Let me say, right up front, that this is just a question. I have no inside info on McConnell or any of this, of any kind; I’m just wondering out loud. And here’s my question:
Is McConnell’s non-interest in pushing for an investigation into the Russian connections just McConnell being McConnell, the party-above-everything DC player? Or, is he actually worried that he could be caught up in it in some way?
The McC-being-McC theory is obvious: Both Ryan and McC see the current situation as their chance to get everything they’ve ever wanted in terms of legislation and policy. As long as they can keep Trump (or Pence) in the White House, they can roll out their agenda, confident that the nation is focused on Trump and not what they are doing, and that they can get most of what they pass signed by Trump. If an investigation takes down Trump himself, or even worse, the entire administration including Pence, then they lose some of that space. (Of course, if Pence goes, Ryan becomes President, so not all bad for them and their agenda.)
The other part of McC-being-McC is just him being his typical party-loyalist self. Attack Obama, no matter what; stand up for Trump, no matter what.
McConnell Actually Worried
But here’s another possibility.
Remember that Obama was told about some of these Russian connections before the election. He convened a bipartisan meeting of the leaders of Congress from both parties, and wanted to have the entire group issue a statement condemning the Russian hacking and interference into our electoral process. Most of the group was good with that, but McConnell told Obama that if he (Obama) did that, then he (McC) would accuse Obama of meddling in the election and trying to throw it to Hillary. Obama backed down, and the joint announcement was never made.
Also remember that people who were briefed on what the IC knew back then came out of the meeting, essentially, with their hair on fire. Reid called for Comey to release the results of the investigation, because Reid knew how serious it all was. McConnell had to have known just as much as Reid – but he blocked it anyway.
So, now that the shit is really hitting the fan, and people on both sides of the aisle are calling for investigations, does McConnell see a risk that people will remember that he, McC, stood in the way of getting this out in the open BEFORE the election? Does McConnell worry that his party is going to get hammered for this, and he could wind up being the fall guy? Even worse, does he worry what the investigation will turn up, and that 2018 could turn into a blue wave because of it? Or even WORSE – is there something ELSE in the investigation that actually implicates McConnell in some way?
As I said, completely just a question. A set of them, actually. But a set of questions that would have been unthinkable a year ago … and now are not only plausible, but worth asking.