Mitch’s Shutdown Game

AP

Mitch McConnell doesn’t want voters thinking he’s planning to resume government shutdown brinkmanship if Republicans win the Senate. Shutdown is a loaded and unpopular word. So he’s putting it in legis-speak to give himself some deniability. But that’s exactly what he’s promising to do if becomes Senate majority leader. He told as much to Politico on his campaign bus a few days ago, and he’s been caught saying it privately a couple of months ago to a group of high-dollar GOP donors on an audio recording published today by The Nation. This kind of cynical gambit relies on the lack of sophistication of voters and a compliant press corps. Probably not a bad gamble.