Pity Mitch McConnell

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Josh Green reports from Kentucky, where people seem to be supporting Rand Paul’s Senate bid because they have no idea what they’re talking about:

In my talks with voters on the campaign trail today and yesterday, the idea that the Republican Party is as complicit as the Democratic Party in what ails the country is something I heard again and again. I made a point of seeking out registered Republican voters, and the frustration with Mitch McConnell, Kentucky’s senior senator and the Senate Minority Leader, seemed indistinguishable from–or perhaps better to say, “was a large part of”–the general frustration with Washington. “Republicans in Washington, D.C. are just playing ‘follow the leader,’ Janice Cox told me at a rally in Paducah earlier today, to which she’d brought her daughter, grandchildren, and a jumbo-sized American flag. “We need a true constitutional conservative.”

McConnell may not be the most rigorous ideological thinker on the planet, but as Jon Chait says he’s worked extremely hard and been devilishly clever at opposing Barack Obama’s legislative agenda by every means possible. The Kentucky right seems not to recognize that a President whose party controls the House of Representatives and 58-60 Senate seats is bound to get a lot of stuff done. McConnell, dealt a very poor hand, has done a pretty incredible job of keeping his caucus unified and thinking up clever strategies of obstruction. It’s just hard to do! After the midterms, there’ll be a lot more Republicans in Congress and they’ll find their job much easier.