Alison Lundergan Grimes

Lisa Autry

One week from now, Kentucky voters decide whether to give U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell another six years or replace him with Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes. Both are crisscrossing the state trying to convince the still undecided. 

McConnell brought his "Kentucky Leads America" bus tour to the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green Tuesday. Joining the five-term incumbent on the road was Grammy award-winning artist Lee Greenwood who energized a crowd of party faithful as McConnell sounded a familiar theme on the stump.  He said the makeup of the Senate must change in order to change the country. 

The Senate Minority Leader pointed a finger at the Obama administration for what he called a slow economic recovery, over-regulation, and a takeover of healthcare. McConnell suggested America was on the decline and said the eyes of the world are on Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race.

"Right here in our state is the only test of whether America is coming back, and with your help by golly, a week from today, America is on the way back," McConnell told the audience.

If Republicans win six seats next Tuesday, McConnell is positioned to become Senate Majority Leader, and-- in his words--call the plays for the country while still looking out for Kentucky.

Jindal, Warren To Campaign For McConnell, Grimes This Week

Oct 27, 2014

Kentucky's U.S. Senate candidates are bringing in a pair of potential presidential candidates to help boost voter turnout in the final week of one of the country's most closely watched Senate races.

U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren will campaign with Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes in Louisville on Tuesday while Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal will appear with Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell on Wednesday.

This will be Warren's second trip to Kentucky for Grimes. She raised money for Grimes and spoke at a rally at the University of Louisville on tackling student loan debt earlier this year.

Grimes' campaign also announced Monday afternoon that former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton will return to Kentucky again to campaign with the Democrat on Saturday.

Jindal will appear with McConnell at the Restore America Rally in Louisville on Wednesday. Other guests include Carly Fiorina, the 2010 Republican Senate nominee in California, and conservative national radio host Hugh Hewitt.

Kentucky Senate Candidates Spar Over New Ads

Oct 27, 2014
Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

Both candidates are on the attack again with just over a week left in their contentious and closely watched race.

Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes' campaign challenged a new ad from Republican Senator Mitch McConnell that boasted his support among women. The Grimes campaign says it features a woman who is registered to vote in Pennsylvania.

The McConnell camp says she's a college student at the University of Louisville who hasn't updated her voter registration yet.

In a separate spat, the McConnell campaign said a new ad falsely accused him of using his office to improve his personal investments during the 2008 financial crisis.

Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

 Two weeks until Election Day and Kentucky's hotly-contested U.S. Senate seat appears to remain up for grabs. 

Mitch McConnell re-took the lead in the latest Bluegrass Poll released Monday evening. The incumbent Republican Senator edged his Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes by one point, 44-43 percent.  It marks a turnaround from the previous Bluegrass Poll which showed Grimes with a slight advantage. 

Both leads fell within the poll's margin of error. 

Meantime, another poll released Monday by WKU's Social Science Research Center found McConnell leading the race by five points over Grimes.  That survey was take between Oct. 6 and Monday and surveyed 601 likely Kentucky voters. 

Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

A poll conducted by the group Rasmussen Reports shows Senator Mitch McConnell leading Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes by 8 percentage points.

The telephone survey of 1,000 likely Kentucky voters showed 52 percent supporting McConnell, while 44 percent said they would vote for Secretary of State Grimes.

Two percent said they preferred another candidate in the race, and three percent said they were undecided.

See the entire Rasmussen Reports poll findings here.

The latest poll shows McConnell  receiving overwhelming support from Kentucky Republicans, with 83 percent saying they will vote for the incumbent. At the same time, McConnell is backed by 24 percent of those who identified as Democrats.

For the third time this campaign season, former President Bill Clinton is coming to Kentucky to campaign for Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes.  Clinton will appear at “Get out the Vote” rallies in Owensboro and Paducah next week.  

Earlier this week, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton joined Grimes at a fundraiser in Louisville.  Grimes is hoping to unseat five-time Republican incumbent Mitch McConnell November 4th.

Sen. McConnell is scheduled to embark on a bus tour through Kentucky's coal country next week.

Hillary Clinton Campaigns for Grimes

Oct 16, 2014
Kentucky News Network photo

Alison Lundergan Grimes got some help from Hillary Rodham Clinton Wednesday night as she seeks to distance herself from both her Republican opponent, Senator Mitch McConnell, and President Obama.

Clinton was the featured speaker at a boisterous rally in Louisville, the third time a Clinton has campaigned for Grimes this year. Former President Bill Clinton has appeared with Grimes twice this year.

Democratic state Auditor Adam Edelen called the rally a retirement party for McConnell, a 30 year veteran of the Senate. In fact, Clinton never called McConnell by name, only vaguely referring to a "30 year Senator from Kentucky." State Senator Gerald Neal led the crowd in chants of "Mitch doesn't care."

Wednesday's event was just a day after the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee stopped running TV ads in Kentucky. It was seen as another chance for Grimes to associated herself with the Clintons, who are popular in Kentucky.

KET: 133,000 Watched U.S. Senate Debate

Oct 15, 2014
KET

KET officials say the U.S. Senate debate was the highest rated PBS program in the nation on Monday.

