Call him “Cocaine Mitch,” “Nuclear Mitch” or the steward of the “legislative graveyard.” Mitch McConnell says he’s the “Grim Reaper” anyway, so he’s loving every minute of it.
While his critics have tried to make the Kentucky Republican public enemy No. 1, the Senate GOP leader has embraced the demonization in a bid to protect his Senate majority, his own seat and his title as longest serving Senate GOP leader in U.S. history.
“We need to have a little fun in this business,” McConnell said in a brief interview. “I used to call myself Darth Vader when I was back in the campaign finance wars.”McConnell’s recasting as a cartoon villain to the left is a dramatic transformation from the tight-lipped, low-key Republican leader who was once the scourge of conservatives and even, at times, President Donald Trump.
But McConnell has renovated his reputation on the right with his blunt exercise of power — confirming two Supreme Court justices and dismantling portions of the filibuster while developing a knack for driving his Democratic and GOP opponents mad.