Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes (D-KY) is hitting Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) hard with a new ad taking aim at his overall character — when it comes to the basics like troop funding, the VA and the farm bill, Mitch McConnell has been MIA, they say.
First we learn Mitch McConnell skipped hundreds of committee meetings. Where was he?
He didn’t show up to vote on troop funding, the farm bill, and the VA … on days he found time for a lobbyist fundraiser and was on two TV shows.
Skipped a meeting on rural jobs but toasted the Chinese Vice President for “China’s great achievements.”
And the rest of the time, he created gridlock.
30 years is long enough.
This ad is a solid connect for the Grimes campaign. It lays out a very simple narrative that McConnell has not been focused on issues that matter to most people, on both sides of the aisle. On basic matters of character like funding our VA and troops, McConnell couldn’t be bothered to show up, sometimes because he was busy making a TV appearance or hang with lobbyists.
Several of these votes McConnell missed were “mark ups”. A mark up is an important part of the legislative process, in which members amend and rewrite proposed bills. McConnell missed mark up votes on some pretty big issues, like the VA, homeland security and the farm bill and he missed votes on troop funding.
Some DC politicians operate under the idea that it’s their job to make TV appearances and hype up their party’s talking points rather than be an actual part of the legislative process. In the past few years, it’s almost become comical with Republicans appearing on TV to demand information that is being released in a hearing or committee meeting that they are missing in order to appear on TV and demand said info.
So it is with McConnell, who has been in DC for 30 years and managed to focus most of his energy on his own rise in power as a party leader and in latter years, obstructing every breath President Barack Obama takes. McConnell is the 10th richest senator, according to the Center for Responsive Politics and in 2012, his estimated worth was $22.8 million. While there’s nothing wrong with being wealthy, McConnell behaves legislatively like he has been negatively impacted by the entitlement.
The Republican Senate Minority Leader has voted against raising the minimum wage 17 times. He has filibustered recent attempts to raise the minimum wage and has vowed to continue blocking a raise for hard working Americans. He still hasn’t managed to come up with a jobs plan for Kentucky — but then, he has made it clear that he doesn’t think it’s his job to do so.
Mitch McConnell admitted in a leaked tape that the Koch Brothers are running the Republican Party, so of course their agenda isn’t to be around for the legislative process, let alone care about our veterans or the long term unemployed, women, children, the elderly… If your name isn’t Koch, you don’t count.
Grimes spokesperon Charly Norton charged in a statement that Mitch McConnell puts himself above Kentucky families, “After 30 years in Washington, Mitch McConnell clearly cares more about himself and his party than Kentucky families. McConnell has even confessed that his national party ‘takes precedence’ over issues important to Kentucky and he doesn’t have time to show up to work. The people of Kentucky deserve better than a Senator who can’t help save their jobs because he doesn’t show up to his own.”
The problem for Mitch McConnell in this very tight Kentucky Senate race is that while he has Koch money to buy endless misleading ads, it’s so easy to target him with his relentless failures for the people as a Senator. The Grimes campaign has managed to quickly sum up why Kentuckians should ditch Mitch.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.