Skip to comments.Will Tea Partiers Sink Mitch McConnell’s Kentucky Senate Reelection Bid?
Posted on 08/04/2014 5:54:42 AM PDT by Maceman
The Senate minority leader, long reviled among many on the right for what they see as kowtowing to Democrats, is in a tough race for his seatand in trouble with the Tea Party.
If Alison Lundergan Grimes pulls off an upset victory over Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in November, she may have Tea Partiers to thank. But dont expect conservative voters to rally to Grimesthey simply aren't getting behind McConnell.
Although the five-term Republican ended up winning a a tough primary challenge from businessman Matt Bevin handily, the race was one of the most vicious and ugly this cycle, with Bevins campaign badly damaged in a cockfighting scandal. And while some disaffected conservatives have backed McConnell in November, Bevin has still not endorsed him, and many of the Tea Party groups that supported the businessman are following suit. As a result, in a recent poll, nearly 20% of self-identified Republicans didn't support McConnell
Scott Hofstra, spokesman for the United Kentucky Tea Party, said he isnt backing McConnell and taking the lesser of the two evils approach. Many conservatives, Hofstra predicted, either will leave the box on the ballot for U.S. Senate empty or will vote for David Patterson, the libertarian candidate. The senator has alienated many Tea Partiers and has yet to reach out to bridge the gap, Hofstra said. The divide was opened further, he added, by McConnells open support for Thad Cochran in the Mississippi Senate runoff and McConnells association with pro-Cochran ads that many conservatives assailed as race-baiting. If there were some people on the fence after what happened in Kentucky, the Mississippi incident really put them over the edge, Hofstra said. Still, he noted that Tea Party dissatisfaction with McConnell wasnt winning Grimes their votes. I havent talked to anybody who would vote her.
Andrew Schachtner, president of the Louisville Tea Party and a former Bevin campaign staffer, sounded somewhat more restrained than Hofstra in his comments to The Daily Beast. He said his group was focusing on state and local issues instead of the Senate race. In particular, he said, the Louisville Tea Party was prioritizing a local state house candidate to help Republicans gain control of the Kentucky House of Representatives. As for the McConnell-Grimes race, Schachtner said he had decided whom he would vote for but declined to disclose that candidates identity.
Its not just Grimes who stands to benefit from Tea Party doubts about McConnell. Patterson, a policeman from the central Kentucky town of Harrodsburg, is seeking to get on the ballot as the Libertarian candidate. A recent poll put Patterson at 7 percent in the race and poised to be a spoiler. In an interview with The Daily Beast, Patterson said he felt confident that his team would get the necessary signatures and noted that he was already preparing in advance for any legal challenge.
Although McConnell has had a slight edge over Grimes in recent polls, most political observers consider the race a tossup, and it looks likely to be tight through Election Day.
But Patterson said that at the moment he is not directly appealing to disaffected Tea Partiers. While he said his campaign will definitely appeal to those who are absolutely fed up with the way McConnell has been voting in D.C., the Libertarian was aiming to attract those voters who feel disenfranchised by the two-party system. While he took pains to say he wasnt modeling his campaign after anybody, he mentioned Gary Johnsons presidential campaign as a possible inspiration: more fiscally conservative than the Republicans and more socially accepting than the Democrats.
Yet despite lingering anger over the primary and the potential appeal of Patterson, some Tea Partiers are rallying around McConnell. Frank Simon of the Tea Party of Kentucky said he is very much for McConnell over Grimes Politics is always the lesser of two evils. McConnell is always much better than Grimes. Grimes is pro-abortion. But Simon said he couldnt speak for all the Tea Parties. Instead, his groups approach is to try to make friends with people, because thats the only way were going to survive, he said. Were trying to overlook problems that we had before and trying to pull together to survive November.
Simon said the bulk of his groups efforts would involve a voter guide that was put out not under this organization but through a political action committee and another organization, which would go out to about 30,000 people. He told The Daily Beast that unless something unforeseen happens, it will endorse McConnell over Grimes. The bulk of the voter guides will go out through churches, which is allowed, he said, because it also gives the pro-abortion endorsements, pro-homosexual endorsements, pro-labor endorsements.
In the past I voted for McCain, and Romney nationally, and for Scott Brown in Massachusetts. But I guess it depends on your belief in how far gone this nation is, and what it will take to restore it, assuming that is even possible at this point.
