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Day 1135

1/ Mitch McConnell will step down as the Senate Republican leader in November. The 82-year-old is the longest-serving Senate leader in history and has faced a series of recent health issues, including a concussion, a fall that required him to use a wheelchair periodically to get around, and at least two episodes where he momentarily froze in front of the media. Aides, however, said McConnell’s announcement was unrelated to his health. “One of life’s most under appreciated talents is to know when it’s time to move on to life’s next chapter,” McConnell said. “So I stand before you today […] to say that this will be my last term as Republican leader of the Senate.” McConnell’s legacy includes blocking Obama from filling a vacant Supreme Court seat in 2016 with Merrick Garland. The decision directly led to the confirmation of three Trump-nominated Supreme Court justices – Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett – creating the most right-leaning court in nearly a century, which went on to overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022, ending the national right to abortion. McConnell also helped guide 234 Trump-appointed judicial nominees to the bench, shifting the balance of the judiciary towards conservatives for the next generation. McConnell has called the Garland decision “the single most consequential thing I’ve ever done.” [Editor’s note: So long snake!] (Associated Press / NPR / NBC News / Politico / Washington Post / New York Times / CNN / Bloomberg / Wall Street Journal)

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