

This shamelessly partisan attempt to corrupt the impartiality of our judiciary by the servants of the oligarchs should be front-page news on every paper across the country. McConnell is intent on tearing down the institutions that keep our barely-functioning democracy working as it is, and the next wave of Democrats is going to need every ounce of courage and resilience they can muster in order to navigate the minefield that he’s leaving the American people.

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Colin Taylor

Managing Editor

Colin Taylor is the managing editor of the Washington Press. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice, equality, and universal health care in America.

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