Mitch McConnell

Politics
12:44 pm
Thu April 11, 2013

Source: Progress Kentucky Behind Mitch McConnell Campaign Recording

Credit U.S. Senate

A secret recording of a campaign strategy session between U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and his advisors was taped by leaders of the Progress Kentucky super PAC, says a longtime local Democratic operative.

Mother Jones Magazine released the tape this week. The meeting itself took place on Feb. 2.

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Environment
6:55 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

McConnell Says EPA Nominee Will Foster "Radical Anti-Coal Jobs Agenda"

McConnell meets with EPA Administrator nominee Gina McCarthy in his office on Tuesday, April 09, 2013
Sen. Mitch McConnell's office

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's already been in the news a few times today, but here's one more story from an environmental perspective: McConnell says President Obama's nominee for Environmental Protection Agency Administrator will be detrimental to Kentucky's coal industry.

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Politics
3:47 pm
Tue April 9, 2013

McConnell Accuses Progress Kentucky of Bugging Campaign HQ, Spokesman Backpedals

Senator Mitch McConnell
Credit Kenny Colston / Kentucky Public Radio

Speaking to reporters in Washington, D.C., Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell blamed the liberal Super PAC Progress Kentucky of bugging his campaign offices.

On Tuesday, Mother Jones released a recording of a private meeting between McConnell and his campaign aides discussing attacks on potential challengers, including actress Ashley Judd's struggles with depression.

The McConnell campaign has said it contacted the FBI and U.S. Attorney to look into charges of eavesdropping. But McConnell went further during a press conference and alluded to Progress, which attacked the ethnicity of the GOP leader's wife in a series of Tweets earlier this year.

"As you know last month my wife’s ethnicity was attacked by a left-wing group in Kentucky and then apparently they also bugged my headquarters. So I think that pretty well sums up the way the political left is operating in Kentucky," McConnell said.

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Politics
9:47 am
Tue April 9, 2013

Mother Jones Obtains Secret Tape of McConnell Campaign Strategy Session

Senator Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
Credit File photo

A secret audio recording of Senator Mitch McConnell's re-election campaign reveals the Kentucky Republican's aides intended to target actress Ashley Judd's mental health and religious beliefs among other issues.

The news magazine Mother Jones obtained audio of a private meeting between McConnell and aides where much of the conversation focused on potential Democratic opponents.

In a 2011 memoir, "All That is Bitter and Sweet"  Judd recounted she had checked into rehab for depression as an adult and once considered suicide as a child.

The leaked tapes reveal Judd's bouts with depression were considered fair game by the McConnell campaign.

"This sounds extreme, but she is emotionally unbalanced," an unknown McConnell aide says on the recording. "I mean it’s been documented. Jesse can go in chapter and verse from her autobiography about, you know, she’s suffered some suicidal tendencies. She was hospitalized for 42 days when she had a mental breakdown in the '90s."

Listen:

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Politics
5:02 pm
Sun April 7, 2013

Noise and Notes: With Ashley Judd Out, Where Do Kentucky Democrats Go From Here?

Alison Lundergan Grimes, Mitch McConnell and Ashley Judd

Now that Ashley Judd is out, Kentucky Democrats are scrambling for a legitimate contender to take on Republican Senator Mitch McConnell next year.

The speculation is on Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, whose every word is being examined.

But what if Grimes also forgoes a 2014 Senate bid?

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Politics
4:05 pm
Tue April 2, 2013

Liberal Group Politicizes Kevin Ware Injury, Petitions NCAA for Athlete Health Care

Louisville basketball player Kevin Ware suffers a broken leg
Credit usmagazine.com

A liberal group is launching a petition asking the NCAA be required to provide universal health care for student athletes in the wake of a shocking leg injury to Louisville men's basketball player Kevin Ware.

Ware suffered a compound fracture of his right leg on Sunday during the Cardinals's game against Duke in the Elite Eight.

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee points out the NCAA makes $780 million per year off college athletes, but does not guarantee full payment of medical bills for injuries.

Louisville’s basketball program is also the most profitable in the country, raking in $40 million in revenue annually with a projected $23 to $28 million in profit.

The Ware injury has gained national media attention, but is has also put the spotlight on how college athletes aren't protected and universities aren't legally obligated to take care of players once they're hurt.

From The New York Times:

University officials say they go out of their way to inform students about the limits of insurance. Yet the situation has confused and frustrated athletes and their families, some of whom have had to shoulder large and unexpected medical bills.

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Politics
12:45 pm
Mon April 1, 2013

Ashley Judd Adviser Says Kentucky Democrats Helped Push Her Out

Actress Ashley Judd
Credit Salon

Former Kentucky treasurer Jonathan Miller is blaming fellow state Democrats for helping push actress Ashley Judd out of the upcoming U.S. Senate race.

Judd announced last week she is declining to run against Republican Mitch McConnell in 2014, citing a need to focus on family. The speculation on other reasons why Judd isn't making a bid are plentiful, but supporters are speaking up.

In an editorial, Miller says a "dizzying blur of false testimony" promoted by a handful of Democratic consultants and strategists in national stories was part of the reason Judd declined.

From The Daily Beast:

While many may legitimately believe that (Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan) Grimes is the better candidate, many of those who have been quoted impugning Judd, or have done so on background, also have personal motives: some stand to profit from a Grimes campaign, some may have been trying to redress perceived “disses” by the actress, and some may be aiming to keep Grimes out of the 2015 gubernatorial race, where she could undermine their preferred candidates.

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Politics
11:20 am
Thu March 28, 2013

Democrats Run 'Sweet 16' Style Radio Ad Against Mitch McConnell

Credit DSCC.org

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is launching a basketball-themed radio ad targeting U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., ahead of his beloved Louisville Cardinal's Sweet 16 game.

The spot begins airing Thursday and uses a faux play-by-play commentary describing how  McConnell  "scores for Washington special interests and himself" while blocking economic policies that would help Kentucky.

Listen:

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Politics
5:22 pm
Wed March 27, 2013

Ashley Judd Says on Twitter That She's Not Running for U.S. Senate

Ashley Judd
Credit U.S. Navy

Actress Ashley Judd is not running for U.S. Senate in Kentucky next year

The actress writes via Twitter:

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Politics
5:00 pm
Fri March 22, 2013

Congressman Thomas Massie Advises Tea Party Critics to Lay Off Senator Mitch McConnell

Congressman Thomas Massie
Credit U.S. Congress

Kentucky Republican Congressman Thomas Massie is advising Tea Party activists to think twice before waging a primary challenge to Senator Mitch McConnell next year.

The freshman lawmaker was heavily backed by the Tea Party in his race for the Fourth Congressional District seat last year. 

Massie is often mentioned as a potential 2014 Senate candidate, and has flexed a level of independence from the GOP establishment. He voted against Speaker John Boehner and recently opposed the Ryan budget plan because it wasn't conservative enough.

But Massie has repeatedly turned down offers to run and told reporters on multiple occasions he isn’t interested.

And in an interview with WFPL, he says Tea Party activists in Kentucky who want to continue to have an impact on national politics should reconsider their opposition to McConnell.

"My advice to people who are frustrated with Washington is that there’s probably a better way to spend your time, effort, money, blood, sweat and tears than trying to have Senator McConnell unelected. I think there are a lot better chances and better use of your time in terms of changing Washington, D.C.," he says.

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