Grimes planning June fundraiser with U.S. Sen. Harry Reid; McConnell hosting pre-victory fundraiser in D.C.

05/15/2014 04:50 PM

UPDATED: U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes will host a June fundraiser with one of the chief national Democrats whom Republicans have been trying to tie her to since she jumped into the race last year — U.S. Sen. Majority Floor Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada.

Grimes campaign spokeswoman Charly Norton did not deny the planned fundraiser when asked by Pure Politics, but she did tout the campaign’s support within the Kentucky.

“Republicans, Democrats and Independents from all of Kentucky’s 120 counties are supporting Alison in this race because she is the only candidate to put forth a comprehensive, forward-looking plan to put Kentuckians back to work,” Norton said in a statement.

“Our 45,000 grassroots supporters are tired of Mitch McConnell’s 30-years of stale excuses and failed leadership, and ready for a leader in the U.S. Senate who puts people above partisanship,” she said.

Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell has frequently tried to tie Grimes to Reid specifically for his 2008 comments that “coal makes us sick, oil makes us sick, it’s ruining our country, it’s ruining our world.”

John Ralston, of the Ralston report in Nevada, first tweeted the fundraising invitation which is also posted on ActBlue.

The fundraising breakfast in is Washington. In December of 2013 , Reid told Bloomberg TV that he wouldn’t campaign for Grimes in Kentucky.

“I’m a traditionalist here, and that isn’t anything I’ve ever done and will not do,” Reid said in the interview.

Reid also hosted a Las Vegas luncheon for Grimes in October.

Grimes has been vocal about her support of the coal industry, and she’s blasted proposed EPA regulations on coal fired power plants in previous interviews with Pure Politics.

McConnell has been hammering Grimes on the Reid connection. In March McConnell again made an attempt to tie Grimes to the national Democratic party with a comment about Reid.

“My opponent will tell you she’s a new face, but she’s the new face for the status quo. She’s the new face for the same party leader of the Senate Harry Reid who said coal makes you sick,” McConnell said

McConnell’s campaign spokeswoman Allison Moore kept up the Kentucky coal connection in a statement sent to Pure Politics.

“Alison Lundergan Grimes was recruited and funded by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who says ‘coal makes us sick.’ The simple reality is that her entire candidacy was hatched by the very people waging war on Kentucky coal and if she won it would ensure that these liberals continue to set energy policy rather than the Kentucky champion for coal, Mitch McConnell,” Moore said.

Kentucky’s energy portfolio currently consists of 92 percent coal, but the industry has been decimated by federal EPA regulations, and cheaper sources of energy — including natural gas.

Grimes has been able to create distance with herself from President Barack Obama whom much ad time has also tried to link her to. Grimes has said she is, and has been, a Clinton Democrat.

Obama garnered less than 38 percent of the vote in the state in the 2012 presidential election.

Meanwhile, McConnell has invitations out for a “primary victory celebration” fundraiser on Thursday, May 15 in Washington D.C., five days before the May 20 primary election.

Grimes senior advisor Jonathan Hurst, blasted McConnell for the pre-election celebration in a statement sent to Pure Politics.

“This is just the latest example of Mitch McConnell putting Washington before Kentucky. We knew he valued his DC lobbyist friends more than Kentuckians, but the fact that he thinks our votes here in the Commonwealth don’t matter proves that he’s permanently gone Washington,” Hurst said.

“McConnell’s decision to shower his favorite Washington insiders with champagne and caviar five days early adds insult to injury for Kentucky families he’s ignored for 30 years.”

Of course, Grimes fundraiser with Reid is also booked for after the primary election and assumes a victory on Tuesday.

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



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