Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Roundup for Wednesday, May 21

Post-primary stories abound. Here are some of interest:
    • Matt Bevin didn't mention Mitch McConnell's name in his concession speech, in which he kept complaining about "lies" told about him, but McConnell campaign manager Jesse Benton tells Nick Storm of cn|2's "Pure Politics" that "Mr. Bevin called and gave a very classy call to Senator McConnell; we feel like this party is uniting already," and noted that McConnell and Sen. Rand Paul will campaign together in Louisville on Friday. (Story includes video of candidate speeches)
    • Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post says McConnell's primary win reminded him of five important rules: "Candidates matter" (Bevin's message roamed); the best expenditure is a good opposition researcher (and Bevin seemed unprepared for the attack; "Be prepared" (McConnell "took Bevin extremely seriously"); "Co-opt the opposition" (McConnell got Sen. Rand Paul to endorse him and hired his campaign-manager in-law); and "beating incumbents is very, very hard."
    • In a video segment, Cilizza analyzes Grimes' victory speech and her use of gender and says the key to victory for her is "to win suburban, Republican-leaning women away from Mitch McConnell. How do you do that? By making gender a big issue."
    • Seth McLaughlin of The Washington Times writes, "Bevin failed to gain much traction against the deep-rooted incumbent, thanks to a combination of rookie missteps and a barrage of spending from the McConnell camp and its allies."
    • WDRB-TV commentator John David Dyche opines, "Bevin's concession speech was his campaign's best moment. . . . Grimes got by a trio of token foes who spent almost nothing, but her numbers in several traditionally Democratic coal counties of Eastern Kentucky portend bad things" for her.
    • Former state Treasurer Jonathan Miller, a Democrat who also ran for Congress and governor, predicts on The Daily Beast that Grimes will beat McConnell because she "has run a steadfastly solid campaign" and become "a dynamic and disciplined candidate," and "McConnell is to many swing Kentucky voters the very symbol of everything that’s wrong with politics."
    • "The Morning Line" from PBS "NewsHour" says yesterday's results around the country boosted Republican hopes of taking over the Senate, which would make McConnell majority leader (presuming he wins the caucus vote after the Nov. 4 election, which seems assured). The PBS Politics page also shows McConnell's campaign theme, unveiled in Paul's introduction of his seatmate last night:

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