It has always been about power, not principle.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) just made that abundantly clear in a statement that he issued this morning in a rare Republican attack on the big business hand that feeds him and the other members of his caucus.
Senator McConnell — who has in the past reveled in the personhood bestowed upon corporations by the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision that opened the spigot for a flood of dark money into GOP campaign coffers — suddenly has a problem with corporations exercising their First Amendment rights when it comes to arguing against the voter suppression laws that Republicans across the country are drafting and passing in order to retain their hold on power through anti-democratic means.
With companies like Delta Airlines, Coca-Cola, and Major League Baseball releasing forceful statements condemning the recently passed Georgia law implementing new voting regulations and with Dow, HP, Salesforce, Under Armour, ViacomCBS, Estée Lauder, and others expressing outrage over similarly restrictive laws being considered in Texas and other states, McConnell finds himself in the unaccustomed position of harshly criticizing his usual patrons for their wholesale acceptance of what he calls “absurd disinformation” about the voting laws his state-level GOP brethren are railroading through their legislatures.
Our private sector must stop taking cues from the Outrage-Industrial Complex. Americans do not need or want big business to amplify disinformation or react to every manufactured controversy with frantic left-wing signaling. My full statement: https://t.co/3Ck3qW4Mbe
— Leader McConnell (@LeaderMcConnell) April 5, 2021
McConnell’s pitiful bleating reflects his fear that — with their loss of the White House and the majority in the Senate — Republicans’ grip on power is slipping through their fingers and that he is willing to say or do anything to prevent that from happening.
It is especially amusing to see the Minority leader employ a plea to recognize the will of the “more than 70 percent of Americans” who “favor commonsense voter I.D. requirements” when the GOP has successfully ignored the majorities who want commonsense gun regulations, a wealth tax on billionaires, and who favor the Biden infrastructure proposal that they are currently fighting so strenuously against.
It’s truly amazing how McConnell and other GOP loudmouths pivot so quickly from decrying the “cancel culture” that they accuse the left of employing, to embracing it when it suits their own aims.
Response to McConnell’s anti-corporate manifesto on social media was predictably harsh.
Consistency is not a thing for GQP's ….Unless it's guns, homosexuals, and catering to big business.
— Seth (@SethSte46795567) April 5, 2021
Free market, unless it takes away their power.
— Megan (@Just_Nag_Em) April 5, 2021
Republicans wake up everyday to "work" on how to create distraction, lies, obfuscation and put their energies into NOT helping people, just how to stay in power and grift.
— powerforlife03 (@powerforlife03) April 5, 2021
I wish there was some Court in our land that could review their law and determine whether crushing the democratic process under the heel of the Repub gang is not a violation of the equal protection clause of the Constitution.
— @OldTeacherDude (@OldTeacherDude) April 5, 2021
He's been in office since 1985. It's been working for a long time.
As long as there's someone else his constituents are willing to blame for their problems, it'll keep working.
— Josh (@CommonSense_NC) April 5, 2021
Thing is trumpers, nationalists and the politicians/pundits who pretended white working class economic anxiety was their thing had their bite at the apple and it was (as predicted) an unmitigated disaster. An orgy for the rich, 5 trillion in debt, a crashed economy and pandemic😷
— Luke Zaleski (@ZaleskiLuke) April 5, 2021
While it’s good to see that many people are wise to McConnell’s cynical hypocrisy, there are too many people who will accept his critique of corporate activism for democratic principles as gospel truth.
It’s the natural consequence of the divisions that Republicans have been fomenting for decades and the culmination of the Trump era.
It is all the more reason that the GOP must be defeated in their attempts to rebuild the electoral playing field with a sharp tilt in their own favor.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.