Thursday, September 12, 2019

Moscow Mitch's message to America: I don't give a damn if you are gunned down

EL PASO, TEXAS - AUGUST 05: Handmade crosses memorializing the victims of a mass shooting, which left at least 22 people dead, are lined up before being carried to a nearby makeshift memorial on August 5, 2019 in El Paso, Texas. The crosses were made by retired carpenter Greg Zanis, who has made thousands of crosses for victims of mass shootings and disasters. A 21-year-old white male shooting suspect was taken into custody in the city which sits along the U.S.-Mexico border.  (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
These deaths are now owned by Mitch McConnell.
Congress returned to work Monday after a very long August recess, one that was particularly deadly for dozens in Texas and Ohio. The mass shootings in El Paso, Odessa and Midland, and Dayton have kept gun violence at the forefront of the public awareness, made all the more fraught with the nation's children going back to school. So all eyes were on Senate Majority Leader Moscow Mitch McConnell Monday, to see how he would lead. Short answer: he won't.

In his opening floor speech, he said nothing about gun violence. He didn't even bother with empty thoughts and prayers. This is as close as he came to acknowledging that the country has been turned into a shooting gallery: "The American people know this is a highly charged political moment, but they haven't sent us here to stage pitch battles or score political points." That's right. He won't do anything to stop the mass slaughters because it's too much of a political issue.

He continued, "They elected us to make a difference for them and their family. We do that by taking care of the people's business, collaborating in good faith to complete our work and attend to the pressing matters that are before us." The people's business doesn't include protecting their very lives, apparently.

McConnell standing on the floor and talking about "collaborating in good faith" is his middle finger to the entire country. It's bald-faced trolling in the face of a deepening crisis; one that he is personally making worse.

While McConnell refused to even acknowledge the massacres, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi held a press conference to highlight it, "the No. 1 question looming over the Capitol." They pointed out, again, that there's a background check bill supported by 90% of the people ready and waiting for the Senate. "Two people in Washington can decide if the background check bill passes: Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell," Schumer said. "It is totally up to them and is on their shoulders. They can't escape that responsibility."

In reality, it's just up to McConnell. If he brought the bill to the floor and let his Republican conference vote freely, it would probably pass. He's likely the one person who could talk Trump into signing it. 

Don't forget that one of the first things Trump landed on after El Paso and Dayton (before the NRA's Wayne LaPierre got to him) was background checks. But for whatever reason, McConnell isn't going to do that. Because he really couldn't care less about preventing scores of people from needlessly dying violent deaths.

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