Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell

Politics
4:47 pm
Wed April 30, 2014

Mitch McConnell-Led Filibuster Halts Minimum Wage Bill in Senate

Credit File photo

Senate Republicans successfully blocked a key Democratic proposal on Wednesday to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.

Led by Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., all but one GOP senator voted to sustain a filibuster against the measure, which failed to reached the needed 60-vote threshold.

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Politics
5:30 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte to Speak at the University of Louisville, Stump for Mitch McConnell

Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-NH.,
Credit Wikimedia Commons and U.S. Senate

U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., will be in Louisville on Monday to speak at Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell's leadership center and rally for his re-election campaign.

First elected in 2010, Ayotte is considered a leading voice on national security and foreign affairs as a member of the Senate’s Armed Services and Homeland
Security committees.

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Politics
9:26 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

UofL, UK Presidents Praise Mitch McConnell for Helping Land Obama Manufacturing Jobs Partnership

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
Credit U.S. Senate

The presidents of Kentucky's two major universities are praising Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., for his role in helping to secure funding for an Obama administration partnership meant to spur manufacturing jobs.

President Obama announced earlier today a $140 million commitment in Department of Defense funds would be going towards a program for two innovation institutes.

The University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky have both been selected to participate in the public-private partnership.

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Politics
8:00 am
Mon January 13, 2014

Report: Mitch McConnell, John Yarmuth Among Wealthiest Members of Congress

Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth (l) and Republican Senator Mitch McConnell (r)

A new report shows that for the first time in U.S. history, a majority of lawmakers in Washington are millionaires. And two members of Kentucky’s federal delegation are among the wealthiest.

The analysis of personal financial disclosure records released by the Center for Responsive Politics shows most members of Congress have an average net worth of $1 million.

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Politics
9:00 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Report: History on Mitch McConnell's Side for Re-Election, But Senate Leaders Are More Vulnerable

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell
Credit File photo

A new report shows defeating Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky in this year’s election would be a historical rarity given his status as minority leader.

An analysis of Senate elections over the past 90 years by the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota finds sitting party leaders have won re-election 87 percent of the time.

In only one case has a minority leader—Democrat Tom Dashcle in 2004—lost a re-election bid.

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Politics
11:51 am
Tue December 17, 2013

Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell Opposes Ryan-Murray Budget Agreement

Credit File photo

After days of speculation on where Senator Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., stood, the GOP leader says he will vote against the two-year budget agreement forged by Democrats and Republicans.

The Ryan-Murray plan seeks to relieve around $63 billion of automatic spending cuts known as sequestration while continuing to slash the nation's deficit by a projected $23 billion over the next decade.

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Politics
11:58 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Hot Mic Catches Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul Discussing Shutdown Talking Points

Sens. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul at a Tea Party rally in Kentucky
Credit Kenny Colston / Kentucky Public Radio

As a growing number of Americans disapprove of the federal government shutdown, a "hot mic" conversation Wednesday night caught Kentucky Republican Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul discussing how the GOP can avoid blame.

Speaking to McConnell in the midst of Capitol Hill interviews, Paul says if Republicans were to pivot from de-funding President Obama's health care law to seeking an overall "compromise" the GOP will "win this."

McConnell can be heard concurring with Paul that it is bad politics for Democrats to say they won't negotiate, but a recent CBS News survey shows most Americans are still blaming the GOP for the shutdown.

Watch:

It is certainly a raw politics moment for Kentucky's two U.S. senators, who have forged an alliance in recent years.

The campaign to elect U.S. Senate Democratic candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes is pouncing on the conversation, calling it a cynical approach in the face of the shutdown's real world impact.

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Politics
10:57 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Senators Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul Say Kentucky Not Buying Obamacare

U.S. Senators Mitch McConnell (l) and Rand Paul (r)
Credit U.S. Senate

In a rebuttal to Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear's editorial praising the Affordable Care Act, Republican U.S. Sens. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul argue Kentucky isn't buying into the president's health care law.

The health exchange dubbed Kynect launched on Tuesday allowing residents to shop for an insurance plan as part of the federal law, better known as Obamacare.

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Politics
1:43 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Two Kentucky Lawmakers Highlight Government Shutdown's Effects on Kentucky Women

Mary Lou Marzian
Credit Legislative Research Commission

Kentucky state Reps. Joni Jenkins and Mary Lou Marzian are highlighting the effects of the federal government shutdown on women.

The two Democrats were in Washington, D.C., this week meeting with lawmakers and hope Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell will keep those adverse impacts in mind as potential negotiations begin.

"Certainly the furloughing of employees—half of those or more are going to be single females who are heads of families—and I don't know how many of your listeners can go without paycheck for a day, a week or possibly longer," said Jenkins, whose district covers parts of western Jefferson County. "That money not coming into our communities is going to trickle down to all sorts of businesses."

Beyond federal workers there is growing concern about social services that could be impacted.

Almost 9 million new mothers and young children rely on programs such as the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children or WIC. But federal officials have warned funding for WIC could run out in the next week or so.

Observers expect the shutdown to last at least that long even as President Obama is inviting congressional leaders, including McConnell, to the White House Wednesday afternoon to possibly negotiate.

Marzian says the shutdown is a disaster for women on a number of fronts and low-income mothers in particular, adding the blame should be on Tea Party-backed Republicans in the House.

"It's going to really effect women being able to feed their families and pay their rent as these programs run out of money in the next weeks," she says. "But the Tea Party and these right-wing Republicans care nothing about women and children. They only care about themselves and pushing their agenda forward. However, they care about fetuses but once you’re here you’re on your own."

Last year, over 132,000 pregnant women and new mothers in Kentucky received nutrition assistance through WIC programs for their young children.

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Politics
2:59 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer Blames 'Extreme' GOP Wing for Government Shutdown

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer

Calling it Washington, D.C., "silliness," Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is blaming the government shutdown on a faction in the Republican Party, which he argues is holding the country hostage.

The mayor's comments come as federal lawmakers appear to be further entrenched in their positions.

Congress failed to reach a budget deal on Monday to finance the government and certain services.

Earlier Tuesday, the Senate rejected the latest House effort to hold a conference ,and no meetings between President Obama and congressional leaders have been set.

Fischer, a Democrat, joined a chorus of elected officials outside of Washington who are scolding lawmakers over the shutdown and its possible effects on state and local governments.

"If there’s a prolonged shutdown that’s going to affect the confidence of people and that’s not going to be good for business. We do not need to go back into another recession because of this silliness that’s going on in Washington, D.C. right now where people can’t come together on agreement," he says.

This shutdown is the first in nearly two decades, and its biggest impact thus far is the furloughing of around 800,000 federal employees across the country. As of 2011, approximately 9,000 federal employees were working in Louisville, but not all of them will be furloughed if they’re considered essential personnel.

A number of monuments and agencies have already announced their closures, such as the Library of Congress and National Zoo with more expected this week.

In the first day of the shutdown, many lawmakers spent the day trying to avoid taking the political blame.

Speaking on the Senate Tuesday, Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky once again criticized Democrats for killing the fourth measure out of the GOP-controlled House.

"They’ve now said they won’t even agree to sit down and work out our differences. They won’t even talk about it. They literally just voted against working out a compromise," he says.

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