Paul, McConnell turn attention to unifying GOP

05/19/2010 07:49 AM

BOWLING GREEN — After a game of phone tag during election night, newly-crowned Republican U.S. Senate nominee Rand Paul and Mitch McConnell, the Republican U.S. Senate leader who tried to beat him, finally spoke late Tuesday night.

Rand Paul accepting the GOP nomination with his parents looking on

Paul told cn|2 Politics early Wednesday that the two men talked for “several minutes” and focused on how to bring the Republican Party together after the contentious primary between Paul and Trey Grayson, whom McConnell supported. The first test will be a unity rally Saturday at the state GOP headquarters in Frankfort.

“He said he’ll do anything we’d like to help, as much as we’d want to ask for,” Paul said in between doing live television interviews via satellite from his Bowling Green campaign office.

That echoed remarks Grayson made Tuesday night during and after his concession speech.

“I think it’s really important for Republicans and conservatives across Kentucky to come together and win this race in th fall,” Grayson said. “I’ll do whatever he asks me to do.“  Watch Grayson’s interview with reporters:

Paul said he appreciated Grayson’s comments and would welcome Grayson and McConnell to join him on the campaign trail. “As much as they’ll help, we’d love to have their help,” he said.

Grayson and Paul still haven’t spoken after Tuesday night’s results, in which Paul soundly won with 59.8 percent of the vote to Grayson’s 35.4 percent. But David Adams, Paul’s campaign manager, said he hopes to connect the two sometime Wednesday.

Paul also hasn’t spoken to U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Somerset, who backed Grayson. But he said pundits shouldn’t read too much into that because he may have missed the call amid the din of the election night celebration. Paul did speak to U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning, who endorsed him, and Republican U.S. Reps. Geoff Davis of Hebron, Brett Guthrie of Bowling Green and Ed Whitfield of Hopkinsville.

- Ryan Alessi


Subscribe to email updates.

Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.