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Among many quotes

Among the many quotes from our president, the one I found most revealing was: “Would you be able to do us a favor, though?” It is asked of the new president of Ukraine just as he has begun a term in office. The young man wants to do a good job in the demanding challenge he has had little preparation for. And he is attempting to steady himself in order to steady a nation.

President Trump is trying to get him to compromise that for his own selfish political advantage. What kind of principled and self-respecting leader would do that? When questioned about it he might predictably reply, “Why should I be concerned about something like that? It’s not my responsibility!”

There might credibly have been another such instance when Trump would have intervened to get cooperation. (This may not have actually occurred, but it seems not beyond the pale.) In the first year of his term the president is not getting much support from the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. Along with that, Donald had months before he appointed McConnell’s wife, Elaine Chao, to be transportation secretary. Is it not reasonable to believe that this would be insulting to the president, and thus a point of contention? Would Donald Trump not raise the issue? “Am I supposed to keep her in the cabinet or can’t you see an opportunity to be more helpful in my effort to govern?” Or would he instead have an overriding code of honor to observe?

McConnell, now also known as “Moscow Mitch,” has come far in the past two years to fulfill his president’s ideal of a fellow Republican.

I have read the leader’s memoir, “The Long Road” (2016), in which he writes that he didn’t do anything for immediate political advantage. That was then because he now acts in an unparalleled partisan manner — employing the U.S. Constitution as only something to get around. With the influence and power acquired since 1985, McConnell has in the process gone from clever to calculating to cynical to deceitful. In the Senate’s phase of this historic moment (after impeachment by the House of Representatives), has he now arrived at diabolical?

RICHARD J. YOST

South Abington Township, Lackawanna County

Submitted via email

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