Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Monday night crowed about jamming through Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court — and then promptly adjourned the Senate until after the election.
The decision to adjourn was particularly striking because it meant that no economic relief would pass the Senate before election day during a time when millions of people are unemployed and under the threat of being evicted from their homes.
Writing in the Lexington Herald-Leader, columnist Linda Blackford excoriates McConnell for prioritizing judicial confirmations over help for the millions who are suffering due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“McConnell has not just failed to act to more COVID-19 relief that could help his struggling constituents, he has worked actively against it, while blaming Democrats,” she writes. “But it’s clear that a long debate over aid might have distracted him from confirming Barrett, thus fulfilling his dearest, court-packing dreams, cementing his status as the wiliest tactician in history. Why should poor people in Kentucky get in the way of that?”
Blackford’s editorial also quotes Louisville resident Latrice Wilson, who says many people in her neighborhood are facing eviction and will be booted from their homes without help from the government.
“Why is COVID aid not a priority for him?” Wilson asked. “Why should his constituents have to feel like we’re begging? People are trying to survive and it’s hard to survive and he doesn’t care.”
And Jason Bailey, executive director of the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy, similarly told Blackford that “I just don’t think [McConnell] cares because it doesn’t affect him.”