It turns out Donald Trump and Abraham Lincoln have a lot more in common than a passing reference in the second presidential debate. You may recall a leaked transcript from one of Hillary’s closely guarded speeches had her admitting “both a public and a private position on certain issues.”
Hillary explained she was only following the duplicity precedent set by Abraham Lincoln during passage of the 13th Amendment. It was an audacious lie, but a lie nonetheless.
As Trump said, “Now she’s blaming [her] lie on the late great Abraham Lincoln . . . OK, Honest Abe never lied . . . That's the big difference between Abraham Lincoln and you.”
It’s not surprising Hillary would use the dead to buttress a lie — rumor has it she blames Vince Foster for the email server — what’s surprising is learning Trump and Lincoln both confronted a similar governing situation.
Both lost the popular vote but won the Electoral College. Lincoln and Trump were met with riots instigated by political opponents.
Each wanted to take control of the capital, although in Lincoln’s case it was Richmond.
Lincoln’s top priority was success on the battlefield, while Trump’s is success in the political arena, yet both must rely on subordinates who oppose their plans and hold them in contempt.
Lincoln’s burden was Maj. Gen. George McClellan. Trump’s is Senate Majority Leader Mitch McClellan. Whoops, make that Mitch McConnell.
McClellan was an excellent organizer who retrained the Army of the Potomac. Troops loved the general and morale was high. McConnell is the architect of the Republican Senate majority. He’s recruited candidates and raised money to get them elected.
Although not as personally inspiring as the dashing “Little Mac,” (the thought of McConnell on horseback is as cringe–inducing as his brandishing a musket at the CPAC conference was) the Senate GOP majority is behind Mitch and confident of the future.
The Mac boys have interchangeable opinions regarding their commander in chief.
McClellan described Lincoln as "nothing more than a well-meaning baboon . . . unworthy of . . . his high position."
In an Time Warner Cable interview Mitch “lauded Clinton as ‘intelligent and capable’ while casting Trump as not yet credible.”
It was the King of Kentucky’s view that Trump is still a sideshow barker, “he . . . commended Trump on his ability to entertain and turn on audiences, but that for the general election he needs to up his ‘level of seriousness,’ a level that involves a teleprompter and ‘staying on message.’”
Mitch told Senate candidates in a private session to “drop [Trump] like a hot rock” if they feared he would hurt their chances.
The Mac twins also oppose central portions of their president’s platform. McClellan fought federal interference with slavery. McConnell has been lukewarm at best on the wall and undercuts Trump by saying “all of us came here from somewhere else.”
He adds the Senate won’t consider Trump’s temporary Muslim ban.
Worst of all, both “Little Macs” are paralyzed by the prospect of failure.
McClellan’s army was never strong enough. Although he often outnumbered the Confederates by a factor of three, McClellan claimed to be outmatched and continually demanded reinforcements. When he was finally forced to advance against the Confederate States of America (CSA) the army moved slowly and tentatively.
McClellan’s fear of defeat meant he would never risk enough for victory.
This caution and reluctance to commit the full strength of his army meant McClellan threw away two opportunities to win the war. The first during the Peninsula Campaign and the second at Antietam.
McClellan’s foreboding and reluctance to act were so great Secretary of War Henry Halleck observed after a visit to the army, “There is an immobility here that exceeds all that any man can conceive of. It requires the lever of Archimedes to move this inert mass.”
Trump may be forced to borrow that lever to move the Senate today. McConnell promises voters with a Senate majority it will be “On to Richmond.” Then when he gets his majority, it’s never enough. He’s more interested in preserving the “traditions of the Senate” than he is in defeating the left.
Even when McConnell has an issue that outrages the nation and a potential victory is at hand — the murder of Kate Steinle in a “sanctuary city” — he fears the keyboards and cameras of the leftist media. And the thought of forcing a confrontation with Obama, which might cost McConnell troops and his prestige, is simply unthinkable.
Why risk it all for a president you can’t stand and plan to outlast?
Two presidents facing the challenge of a generation and both hobbled by fainthearted subordinates. Lincoln finally lost patience and said, “If General McClellan does not want to use the army, I would like to borrow it for a time.”
I wonder how long it will be before President Trump finally asks to borrow Mitch McClellan’s majority?
Michael R. Shannon is a commentator, researcher for the League of American Voters, and an award-winning political and advertising consultant with nationwide and international experience. He is author of "Conservative Christian’s Guidebook for Living in Secular Times (Now with added humor!)." Read more of Michael Shannon's reports — Go Here Now.
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