Mitch McConnell Campaigns on Ability to Deliver for Kentucky

Image: Mitch McConnell Campaigns on Ability to Deliver for Kentucky

Tuesday, 18 Mar 2014 06:24 AM

By Elliot Jager

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Kentucky's senior Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, who is battling a tea party primary opponent, is emphasizing the influence he wields as a Washington insider – popular sentiment against Congress notwithstanding, The Wall Street Journal reported.

While anti-insider sentiment is strong — just 34 percent of Kentucky voters say incumbent politicians deserve re-election — and 60 percent disapprove of how McConnell has handled his job, 67 percent of the electorate say they'd be more likely to support a candidate who delivers federal largesse to the state.

McConnell is trying to attune to those sentiments. He's not overemphasizing the big money "earmarks" projects he has brought home to Kentucky in the form of dams and funds for universities. Instead, he's playing up the countless subtle ways his congressional clout has benefited residents.

How, for instance, he assisted workers exposed to dangers at the Paducah uranium-enrichment plant, pressured the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to raise the level of a local lake, and propelled a pilot program authorizing Kentucky farmers to grow hemp – an industrial alternative to threatened tobacco.

Supporters point out that McConnell's Washington power enabled him to appoint the farm-bill negotiators involved in that hemp decision, insulated Kentucky tobacco farmers from federal budget cuts, and fought off proposed Obama administration policies that would hamper the local coal industry, the Journal reported.

Turning anti-incumbent sentiment on its head, McConnell is asking voters for support because he's a powerful incumbent.

McConnell, who says he's "a solid conservative," has the backing of the state's Republican establishment, including lawmakers and Kentucky's junior Sen. Rand Paul, as he faces his United Kentucky Tea Party opponent, businessman Matt Bevin.

Polls show McConnell leading Bevin 55 to 29 percent. How he will do against the likely Democratic candidate, Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, is less clear, with some surveys showing them running neck and neck.

With Grimes charging him with "extreme partisanship," and Bevin supporters saying he's too quick to cut bipartisan deals, McConnell is working to show voters that even though he's been in Washington since 1984, he's gotten the balance just right.

Related Stories

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

McSally Win Gives GOP Largest House Majority in 83 Years

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 19:39 PM

Republicans will have their largest U.S. House majority in 83 years when the new Congress convenes next month after a re . . .

Lawyer: Christie Won't be Sued in Bridge Scandal

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 19:13 PM

A lawyer says two lawsuits filed in the apparently politically motivated lane closings of the George Washington Bridge w . . .

Larry Sabato: Jeb Will Have Tougher Road Than Father, Brother

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 17:04 PM

Jeb Bush will have to work a lot harder than either his father or his brother to get to the White House if he throws his . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved