Monday, September 15, 2014

Roundup: Bill Clinton blasts McConnell in Iowa; Post downgrades race to tie for last among possible flips

If the candidates don't make news, their friends and observers will . . .
  • Former president Bill Clinton, who has made two campaign trips in Kentucky for Alison Lundergan Grimes, took it to Iowa yesterday, letting loose on Sen. Mitch McConnell at retiring Sen. Tom Harkin's last annual steak fry. He ridiculed McConnell's statement at a meeting of major Republican funders that "the worst day of my political life" was in 2001, when a law putting new limits on campaign finance was signed. Mentioning 9/11 and "the financial meltdown," he said of McConnell: "And what about in his native Kentucky? Seventy percent of the coal miners losing their jobs before the EPA ever said a word, with no strategy to put them back to work in other ways? How could you possibly say that the worst thing that ever happened to you was not being able to black-bag unlimited amounts of money in politics, when all of these things happened to Americans?" Jim Carroll's Courier-Journal story is here.
  • The Washington Post has again downgraded the Kentucky Senate rate in its occasional ranking based on the estimated likelihood that a seat will change parties. It is now tied for last among the top 12 races. Under the bylines of Chris Cillizza, Aaron Blake and Sean Sullivan, the Post reports: "A look at the polling of late in the race . . . suggests that the incumbent has opened up a mid-single-digit lead. That agrees with what strategists are seeing in unreleased data. McConnell’s team always insisted that once he united Republicans behind his candidacy, the numbers would shift toward him."

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