Mitch McConnell’s position in the GOP is precarious. Trump hates him, even though he helped acquit him after his second impeachment, ensuring he could run again in 2024. And his party remains, by and large, in thrall to a one-term septuagenarian who’s been booted from much of social media and now lives in resorts, ranting to strangers. But he still has power. And when he announced on Wednesday that no way would Joe Biden be impeached, that pretty much did it.
“The President is not going to be removed from office with a Democratic House and a narrowly Democratic Senate,” McConnell told a crowd at a Kentucky event. “That’s not going to happen.” After all, it’s the Democrats who have run all three houses of government. He did have one solution, though. “I think the way these behaviors get adjusted in this country is at the ballot box.”
For the last few weeks, conservatives — including senators Marsha Blackburn and Sen. Lindsey Graham — have tried to paint Biden’s decision to withdraw from Afghanistan, after 20 fruitless years, as a career-ending one. But the idea that a still wet-behind-the-ears president should be removed from office, over what have been a low number of deaths — and a rather high number of evacuations — has seemed over-the-top. And now that the most powerful Republican, who can still sheepdog his entire party to follow his lead, has stomped all over that already impossible dream.