Monday, June 23, 2014

June 23 roundup: Grimes works the Purchase, McConnell uses pro-coal rider to block another bill

Go west, young woman, go west:
  • Murray Ledger & Times writer John Wright reports on Friday's Jefferson-Jackson Dinner in Murray, at which Alison Lundergan Grimes' opening remarks may have left the incorrect impression that it was Sen. Mitch McConnell who disparaged her with a gender reference: "I am the Kentucky woman who my Republican colleague so gentlemanly referred to as an empty dress, that seeks to retire Mitch McConnell." The "colleague" was Brad Dayspring, communications director for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, who applied the term to Grimes last September. Grimes "received a rousing ovation upon entering the Curris Center Ballroom," Wright reports. "From there, she exchanged seemingly limitless handshakes and hugs from the nearly 300 people who came from throughout the area."
  • Associated Press correspondent Adam Beam reports that Grimes toured Kentucky's four westernmost counties Saturday "with the hopes of cutting into what has become a Republican advantage in federal elections." Voters there don't like President Obama, Bardwell City Councilwoman Kay Presson told him, adding, "She's one of his main supporters and I do not like Obama." But Carlisle County Ambulance Director Wayne Floyd said he was switching from McConnell to Grimes because she "has a real touch with the rural community. . . . I feel like she's got Western Kentucky at her heart." Beam writes, "Grimes has been spending a lot of time – and money – to portray herself as a strong, independent voice in a partisan Washington environment. McConnell has said a vote for Grimes is a vote for Democratic control of the Senate and a vote for President Obama's agenda."
  • McConnell's effort to tack pro-coal language onto two spending bills has put them in jeopardy, Ed O'Keefe of The Washington Times reports. "Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) planned to require any amendment to pass with a super majority of 60 votes," O'Keefe writes. "McConnell objected, saying that the rules would make it impossible for Republicans to seek changes to the spending bills." McConnell wants to set tough conditions for Obama's proposed rules limiting carbon dioxide from coal-fired power plants; Obama has said he would veto any bill with the measure attached.

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