Personally, I now believe that the only way to save this nation now (assuming such a thing is still possible) is to put conservatives in political offices and enact an agenda based on free markets, limited government and the rule of law. As long as we have a Republican party that actively opposes those ends (and we do, obviously), then I believe our only (slim) hope is drastic action.
As long as the Republican Party establishment believes that it can continue to survive by being Democrat-lite, and that it can continue to maintain power while actively fighting against the core principles of liberty, free markets and Constitutional law, it will never make the necessary change of direction.
Only when the Republican party understands that it must change or die can we hope to turn this country around. Our too-long-serving entrenched establishment politicians can still enjoy their comfy lifestyles, their wealth, power and prestige as members of a minority party. So why should they bother to change direction?
Surely a John Boehner (or an Eric Cantor -- had he not been defeated -- or a Mitch McConnell) would be just as happy to be minority leaders if the election cycle didn't go their way. Yes, they would prefer to be majority leaders, but what good would it be to them if a conservative Republican Party won the majority and then threw them out of their cushy positions and all those perks, replacing them with real conservatives?
Ask yourself -- which do you think Mitch McConnell would prefer -- a majority Republican party in which he was stripped of his position by a conservative majority, or a minority Republican party in which he could remain Senate minority leader because the majority of Republican senators were RINOs?
You may argue that we have no time to wait for the Republicans to realize that their only choice is to change or die as a viable party. But if we don't have time for that, then what makes you think we have time to wait for the RINOs and the GOP-e to pursue a "moderately marginal" course of action designed only to maintain their personal fiefdoms at the expense of a free America operating under the rule of Constitutional law?
The GOP had majority power in the House and Senate, and occupied the White House, 10 years ago. What did all that power do to move the agenda of liberty forward? Answer: nothing.
A GOP that cannot even sell liberty, limited governments and free markets to the American people is worse than useless. It is a party of tyranny enablers, and I will have none of it.
Unbelievably, today we are facing once again the stark choice between liberty and death.
Once again, these are the times that try men's souls. Conservatives need to be waging aggressive war against the totalitarian leftist tyrants on all fronts -- in the branches of government at the federal and state level, in academia, in the media, through public demonstrations, and in the voting booth.
Many argue that we must continued to vote for "the most electable conservative," which means "vote for the RINO if no conservative is running." But I respectfully disagree with that choice. I am done enabling.
If we really are to lose the greatest country in the history of the world, then let's at least be fighting for it when it goes down.
And who knows, maybe -- just maybe, if we show sufficient resolve and conviction -- divine Providence will once again provide the support that gave our founders their unlikely victory in 1776, and grant us once again the "new birth of freedom" that Lincoln called for a century later.
The GOP-wing of the Democrat Party has to be made to understand that they are no longer in charge.
I hope that Grimes cleans Mitch’s clock for what he has done...
Truth be told, the EXEMPT McConnell COULD on any day
have turned it around going against the Tyrant.
But he never did.
The EXEMPT McConnell went after ... conservatives.
I am honestly surprised McConnell hasn’t made some effort to mend bridges with the base. I think the GOP is testing the waters this cycle to see if they can get enough votes with independents, and nose holding conservatives to disown their base.
Will Tea Partiers Sink Mitch McConnells Kentucky Senate Reelection Bid?
Man, I hope we do.
If you want to make an omelet you have to crack a few eggs.
The GOP-wing of the Democrat Party has to be made to understand that they are no longer in charge.
“Will Tea Partiers Sink Mitch McConnells Kentucky Senate Reelection Bid?”
As usual, when a bad guy (McConnell) gets pointed out, and good guys (Tea Party) does something about it, the good guys are suddenly painted as the bad people.
uhmm... maybe the article should be if independent and democrates who voted for him in primaries are going to sink him. There are many more such fraud voters who turn coat on him than conservatives.
this is unreal the schizophrenia.
Aaahhh, Arrogance and stupidity in one package, how efficient!
Ambassador Londo Mollari, 2263
GOPe encouraged party-line-crossing in Missouri.
I recommend conservatives return the favor and vote Democrat against McConnel.
Until the GOPe loses because of conservatism, they will not listen.
The sit at home “conservative purists” gave us 4 more years of nobama in 2012 and now you want to do the same and guarantee the dems keep the Senate?
This purist stance is going to end up killing instead of curing America.
Where were you during the Kentucky Primary? Did you stongly support Bevins with your time and money? Obviously not near enough did.
While dumping Mitch might be emotionally gratifying, doesn’t look like its going to happen based on the polls I’ve seen...
Mitch has taken the lead in polling and widening it.
