Mitch McConnell is trying to remain Senate Majority Leader. Donald Trump is trying to avoid prison. Up to now, these two goals have gone hand in hand. All they’ve had to do is keep plugging along with the corrupt agenda that their wealthy conservative donors want them to install.
But with this Supreme Court seat now open, Trump and McConnell may be finding out that their goals are more incompatible than one would think. McConnell cares more about remaining Majority Leader than he does about filling any one seat, or winning any one battle – and to remain in charge, he has to make sure that his actions don’t cost the Republicans the Senate majority. With people like Collins and Murkowski already publicly hedging their bets, McConnell may not end up with enough votes to confirm a nominee before the election.
Then there’s Donald Trump, who is currently on a path to lose the election by a fairly wide margin, and who is on track to go to prison in New York if he does lose. Trump cares only about one thing – finding a desperate last minute scheme for winning the election. He seems eager to roll the dice on nominating someone now, and hoping that doing so will make his numbers go up. It’s actually more likely to make his numbers even worse, but with the hole he’s in, he’s reduced to taking low percentage shots.
Trump is so desperate to win, he’s willing to risk losing the Senate majority just to make it happen. McConnell is so eager to keep the Senate majority, he’s willing to risk losing the presidential election just to make it happen. Considering only one of these two goals may now be possible, that’s a problem for them both.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report