- Grimes "has set aside her folksy, light-hearted television ad series 'Questions for Mitch' in favor of a traditional attack ad, as recent polls show her losing ground in a tight race with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell," writes Sam Youngman of the Lexington Herald-Leader. "McConnell's campaign labeled the ad an attack on the senator's wife, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao, although the ad never makes a direct reference to Chao. Because the ad mentions McConnell's personal wealth, the majority of which was inherited from Chao's family, the McConnell campaign countered that it represented another attack on Chao." The ad says McConnell has become a multi-millionaire in public office; Youngman notes, "The bulk of McConnell's wealth comes from a gift Chao's father, an immigrant-turned-shipping-magnate, gave the couple and an inheritance she received after her mother died in 2007."
- The ad "does try to infer that there might be some misbehavior or some misuse of his position," Kentucky Gazette Editor Laura Cullen Glasscock said on KET's "Comment on Kentucky" Friday night. (She meant "imply," not "infer," which is what viewers may do.) Panelist Ronnie Ellis of CNHI News said, "The underlying thing they want to get across is that he has become a creature of Washington and has lost touch with hard-working, blue-collar Kentuckians." Glasscock added, " . . . that he's not one of us, doesn't represent the citizen any more."
- Ellis said the McConnell campaign's response is another indication that it may make an issue of Grimes's father, former state Democratic chair Jerry Lundergan. He noted that McConnell told Lana Bellamy of CHNI's Ashland Daily Independent, "If Jerry Lundergan were my father I'd be careful about bringing family into this." Noting Lundergan's 1987 conviction, for doing business with the state while a state legislator, which was overturned because it was later ruled a misdemeanor and the statute of limitations had run, Ellis said, "I think there's a very good chance were going to see that, then Grimes could respond at Chao." WHAS-TV's Joe Arnold noted that such attacks could be done by allied groups that are legally required to act independently of the campaigns.
- Also on "Comment," Arnold reported that the McConnell and Grimes campaigns have had their first "face to face meeting" to discuss debates. "Comment" airs again at 12:30 p.m. ET Sunday, and Monday on KET KY at 8 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. ET.
Saturday, August 16, 2014
McConnell calls Grimes ad an attack on Chao; could set up attack on Lundergan; camps talk debates
The weekend conversation is mainly about Alison Lundergan Grimes's new TV spot: