Mitch McConnell’s critics have intensified their use of the nickname Moscow Mitch after learning that the usually unflappable Senate majority leader is particularly irked by the nickname.
McConnell showed an unusual amount of disdain after critics harped on his alleged connections to Russia, especially given the moniker and its corresponding hashtag on Twitter, as Salon noted in an opinion essay.
The report shared a tweet from a speech McConnell gave in his native Kentucky this week, showing how protesters arrived to drown him out with chants of Moscow Mitch.
The nickname for McConnell arose in recent weeks as a reaction to the majority leader’s refusal to allow a vote on election reform bills. McConnell claimed these bills were an attempt by Democrats to gain a partisan advantage.
Some experts have said that Russia is continuing its campaign to interfere in American elections. In fact, former special counsel Robert Mueller said in his testimony before Congress that Russia is already working to interfere in the 2020 presidential election.
Despite widespread concerns about the security of American elections, McConnell used his power to keep election reform bills from getting a vote in the Senate. That led critics to seize on the nickname, prompting an out of character response, Newsweek noted.
Though McConnell traditionally has been unaffected by criticism, he said in a speech that the attempts by critics to tie him to Russia represented “modern-day McCarthyism.”
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As the Salon essay noted, the nickname is fitting for McConnell.
“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell doesn’t like it when you call him #MoscowMitch. He hates it so much that he’ll accuse you of being a McCarthyist for doing so. If the accusation was untrue — that is, if McConnell, President Donald Trump and other Republicans weren’t empowering Russia at the expense of America for their personal benefit — then #MoscowMitch and talk of collusion in Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign would be unfair, even unjust,” the report noted.
“As the facts currently stand, however, it is a perfectly fair label.”
Others have pointed out what they see as shadowy connections between Mitch McConnell and Russian oligarchs with a direct line to President Vladimir Putin.
A January report from the political group Democratic Coalition, via Medium, revealed ties the Kentucky senator has to a multinational corporation called Access Industries, which is owned by businessman Len Blavatnik, born in Soviet-era Ukraine. The company donated $3.5 million to the Senate Leadership Fund, a super PAC led by McConnell’s former chief of staff.
Editor’s note: this story previously referred to Len Blavatnik as a “Russian oligarch.” A representative of Access Industries contacted The Inquisitr to clarify Blavatnik’s place of birth and correct the label of “oligarch.”