Transforming figures from the past depression, FDR, Churchill, Hitler…These men embodied their parties and masses fixated on their words as they changed the direction of the world. Obama filled stadiums as he spoke of change in 2008 in the midst of crisis. He had the opportunity to be swept up in history as one of these figures. But before Obama had the chance to even place his hand on the Bible to accept the office of President, Senator Mitch McConnell declared that the Republican’s top priority was to make sure he was not re-elected. McConnell risked the wrath of the American public with such brazen talk and actions for there was no mistaking that Republicans would not assist Obama at a time of one of our nations greatest crises.
Either Senator McConnell had lost his political savvy by being so blatantly obvious in his mission or he felt so much passion that he must be the man to stop another’s destiny that political fall out be damned. He was not going to allow Obama to ascend to a deity at a time when the American public was susceptible to have allowed it. What we got instead was mudslinging and finger pointing at one failed attempt to redirect policy after another. No superstar rose out of the crisis. No personality represented the great American comeback. Instead, we got what we got, a bloody mess. Yet, America has not been thrust headlong into European socialism.
We are now faced with either choosing to try the Republican brand of capitalism again or to endure four more years of partisan struggle. Only decades more of history will tell if McConnell will be branded a hero or a hack. I only know that four years of economic suffering were the collateral damage of this epic battle and I cannot yet begin to fathom if the cost was worth it.