'Mitch McConnell's up to no Good' Transcript:
David Bozell: All right. Really interesting piece out of the Associated Press today, because it's just another little bit of evidence that Mitch McConnell is losing his iron grip on the Senate. So Rick Scott puts out an 11-point plan. We're going to get go through each one of those points on a separate, in a separate segment. But Rick Scott puts out this 11-point plan, 11-point agenda for the Republican Senate last week. And Mitch's sort of minions in and around Washington, go into overdrive.
You may have seen a press conference in which McConnell is asked about Rick Scott's plan. This was on last Monday and Rick Scott. Well, Rick Scott had just spoken at the podium. This was about Ukraine. Turns around, makes a B-line out there. And their first question out of the box is from a reporter asking McConnell about Rick Scott's plans. And of course, McConnell doesn't want to have any plans.
McConnell doesn't want to have any agenda. McConnell is on record saying, "Ask me about the Republican agenda, if and when we win." But at that particular press conference, he's asked about Rick Scott, because it's basically, this is the way McConnell's operation works. They're very, very good at getting the Republican Congressional Press Corps to talk about Republican conflict in the way that Mitch McConnell wants these issues talked about.
So for example, Rick Scott, one of his 11 points was, Make sure every taxpayer has skin in the game. So, if you are sitting at a negative tax rate, not paying taxes, you basically get up to zero. So Mitch McConnell, the question to Mitch McConnell was right out of the shoot. What do you think about Rick Scott's plan and are Democrats correct in charging you guys with wanting to raise taxes?
And Mitch McConnell says, "No, no, no, no, no, no. Well, Rick Scott can talk for Rick Scott, but what's not going to be on the agenda is raising taxes." Rick Scott's plan does not talk about raising taxes, just to be triple clear about that. It talks about people raising their tax obligation to zero if you're negative, at least have some skin in the game. And it's a good idea that ought to be debated. McConnell then goes on to say, If Republicans are in the majority, I will be the majority leader and I will make the decisions in consultation with my members.
Because he senses a threat because Risk Scott actually has some ideas that he wants to advance. Rick Scott's from Florida, Senator from Florida is a self-made guy. Okay, he wins this, he wins the governorship and wins the Republican Senate seat defeating Bill Nelson. This was back in 2016, I believe maybe to '18, almost with no help from the Republican party, self-made business guy, self-made political success.
He likes to take risks. He likes the march to the beat of his own drummer. That's fine, but we need ideas. We need agendas thrust into the system. Particularly, in the Senate, there are a dime a dozen in the House. There's lots of those, in fact, they probably have too many in the House, but there's really no fresh ideas coming out of the Republicans in the Senate. So Scott comes out with this plan.
McConnell tries to distance the entire caucus away from Scott, and this media effort, this PR effort on behalf of McConnell's operation just continues into the Associated Press today in which he says, "Republican 'unforced errors,' threatened path to Senate control." And this piece goes on to say that if it weren't from Republican missteps, then there would be a red wave engulfing the Senate.
And it basically tries to blame Rick Scott for McConnell's failure in recruiting some decent candidates in some of these Senate races. "The Republican unforced errors threatened path to Senate control." The piece starts off,
"As the prospect of a red wave grows a series of Republican missteps, including recruiting stumbles, weak fundraising, and intense infighting is threatening the GOP's path to the Senate majority."
Look, they're breaking fundraising records week after week. So I just don't get where this weak fundraising total comes from. Maybe the AP cherry-picked a week or two, but the Senate fundraising, Republican fundraising is doing just fine, right. So that's misinformation bit number one out of this AP piece. Let's talk about what they say, recruiting stumbles.
"Arizona's Republican Governor Doug Ducey dealt his party its latest setback late last week by announcing he would not challenge Democratic Senator Mark Kelly this fall, his decision, which leaves no obvious front-runner in the crowded Republican primary disappointed Senator Republican leader, Mitch McConnell and his allies who had spent months privately encouraging Ducey to run."
So that's a whiff on McConnell's part in Arizona. "And a recent plan that would raise taxes on low income Americans and seniors." That's not true. "Released by the Republican Senate midterm chief, Florida, Senator Rick Scott is putting GOP candidates in a difficult position." Now, when they say Republican Senate midterm chief, Senator Rick Scott, remember what I said at the top.
