Even on last day before primary, McConnell sticks to influence message but doesn't take questions

05/19/2014 10:38 AM

LOUISVILLE — Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell is ending his primary campaign with a familiar theme: outlining a message that hammers on his influence and then moving on to the next stop without taking questions from reporters.

McConnell embarked on a seven-city fly-around on Monday, the day before the primary election. McConnell started his day in Louisville with his wife and former secretary of labor Elaine Chao.

Both McConnell and Chao focused their messages on the importance of influence, and how it would be a set back for Kentucky to have a newcomer in the Senate, although he never mentioned either his chief GOP challenger, Louisville businessman Matt Bevin, or the likely Democratic nominee, Alison Lundergan Grimes.

Again McConnell made the case that Republicans are poised to take control of the Senate which could elevate him to the position of Majority leader.

Being the minority floor leader in the U.S. Senate has made the campaign a national race McConnell argued as he quipped, “you might say I’m raising money for both sides.”

Referring to Grimes, McConnell said, “she is able to raise money because she’s running against me. I’m able to raise money because I am me.”

However, McConnell’s go-to argument about influence could be undermined by a group of Republican candidates who won’t commit to backing him if he wins another term, according to The Hill.

The speeches Monday morning from McConnell and Chao took place in a crowded airplane hangar at Louisville’s Bowman Field Airport, and McConnell never stopped to take questions from reporters after the event.

Here’s video of McConnell leaving the venue and driving to the plane waiting yards away.

GOP U.S. Senate candidate Matt Bevin and Grimes, the presumptive Democratic nominee, are also campaigning across Kentucky on Monday.

Grimes, who doesn’t face fierce competition in Tuesday’s primary, embarked on a bus tour 10 days ago that continues through Monday.

“For the past 10 days, Alison Lundergan Grimes has visited 50-counties across the Commonwealth, talking with voters on the ground about her forward-looking plan to grow Kentucky’s middle class,” Grimes campaign advisor Jonathan Hurst said. “Meanwhile, Mitch McConnell is up in the air the day before the primary election, trying to buy his way to a sixth term in Washington.”

About Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics, the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like the connection between the high profile Steubenville, Ohio rape and a Kentucky hacker whose push for further investigation could put him in federal prison. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickStorm_cn2. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@charter.com.



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