Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Post-election roundup for primary day, May 20

Some of the national stories on the 2014 Senate primary results:
  • Politico.com gives readers results of the primary with Alison Lundergan Grimes with just under 77 percent of Democratic votes and Sen. Mitch McConnell with just over 60 percent of Republican votes. McConnell's defeat of Matt Bevin "is a boost to the GOP establishment on a night that is expected to favor that wing of the party and incumbents generally, James Hohmann writes.
  • Jonathan Martin, chief political writer for The New York Timessays McConnell's win "underscored one of the main lessons emerging from the young primary season: Even in an era of deep dissatisfaction with Washington, political fundamentals like candidate strength, fund-raising and incumbency remain paramount."
  • Fox News Politics says McConnell "now faces a November race that is emerging as the toughest in his five-term career."
  • For coverage of the primary by C-SPAN's Steve Scully, including an interview with the Lexington Herald-Leader's Sam Youngman, click here.
  • Adam Beam and Bruce Schreiner of The Associated Press write, "It was another politician who stole the spotlight Tuesday night: Democratic President Barack Obama. In their victory speeches, McConnell and Grimes both invoked the name of the two-term president who has the disapproval of more than 60 percent of Kentucky voters." Grimes said, “Mitch McConnell would have you believe that President Obama is on Kentucky’s 2014 election ballot. Senator McConnell, this race is between you and me.”
  • Philip Rucker and Robert Costa of The Washington Post report that McConnell was "largely unscathed, and conservative groups quickly called for party unity" after opposing him. They also offer "a preview of the vitriol to come," from the candidates' victory speeches:
    McConnell called Grimes “a partisan’s partisan who’s been practicing party politics since she learned to talk” and said “Barack Obama’s candidates preach independence but they practice loyalty above all else. And tonight, I’m confident of this: Kentuckians will not be deceived. Alison Lundergan Grimes is Barack Obama’s candidate.”
    "Grimes came back fighting in her victory speech, delivering a litany of attacks on the Republican leader she labeled 'Senator Gridlock.' She said she is not an empty dress [a term applied to her by a GOP strategist] and 'not a rubber stamp,' but rather a 'strong Kentucky woman' and an 'independent thinker'."
  • Dana Bash, Paul Steinhauser and Rachel Streitfeld of CNN note, "In his concession speech, Bevin didn't back McConnell, but he said he has no intention 'of supporting the Democratic platform over the Republican platform'."
  • Washington Times reporter Seth McLaughlin writes, "Senate Minority Leader McConnell promised to 'crush' the tea party in this primary election, and he did his part by winning a landslide primary victory over Bevin."
  • Francine Kiefer of the Christian Science Monitor asked why a state with more registered Democrats than Republicans and a lot more Democratic governors lately has elected a GOP senator five times. UK's Al Cross answered that "Democrats of heritage" remain in the party "even though their core values are conservative" partly to vote in local elections.

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