Sunday, June 26, 2016

Civility Watchdog: June 26, 2016, Mitch McConnell

STEPHANOPOULOS: You just heard those new poll numbers, 64 percent of Americans don’t think that Donald Trump is qualified to be president. Do you believe he’s qualified? And how do you convince all those voters who think he isn’t?

MCCONNELL: Well, look, I think there’s no question that he’s made a number of mistakes over the last few weeks. I think they’re beginning to right the ship, it’s a long time until November. And the burden, obviously, will be on him, to convince people that he can handle this job. And I think – a good step in the right direction with the changes he’s made in the campaign. He’s beginning to use a prepared script more often, which I think is absolutely appropriate for any candidate, whether you’re a long-time politician like Hillary Clinton or whether you’re new to the game like Donald Trump.

STEPHANOPOULOS: I didn’t hear you say whether you thought he was qualified.

MCCONNELL: Look, I leave that to the American people to decide. You know, he won the Republican nomination fair and square, he got more votes than anybody else against a lot of well-qualified candidates. And so our primary voters have made their decision as to who they want to be the nominee. The American people will be able to make that decision in the Fall.
-- Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), June 26, 2016, being interviewed by George Stephanopoulos of ABC News.

Comment: This is an evasion, as McConnell never answers the question. In particular, he uses the "it's for the voters to decide" evasion. Of course it's true that voters will have to assess whether they believe Trump is qualified to be president, but that doesn't mean McConnell can't give his opinion on the matter. After all, McConnell already said many of Trump's GOP rivals were "well-qualified"; what's stopping him from expressing his view on whether Trump himself is? Plus, McConnell has endorsed Trump; would he endorse someone who wasn't qualified?

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