He did not get any love or any support from the National Republican Senatorial Committee when he ran for Senate in Florida. So what did he do when he got here? He took it over. All right, now he runs NRSC. The reason why I know that this is a planted story from the Republican, from McConnell because Steven Law, who is a political peon, Steven Law runs McConnell's Super PAC.
And the fact that he's quoted in here, up and down proves that I'm right, that this is a McConnell planted story. That they can't recruit candidates because Rick Scott decided to release a plan as to what Republicans ought to do if they were to maintain the majority. This is how I know I'm right about this. I mean, it's just so frustrating reading such economically illiterate news. It's just so unbelievably frustrating.
I was at an airport. I'll tell you a funny story about some idiocy; some people being dumb. I was at an airport. I was at Reagan Airport, Thursday morning and I'm in the security line going through and there's a parallel line and a heavy set woman walks right into the parallel line. She's masked up and immediately she starts to bark at everybody around her; "Six feet, six feet. I want six feet, give me six feet."
And this guy is behind her, and now I'm not in her line, but I'm right next to her. I'm right next to her, but I'm not in her line. So I really don't have to pay any attention to what she was barking about, but it was going to be interesting to watch, to see who in front of her, would oblige her request and who behind her would oblige her request.
Now, if anyone's ever been through an airport security line, you know those where you're just, you're packed in there like sardines. And once you got people behind you, there's really nothing, you can't go anywhere. So she's barking about being six feet, six feet, six feet, give me six feet. And the guy behind her says, "Well, listen, lady, don't you know that the seats are right next to each other on the plane, like within inches of each other."
And she says, "Six feet, six feet. You're supposed to give me six feet. Don't be a jerk. Don't be a jerk." And he says, "I'm not moving. I'm not going anywhere. If you want six feet away from me, you can move up. You can find a place to move up." So she does. So she waits for the person to get a six feet ahead of her and she just inches along. And, but because karma does what karma does. She gets up to the front of the security line and she has no ID. Of course, she doesn't.
So she's fumbling through this massive purse of things, holds up everybody. She has no ID. She starts barking with the gate attendant, "Why do I need ID? Why do I need ID?" And the gate attendant said, "Look, I mean, in order to fly in American skies, you need an ID." And then she says, "I don't need an ID for anything else." Which, I mean, probably true. I mean, the way I can imagine she's living her life, she probably doesn't need an ID for anything else, nevermind that she was wearing a mask below her nose, which made no sense at all, given her stated preference of six feet of social distance.
But she was just totally unaware that the pandemic is over, totally unaware that every Governor in the country is basically relaxed all these mandates and things, and totally unaware that six feet of social distance does next to nothing. But this is why the AP can get away with writing such gibberish as would impose a modest tax increase because folks like her aren't paying attention. But then this piece just goes on to basically say, it says,
"The strategist who requested anonymity to discuss private deliberations said, many Senate Republicans had been willing to ignore what they viewed as Scott's presidential ambitions. But that changed when the Florida Senator released his latest proposal, which they considered 'an unforced error'."
I'll bet money. The strategist who requested to be anonymous is probably Steven Law, who is a strategist. And he's quoted up and down the piece. This is how these things get written. Remember, these reporters are lazy. They don't want to be searching around for strategist quotes. They don't want to be calling people. They just want the money line.
Unforced error was the money line in a piece that was a little critical of McConnell saying, Hey, you couldn't recruit the guy that you wanted. McConnell's strategist, Steven Law, who runs his Super PAC, gets quoted up and down about how he thinks the conditions are still good for a red wave, but we can't have problems like these.
And then, bam, in the bottom of the article, anonymously, people can say it was an unforced error. I'll bet money that Steven Law is the anonymous source. If you even want to call it, the anonymous strategist in that piece, I would bet money. And it's just trying to stick it to Scott. They're just trying to blame Scott for the fact that they can't recruit.
So this is just another little example of Mitch McConnell being too cute by half. And you can see, I mean, there are just two ways to read that story. You can just read it in a very conventional way. That the Republicans are having trouble recruiting candidates, or just realize that these stories are another example of how McConnell's PR machine is in desperate overdrive against who they think is a rival and a Trump ally in Rick Scott.