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Ta-ta, “Turtle Man.”

turtle mitch 720

“Moscow Mitch,” is the Senate majority leader’s new moniker.

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, a former Florida Republican congressman, hung the handle on Mitch McConnell for blocking a pair of bills aimed at thwarting foreign – read: Russian -- interference in next year’s elections.

Moscow Mitch called the bills “partisan legislation” – read: legislation that would make it harder for Russian dictator Vladimir Putin to help swing votes the GOP way. (McConnell is also up for reelection next year.)

The Morning Joe host nicknamed Kentucky's senior senator “Moscow Mitch” for “aiding and abetting” Putin's “ongoing attempts to subvert American democracy.”

Watch McConnell try to make “Moscow Mitch” another badge of honor bestowed on him by his detractors, be they the “liberal media,” “socialist" Democrats or a renegade ex-Republican from the Sunshine State.

Even so, watch McConnell try to make “Moscow Mitch” another badge of honor bestowed on him by his detractors, be they the “liberal media,” “socialist" Democrats or a renegade ex-Republican from the Sunshine State.

McConnell is untroubled that Donald Trump is Putin’s useful idiot for whatever reason or reasons. (One suspects that Putin’s got the goods on Trump for criminal misdeeds that would land him behind bars or that he and Putin have cut crooked deals to enrich themselves--or both.)

McConnell doesn’t care what Trump does inside or outside the law, as long as he stays president. Moscow Mitch is Trump’s ever-eager enabler-in-chief because he knows his power depends on Trump’s power.

In any event, you can’t shame the shameless, and the only title that matters to Moscow Mitch is his official one: "Majority Leader."

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“Read enough about Mitch McConnell and you come to see him as a man of pure ambition and little else,” Alex Pareene wrote in The New Republic last March.

The headlinewas a grabber: “Nihilist in chief: The banal, evil, all-destructive reign of Mitch McConnell.”

Added the author, “Regardless of your feelings about the Russia investigation, it’s not hard to imagine McConnell’s response to being told Russians were interfering in the election while a Putin-connected oligarch was shoveling money into his PAC: If they want to help us, let ’em.

Pareene acknowledged that McConnell is the “most powerful majority leader over the past decade,” while labeling him “an errand boy for both an errant billionaire class of campaign donors, and an errant billionaire president."

I can see McConnell smirking at the flunky charge, true as it is.

“I won, didn’t I?” is Trump’s standby reply to his naysayers. It’s Moscow Mitch’s, too.

McConnell is “basically just what he looks like: a man serenely unbothered by anything he’s done to get his power or anything he’s done with it, having few friends but many allies,” Pareene also wrote.

It’s might-makes-right with Moscow Mitch--King Leer and his Puppet Master, too.

“McConnell has built a GOP machine that is as immune as it can be to the ballot box, because he is smart enough to know that Republicans cannot, as currently constituted, win fair elections often enough to retain power,” Pareene also wrote.

Polls show McConnell will likely face a tough race in 2020. Nonetheless, he’s “already won,” according to Pareene. “Even with Republicans losing the House [last year], McConnell has another two years to complete his life’s work: a pipeline, sucking donor money out of the plutocracy and refining it into a judiciary that will someday declare it unconstitutional to levy property taxes on a billionaire’s climate change-adaptation bunker.”


Berry Craig