Bevin says fear is keeping Republicans in line behind McConnell

01/24/2014 02:58 PM

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Bevin says U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell has been strong-arming Kentucky Republicans and tried to use similar tactics to keep Bevin out of the race last year.

Bevin, who entered the GOP primary in July, said the McConnell campaign had members from all facets of the Republican Party call to discourage him from entering the race.

“I mean the number of people who called me, the number of people who were set up,” Bevin said. “First, they were all working off the same talking points, it was hilarious, they had all clearly been given a script…They were varying degrees of kind of encouragement to threats to you know — you’re going to ruin yourself, we’re going to make sure you can never go out in public again.”

Bevin also said that it is sad that members of the same party bully each other instead of encouraging a healthy debate.

In an “interview with CNN”: Thursday, Bevin told “Situation Room” host Wolf Blitzer that the McConnell campaign has engaged in “thuggery” against him. When Blitzer asked Bevin if he had seen any “evidence of real negative politics, something ugly” that has been used against him by the McConnell campaign, Bevin responded by saying “no, the same old noise that we expect from Mitch McConnell.”

The McConnell campaign said in a statement to Pure Politics that Bevin’s claims without evidence re-affirm his position in this race.

“Matt Bevin has become a sad caricature of a failed challenger who is struggling to explain his bailouts, shady business dealings and resume falsification while flailing away with desperate attacks,” said McConnell Spokeswoman Allison Moore.

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Pure Politics airs Monday through Friday at 7 p.m. ET and again at 11:30 p.m. ET in all of cn|2's Kentucky markets. The program features political analysis and news, as well as interviews with officials, candidates, policy makers and political observers.


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