Tuesday was Donald Trump's last full day as President of the United States. On that day, his average approval rating stood at 38.5%. Among past presidents going back to Harry Truman, only Jimmy Carter left office in less regard. According to Gallup, a majority of Americans think he will be remembered as a "poor" or "below average" president. While it's far too early to make that kind of assessment, what floored me is the stinging rebuke Trump received yesterday (you can see it above) from one of his top lieutenants, delivered from the floor of the U.S. Senate.
GOP Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has always been blunt, laid Trump out about the violence at the Capital last week. "The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the President and other powerful people. They tried to use fear and violence to stop a specific proceeding proceeding of the first branch of the federal government which they did not like. But we pressed on. We stood together and said an angry mob would not get veto power over the rule of law in our nation, not even for one night."
Democrats will say this reprimand is too little, too late. Trump's supporters are already accusing McConnell of treason.
Personally, I am grateful for his remarks. As he himself observes, "Our marching orders for the American people are clear. We're to have a robust discussion and seek common ground. We are to pursue bipartisan agreement everywhere we can, and check and balance one another respectfully where we must. And through all of this, we must always keep in mind that we're all Americans, we all love this country and we're all in this together."
McConnell's conciliatory remarks starkly differ from those he made when Barack Obama was in office. My hope is that he means it.
President Joe Biden takes office today facing numerous crises. Now is a good time to come together and ignore the extremists, whether they are Lauren Bobert on the right or AOC on the left.