Kentucky Educational Television officials estimate more than 133,000 people around the state tuned in for the hour-long Kentucky Tonight program, where host Bill Goodman moderated a discussion with Republican Senator Mitch McConnell and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes. It is the only scheduled televised debate between the two candidates in one of the country's most closely watched races ahead of the November 4 general election.

KET spokesman Todd Piccirilli said the broadcaster does not get ratings from all of its transmitters across the state. But its estimate comes from ratings in the Louisville market, the largest in the state.

KET

The highly anticipated debate between U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is now history.  There were no obvious blunders or bombshell political revelations during Monday night's KET broadcast.

As expected, McConnell spoke with confidence about becoming senate leader in 2015.  Grimes echoed repeatedly, that after 30 years in Washington, the senior senator is out of touch with Kentucky's needs.  Coal was a prominent topic during the debate.  Grimes said she differs with the president on coal policies.  "We have to reign in the EPA, but we also have to work across the aisle in a coalition effort," said Grimes.

McConnell maintained federal regulations have cost thousands of miners their jobs.  "My job is to look out for Kentucky's coal miners.  This administration has engaged in an assault on our coal industry," said McConnell.

Offices of Sen. McConnell and Sec. Grimes

Although they’ve shared a stage several times since the May primary, Monday night’s televised exchange between Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes and incumbent Republican Senator Mitch McConnell is the only official debate. 

Kentucky Tonight begins at 7 p.m. central/8 p.m. eastern on Kentucky Educational Television.

Representatives from both parties are optimistic their candidate will come out on top.

Russ Wilkey, chairman of the Daviess County Democratic Party says he’d like to see more than just one debate.

“Probably the more debates the better for the challenger,” said Wilkey. “You know, my personal feeling is that I get really nervous watching debates. It’s like me watching a UK basketball game, I get really nervous.”

Judge Denies Libertarian's Debate Request

Oct 12, 2014

 A federal judge has denied Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate David Patterson's request to force a public broadcaster to include him in Monday night's debate between Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes.

U.S. District Judge Gregory F. Van Tatenhove ruled that Kentucky Educational Television did not exclude David Patterson from the debate solely because of his political views. Patterson argued KET had discriminated against him based on thousands of pages of emails where KET officials discussed tightening the criteria to participate in the debate so as to exclude non-serious candidates.

Libertarian Party of Kentucky chairman Ken Moellman said he was not happy with the decision but said the state party does not have enough money to appeal the ruling. McConnell and Grimes are scheduled to appear on KET at 8 p.m. eastern Monday.

Hillary Rodham Clinton To Campaign For Grimes

Oct 10, 2014
Hillary Clinton campaign

U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes is getting help from another Clinton -- this time from Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The Kentucky Democrat's campaign says the former U.S. secretary of state and potential presidential candidate in 2016 will campaign for Grimes next Wednesday night in Louisville. Grimes spokeswoman Charly Norton said Friday the event is open to the public, and free tickets will be available at Democratic headquarters in all 120 Kentucky counties.

Clinton's husband, former President Bill Clinton, has made two trips to Kentucky this year to makes pitches for Grimes in Louisville, Lexington and Hazard in eastern Kentucky. Bill Clinton carried Kentucky both times he won the White House in the 1990s.

Grimes is challenging Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in one of the nation's mostly closely watched campaigns.

Judge Weighing Senate Debate Lawsuit

Oct 9, 2014

A federal judge is weighing whether to force a Kentucky public broadcaster to include a Libertarian U.S. Senate candidate in its televised debate Monday between Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes.

   U.S. District Judge Gregory F. Van Tatenhove said it gives him pause that Kentucky Educational Television changed the criteria for participating in the debate in the middle of the election cycle. But he also said he does not see anything in First Amendment case law that requires KET to include all viewpoints.

AFL-CIO

The national AFL-CIO says it has its eyes on several Kentucky state House races, as the group tries to counter GOP efforts to flip control of the chamber.

Republicans are hoping to win a majority of state House seats for the first time in nearly a century.

AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Schuler is in Kentucky this week, rallying labor members ahead of the November 4th general election.

She says her group is especially concerned about one of the central tenets of the Kentucky Republican legislative agenda.

“Primarily because of the folks who have been touting Right to Work as a goal of theirs to pass, as the first order of business if the House changes hands,” Schuler told WKU Public Radio Tuesday.

Kentucky Republicans have promised to pass what they call “right to work” legislation if they gain control of the state House. Such a bill would give workers the ability to decide whether or not to join a union.

Office of Sec. Grimes

Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes isn’t being honest with voters about her support of Kentucky’s coal industry, according to a video released today by the conservative Project Veritas.

The video by James O’Keefe—who was widely criticized for deceptively editing a video about ACORN in 2009—relies on hidden camera interviews with Kentucky Democratic officials about Grimes and coal, but ultimately doesn't prove much about where she truly stands on coal.

The video was disseminated with a headline stating that it's Grimes' staff members who are talking.

But O’Keefe fails to get either Alison Lundergan Grimes or any of her paid campaign staffers on video. What he gets instead are county Democratic Party officials—from Fayette and Warren counties—and a field organizer. All say something similar to what Juanita Rodriguez of Warren County says when asked if Grimes is lying about her support of coal:

“Well, I don’t really think her heart is 100 percent in backing coal, but she has to say she is because she will not get a huge number of votes in this state if she doesn’t,” Rodriguez said.

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