Magazine January 27, 2020, Issue

Senate Republicans Are Not ‘Obstructionist’

Mitch McConnell (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Or else Senate Democrats are, too

At the June 26 Democratic presidential debate, candidates spent a full round of questions addressing how their presidency would circumvent obstructionist Senate Republicans. Moderators Chuck Todd and Rachel Maddow focused on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who “doesn’t operate [in a bipartisan manner] — he operates differently,” and who would surely block all Democratic legislation and Supreme Court nominees (and not just in election years, either).

In response, the candidates treated McConnell and Senate Republicans as a unique threat to democracy who, in the words of Senator Elizabeth Warren, have “just completely dismissed what people care about across this country.”

Had the senators

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