Sunday was the 143rd Annual St. Jerome Fancy Farm Picnic in Kentucky. This is the event where Sen. Mitch McConnell frequently makes speeches throwing shade at Democratic colleagues, all to a hometown audience. On Sunday, McConnell spoke alongside numerous other politicians to what is described by the Associated Press as a bipartisan crowd. While the AP reports that McConnell was brought up to a sustained ovation, video of the event paints a different picture.
The 81-year-old Senate minority leader came up to the podium amidst boos and jeers. He opened with a joke about the guy introducing him, and then noted, “This is my 28th Fancy Farm, and I want to assure you it’s not my last.” This statement could be in reference to his recent unsettling appearance in front of reporters where he froze mid-sentence and had to be helped back to his office.
The five-minute speech was heckled roundly by the audience with chants of “retire,” “lost the Senate,” and “shame on you.” That last sentiment could be applied to any aspect of McConnell’s career in politics. The jeering did not let up and continued unbroken for the entire five-minute speech.
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The turn against McConnell isn’t a surprise considering the disarray within the Republican Party. As election season gets into full swing, the fact that Donald Trump has added the Senate minority leader to his targets hasn’t helped either. The day before McConnell spoke at the Fancy Farm picnic, Trump told a gaggle of MAGA-ites in South Carolina that McConnell was “perhaps the worst leader in the history of our country, running the Senate.” Trump also accused McConnell of being compromised and unwilling to help Trump in his legal woes, saying, “I’m telling you … they have something on Mitch McConnell.”
And here we are now, with McConnell unable to show up to a hometown event in his classic everyman picnic cloth shirt to tell (mostly) Republicans a lot of nothing.
Enjoy it, Mitch. You earned this.
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