The Chatter: McConnell getting hit from all sides over deal and new poll numbers

10/17/2013 12:45 PM

Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is slightly ahead of Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell in a new poll that includes questions about McConnell’s role in the government shutdown.

Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling’s new Kentucky suvey shows Grimes leading McConnell, 45-43 percent, with 12 percent of those polled undecided. The survey has a margin of error of 2.8 percent.

The two point lead remained the same when voters were asked about the government shutdown with the following question:

“Now that you know Mitch McConnell supported the government shutdown, I’ll ask you one more time: If the election for US Senate next year were today, would you vote for Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes or Republican Mitch McConnell?”

In response, Grimes led McConnell 47-45 percent with 8 percent undecided.

The McConnell campaign said in a statement that the poll numbers are more of the same from Democrats.

“We’ve seen this all before. Alison Grimes and her liberal beltway allies can use partisan pollsters to cook up poll after poll to prop up her fledgling campaign, but no one is buying it,” McConnell spokeswoman Allison Moore said in a statement to Pure Politics. “Mitch McConnell is strong in Kentucky and well positioned for reelection.The Democrat playbook: when you run into trouble, quickly release a PPP poll.”

McConnell’s opponents hit him on deal to re-open government
Senator McConnell is being criticized by his opponents on both sides of the aisle for his deal to re-open the government and avoid default.

In a release, the Grimes campaign said McConnell may think the deal is a winning strategy but that his constituents are going to pay the price for his actions.

“It is an embarrassment that McConnell waited until the 11th hour to stop the manufactured crisis that he and Members of Congress created,” Grimes spokeswoman Charly Norton said in a statement. “It is not heroic for Mitch McConnell to do his job and reopen the government.”

McConnell’s Republican primary opponent, Louisville businessman Matt Bevin, released a web video about the deal.

In the ad, Bevin praises the efforts of Senators Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Mike Lee, R-Utah, to defund the Affordable Care Act. Bevin says the government shutdown could have been avoided if it wasn’t for McConnell and Reid.

“Now it seems Mitch McConnell has cut and run from yet another fight,” Bevin says in the ad. “Making deals with Washington Democrats like Harry Reid to raise the debt limit without consideration for defunding or even delaying Obamacare. Worse it doesn’t even put us on a path to financial sustainability.”

McConnell’s deal and how it plays into his re-election battle is also catching the attention of political figures like Sarah Palin, according to Politico .

Palin took to Facebook hinting at that she is supporting the tea party candidates, like Matt Bevin, in the re-election races of some Senate Republicans.

“Rest well tonight, for soon we must focus on important House and Senate races. Let’s start with Kentucky — which happens to be awfully close to South Carolina, Tennessee, and Mississippi — from sea to shining sea we will not give up. We’ve only just begun to fight,” Palin posted on her Facebook page.

About Pure Politics

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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