McConnell: Bush was a ‘millstone’ around Republicans’ necks.

mcconnell4.jpg Yesterday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) told reporters he is convinced that the public will again embrace conservatives now that President Bush is gone:

President Bush had become extremely unpopular, and politically he was sort of a millstone around our necks in both ’06 and ’08. We now have the opportunity to be on offense, offer our own ideas and we will win some.”

McConnell hasn’t always rejected Bush. As Matt Yglesias has noted, “It’s McConnell, after all, who was architect of the unorthodox notion that Senate Republicans should respond to losing their majority in 2006 by launching a lot of filibusters in defense of the unpopular incumbent president’s agenda.” So who is the new leader of the party? In the same interview, McConnell said, “Newt Gingrich, for example, has an idea a minute. Many of those are quite good. Many of those become amendments.”