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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Why McConnell’s Pandering To Women May Be Good News For The Economy

Why McConnell’s Pandering To Women May Be Good News For The Economy

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) appears to be looking past his primary challenge from Tea Partier Matt Bevin toward his likely opponent in the general election, Kentucky’s Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes — and that could be good news for those who fear gridlock could lead to economic disaster this fall.

Last week McConnell’s campaign debuted “Women for Mitch” and supplied reporters with testimonials from women, including one that lauds his support for the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA):

“Mitch was the co-sponsor of the original Violence Against Women Act — and continues to advocate for stronger policies to protect women. I am proud to call him my senator.” — Angela Leet, Jefferson County

While it’s true the senator did back the original VAWA in 1991, that bill never became law. And he has not supported the actual law or any of its renewals since. He also opposes Family Leave, equal pay legislation, the Lilly Ledbetter Act, and most every reform designed to improve women’s health.

But the fact that McConnell is trying to conjure a record on women’s issues signals that his campaign trusts a Republican poll that shows the incumbent up by 40 points over Bevin. With about two-thirds of voters saying they have no opinion of the challenger, this gives McConnell’s campaign the opportunity to do what they do best: destroy an opponent’s image. They’ve apparently already landed a solid blow on the businessman, accusing him of lying about attending MIT on his LinkedIn profile.

Bevin is wealthy enough to fund his own attacks all the way to the primary, which is still months away. However, McConnell’s advantage in the polls and ability to raise funds suggests he’s set on taking on Grimes as soon as possible. The Democrat posted slight leads over the senator in two Democratic polls. The Republican poll found McConnell up by 8 percent.

McConnell appears to be benefiting from his alliance of convenience with the Paul family, designed to get him through any primary challenge. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) — who defeated McConnell’s candidate in a primary in 2010 — has endorsed the leader. Ron Paul’s grandson-in-law Jesse Benton is McConnell’s campaign manager because it will be a “big benefit for Rand in ’16.” While Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) hasn’t endorsed his leader, Texas’ junior senator isn’t likely to endorse Bevin.

However, that could change after this month, when Cruz’s plot to defund Obamacare will come to a head. The government runs out of funding on September 30. By the middle of October, Congress needs to raise the debt limit. Both houses of Congress will need to pass bills to keep the government funded and the United States solvent. In addition, they’ll need to vote on the president’s plan to intervene in Syria. Cruz, along with Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Marco Rubio (R-FL), have been arguing that any bill that funds health care reform is akin to voting for the law.

If McConnell were in a dead heat with Bevin, his ability to negotiate or even allow bills that do not please the base would be severely limited. But since his focus is now on women, who oppose a government shutdown by a large margin, it seems the leader has the room to make a deal that will anger the Tea Party, as any deal that doesn’t erase Obamacare from human history is likely to do.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via

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Copyright 2013 The National Memo
  • docb

    So we are to be surprised that a republican lies about his record. No, that is their only MO…The right has been ‘do nothing’ for 4 plus years., they have no record to run on and No plans!

  • Lovefacts

    If Bevin isn’t doing well, Grimes will have to take McConnell on sooner than she expected and expose his lies. Sadly, I fear it won’t matter to the voters. McConnell is an institution and no one can fight as dirty or tell lies about their opponent like he can. If the Democrats want to take this seat, the DNC will have to put some money in this race.

    • Chrysippus

      Instead of being revered as “an institution,” this wheezing old bag of clothes should be put into an institution–where his lying ravings can be accepted as gospel by all the other loonies in the bin.

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    McConnell is one of those pathetic good ole bois. He thinks if he keeps on insisting he is the only one who can be right, that makes his lies truth. The more he insists, the more he hopes the end result will be to turn lies into truth.

  • midway54

    Wha…wha…what? McConnell a liar? Ya gotta be jokin”.

  • LotusJoan

    As one of the leaders and architects of
    this obstructionist Congress it would be a blessing if Mitch was ready to slide
    left in order to retain his seat. I think the author, is unrealistically optimistic.
    The fact that Mitch would have others lie about his congressional record
    is nothing new and not necessarily a good sign for the future of our nation or economy. I do not think that it is a sign of a new
    more reasonable senator from KY. The state’s voters are going to have to
    accomplish that on their own. Somebody
    else in 2014.

  • [email protected]

    What the Tea Party Republicans wish to do is repeal the Twentieth Century. Return to the good old days where nobody questioned the authority of the white males who were in total control of everything. Now what do we have?? “Those others are sticking their noises into our businesses and trying to tell us what to do.” As Rush Limbaugh said that “everything went down hill when woman received the right to vote because they are so emotional, not like us who are so rational.”

    • Mikey7a

      Rational Republican is an oxymoron!