MSNBC’s Jason Johnson Hits Biden: If He Thinks McConnell Will Work With Him on Covid Relief, He ‘Hasn’t Learned Anything in the Last 12 Years’
MSNBC’s Jason Johnson warned President-elect Joe Biden that if thinks Mitch McConnell would be a good-faith partner on passing a Covid relief package he “hasn’t learned anything in the last 12 years of American politics.”
Speaking with Deadline: White House‘s host, Nicolle Wallace, Johnson expressed deep skepticism about the incoming president’s faith in the Majority Leader’s comity, especially if Republicans retain the majority in the Senate in the next Congress.
Wallace pointed out that Biden hinted he would also rely on public opinion to leverage the GOP-led Senate, which has dragged its heels and refused to pass a House Covid relief package from May, to act between now and his inauguration.
“What he is laying out is a political strategy,” Wallace said. :He’s going to go to the American people and say ‘Help is on the way, these guys are blocking it’ and it seems like a smart way to use them.”
“Maybe,” a clearly circumspect Johnson replied. “I believe that Joe Biden, President-Elect, can pat his head and rub his tummy, but at this point it’s like, look, you can go and sort of negotiate with your landlord now but you should also be doing the bake sale. Maybe if you raise enough money you won’t have to negotiate with the landlord Mitch McConnell. Joe Biden’s number one move should be getting down to Georgia. If you get those two votes, then you have additional pressure you can put on the Senate. As of right now, if [Jon] Ossoff and [Raphael] Warnock do not win down there, Mitch McConnell has no absolutely incentive to change his mind about anything.”
“He has shown that he is shame-proof. He has shown that he is guilt proof. He has shown that he is a hypocrite,” Johnson then fired off, laying into McConnell. “Joe Biden is not going to be able to bring anything to to table to make Mitch McConnell put that bill out to be voted on.”
Johnson then revisited the comprehensive immigration reform fight from during the Obama administration, when then-GOP Speaker John Boehner stubbornly refused to bring an easily-passable bill up for a vote because Republican leaders feared it would anger the party’s base.
“I think Joe Biden has to come up with a much more aggressive, multi-prong strategy in order to make this happen,” Johnson concluded. “Maybe he doesn’t want to reveal all his plans now, but if he thinks any of this relief will come in the form of Mitch McConnell looking at the needs of the American people above his own ideological recalcitrance, then I don’t think Joe Biden has learned anything in the last 12 years of American politics.”
Watch the video above, via MSNBC.
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