The AWOL Senate Majority Leader, subject to a weekend of #WheresMitch outrage, wants the world to know he's aware of the "urgent priorities" the Senate is facing this week. Like passing the bill the House passed Friday night to fight the outbreak of COVID-19. The bill, negotiated between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, will provide sick leave to workers who don't have it, increase Medicaid funding, pump up unemployment insurance, and ensure food security. As the nation shuts down in response to novel coronavirus, we need that bill. Immediately. So what's so urgent for Mitch? Not this bill.
In fact, it now looks like his Senate won't take up the bill until the last half of this week because there are Republicans who want to vote against it. Let that sink in. They want to vote against it. What could have happened, what should have happened, was two senators going to the Senate floor on Saturday and passing the bill by unanimous consent. If McConnell gave a damn about the nation, he would have made that happen. He doesn't and he didn't.
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The most important thing for him was going to Kentucky over the weekend with Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh to celebrate a newly minted federal judge, Justin Walker. Not just any new judge, but possibly the most unqualified judge McConnell has shoved through, ever. One who's never tried a case, who the American Bar Association rated unqualified because he had absolutely no courtroom experience and at 37, hadn't even been out of law school the 12 years that the ABA says is the minimum experience at practicing law judges should have. The ceremony wasn't even real—Walker was sworn in and seated months ago.
The delay has given Pelosi and Mnuchin some time to make technical corrections to their package, corrections that should pass in the House later Monday where it will sit. McConnell isn't going to even consider doing anything with it when the Senate convenes late afternoon on Monday, or even on Tuesday morning, because he wants to wait until after the Senate Republican lunch on Tuesday when Mnuchin is expected to sell the package to grousing members like Wisconsin's Ron Johnson who don't want to make anything too easy for the nation's workforce.
So that's what's so "urgent" for McConnell. Business as usual.