A long time ago Ronald Reagan said “trust but verify” while signing the very first nuclear arms reduction treaty with the old Soviet Union.

A long time ago Ronald Reagan said “trust but verify” while signing the very first nuclear arms reduction treaty with the old Soviet Union. That treaty and every treaty with the Russians and the other nuclear armed former Soviet nations has provided for the U.S. to verify with inspectors on the ground. The last treaty expired a little over a year ago. Since then we haven’t had the kind of access we need to the nuclear weapons aimed at America.  The follow-on treaty has been negotiated to the satisfaction of all concerned. Every American expert, conservative and liberal, Republican and Democrat, is convinced the treaty recently signed by President Obama is necessary for the safety of America and is a really good deal for us. It is the Senate’s Constitutional duty to review and ratify treaties. There is little doubt that put to an up or down vote the current treaty would be approved by at least 67 Senators.

Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Senate minority leader, has announced that his top priority for the next two years is to defeat President Obama at every turn. He, and the other Republicans, using the rules of the Senate have repeatedly blocked legislation.  McConnell has made sure that Senators don’t have a chance to vote up or down on much of anything.

There was supposed to be a vote on the nuclear arms treaty in the next few days. That treaty will allow American inspectors to physically monitor Russian nuclear weapons.  Senator John Kyl, McConnell’s point man on the treaty, has announced that he is going to use the rules of the Senate to block a vote.  He can’t articulate a reason for blocking the vote, but that is what he has decided to do.

His decision denies U.S. inspectors an opportunity to make sure no nuclear weapons have been sold by a rogue Russian commander to Middle Eastern terrorists.  If we wake up some morning to the news that St. Louis has been nuked we will all need to consider the responsibility of Mitch McConnell, John Kyl, and all of the Senate Republicans who have placed their desire to destroy Barack Obama ahead of the safety of the nation.