Samantha Bee Blasts Mitch ‘Dry Rot of Democracy’ McConnell

On Wednesday’s Full Frontal, Samantha Bee shifted her focus away from President Trump — instead examining the numerous ways Mitch McConnell has become “the dry rot of Democracy.” “If our institutions seem like they’re on the verge of crumbling,” she said, “Mitch is the guy who gnawed away at the foundations.”

The comedian opened the segment by summarizing Trump’s recent ABC News interview, in which the president notoriously claimed “there’s nothing wrong with listening” to a foreign government that offered damaging information on a political opponent. Bee then zeroed in on McConnell: “While Trump is openly saying that he thinks it’s fine for foreign powers to meddle with our elections,” she said, “the Senate is making sure there’s nothing standing in the way of a good meddle.”

Since the election, members of Congress have introduced bills aimed at securing elections and preventing interference, but McConnell has refused to bring any of them up for a vote.

“Of course Mitch McConnell is blocking election security bills — just like he spent years stalling health aid for 9/11 first responders,” Bee said. “McConnell is so good at blocking things, he’s like the kidney stone of the Senate.”

Bee used the moment to trace McConnell’s career thus far, arguing the Republican got into politics not to aid his country through public service but because of a desire to be a “winner” — “finding loopholes and bending the rules to achieve victory, regardless of the damage it causes.”

McConnell started off as a moderate Republican who supported the civil rights movement and was pro-abortion rights. “But after just barely getting elected to the Senate in 1984,” Bee said, “he was worried about losing in 1990, so he pandered to the right wing.” And after taking office, he swiftly discovered his signature move: “McConnell made his mark by becoming a master of Senate procedure,” she said. “That’s how he got the idea to use the filibuster as a ‘wonderful tool to gum up the works,’ which unfortunately is also how he describes his penis.”

Bee pointed to McConnell using the filibuster to stop the DREAM Act, halt money for teachers and firefighters and block Obama’s judicial nominees. “Before Obama, all the presidents combined had had 68 of their nominees filibustered,” she said. “Under McConnell’s leadership from 2009 through 2013, Republicans filibustered 79 Obama nominees. And thanks largely to McConnell, at least 89 judgeships that were Obama’s constitutional right and duty to fill have instead been filled by President Trump. We’ll be feeling the consequences of that for decades. In 2050, when my granddaughter gets jailed by Judge Kid Rock for brewing bathtub Plan B, she will have McConnell to thank.”

His “masterpiece,” Bee snarkily observed, came after Obama nominated Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. In response, McConnell cited the non-existent tradition that we don’t fill Court vacancies during an election year –– however, in May, when asked what he’d do if a Supreme Court Justice died next year, he responded, ‘We’d fill it.’”

The one bright spot, Bee said, is that McConnell’s approval rating in his state of Kentucky is only 36 percent. “There are lots of good reasons to take back the Senate in 2020,” she said, “But one of the most satisfying is that Mitch McConnell wouldn’t be Senate Majority Leader anymore.”

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