McConnell nationalizes his re-election: A vote for 'my opponent' is a vote for Harry Reid

08/03/2013 11:12 AM

MAYFIELD — When the 2014 race began in earnest a month ago, U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell said the contest would be about “issues and influence.”

Now, judging by McConnell’s remarks at Saturday’s pre-Fancy Farm GOP breakfast, it’s as much about U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and President Barack Obama.

McConnell highlighted how Reid, the senior senator from Nevada, said on “Fox Business News” in July 2008 that “coal makes us sick.”

Without mentioning Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes, McConnell told the more than 300 people at the Graves County Republican Party that the race would be about: “How our state would benefit to have the Senate led by a Nevadan who believes that coal makes you sick.”

He then broadened that to another frequent political target of his — the president.

“Do we want Obama’s America or do we want a Kentucky America?” McConnell asked.

Here’s his full speech:

Other Republican speakers joined in during the breakfast. U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield, R-Hopkinsville, blasted Obamacare.

He eventually criticized it for expanding big government but started out by saying the legislation has been a moneymaker for corporate America, specifically big insurance companies who liked that the Affordable Care Act requires more people to be covered and big pharmaceutical companies that are seeking to profit from the additional care. But he also said workers are getting the short end of the stick as some companies cut back hours from full 40-hour weeks so they don’t have to do provide health insurance.

And in the briefest speech of the morning, state Rep. Steven Rudy, a Republican from West Paducah, alluded to one of the key differences between McConnell, 71, and Grimes, 34.

“I don’t believe anybody my age has any business running for United State Senate,” said Rudy, who was born three months before Grimes in 1978.

One person who wasn’t even alluded to let alone mentioned was McConnell’s Republican primary challenger Matt Bevin. He didn’t attend the breakfast but is scheduled to speak at Fancy Farm.


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