Article reads more like wishful thinking than reality at this point.
No doubt he’s angered part of his base, but the idea the libertarian candidate is going to play spoiler for sour grapism isn’t currently being played out. We’ll see in November.
The Tea Party won't be responsible for Mitch McConnell losing.
Mitch McConnell himself will be responsible for his loss (should that happen.)
Fact is, Mitch McConnell's "go along to get along" with Dirty Harry Reid over the last 10 years or so will be his undoing.
Bevin was another not ready for prime time player that the Tea Party put up and got crushed... Don’t have to like McConnell, but if you expect to take him down you have to do better than Bevin.
Internet ads mocking him for looking like a turtle might make the converted excited, but are going to turn off most from even listening to you.
That was probably the absolutely dumbest thing I had seen in a long time.. if his campaign wasn’t over before that ad, it was guaranteed done after.
I agree, if he goes down it will be by his own hand, but the odds of him going down in November, are to me wishful thinking and sour grapes.
Time will tell, but based on the fact he’s actually improving in every poll that’s come out so far, its hard to imagine he’s going to be sent packing.
McConnell declared war on the TEA Party by saying his goal was to “crush” it. Now he wants pity and votes from conservatives. He’s the Hamas of the GOP.
McConnell has got to go. Period.
It’s unfortunate that he wasn’t kicked out already 6 years ago, then we’d probably have a real viable candidate against Grimes.
Exactly! The time for this fight was in the Primary.
These “self proclaimed” Tea Party orgs are proving they pick the wrong people and then don’t have the strength to back them sufficiently. They don’t have us grassroots Tea Party voter’s backing because many are wildeyed libertarian anarchist types who are “self appointed Tea Party leaders” who none of us grassroots folks asked for nor approved of.
Will you be voting for Grimes? Or neither?
The Supreme Court. The Supreme Court. The Supreme Court. This is our Supreme Court:
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 81
Antonin Scalia, 78
Anthony Kennedy, 78
Stephen Breyer, 75
Clarence Thomas, 66
Samuel Alito, 64
Sonia Sotomayor, 60
John Roberts, 59
Elena Kagan, 54
Ginsburg is not retiring this year, but she could retire next year and a Senate Controlled by Democrats could confirm a liberal justice who would hold a place for 30 more years. If Scalia or Kennedy pass away in Obama’s last two years, the Court could have a liberal majority for the next 25 years.
Are we supposed to wait until 2040 for the great conservative take-over? Anything that may leave control of the Senate in the hands of Democrats is absolutely asinine. Conservatives can’t win by losing. Conservatives need to win elections. And, a weak Republican who will caucus with conservatives is always going to be better than a liberal majority in the Senate.
Ahhhhh, a fan of BAB5! d:^)
I watched the movie this line is from just the other night. They do not make TV shows as they once did.
Will you be voting for Grimes? Or neither?
You touch on an important point: the old saying that if you’re going to take a shot at the king, be sure to kill him.
Given the poll numbers, and McConnell’s past track record at defeating challengers, it’s looking like he’s going to win. By a comfortable margin too, if the trending persists.
The result will be a GOP leader, possibly a Senate Majority leader, who won in spite of Conservatives. Not because of them. That’s not a good position to be in, effectively locking the Tea Party out from having any influence, at all, at least through the next cycle and possibly beyond.
Remember what Alinsky said about political action: pick a target, freeze it, personalize it and polarize it. Then look at what Mark Levin said about picking one GOP Senate race each cycle and targeting the incumbent for removal.
IMHO for 2014 that race should be Mississippi. It’s a much more egregious situation, and therefore much more ripe for using to send a message.
With all due respect, and I mean that, I think there is a bigger picture.
If you reward bad behavior, you get more of it. The RINOs have managed to own the Republican party because they know that conservatives have nowhere else to go.
Your approach is playing right into that strategy. The RINOs have become so certain of your vote that they actually believe they can continued to stay in power by declaring outright war on the conservative base.
And when they do that, they are actually declaring war on America -- war on liberty, war on free market economics, and even war on the Constitution.
The RINO Republicans cannot even make an appeal to the traditional American love of those principles, because they have lost the credibility and historical awareness to articulate them, let alone promote them.
Yes, having Harry Reid continue as speaker is a horrific scenario. But having RINO Republicans win that office is only a marginally better short-term outcome.
And in some ways it is even worse, because as they reach across the aisle" to promote Democrat policies, they give the Democrats cover from the well-deserved blame that they have unleashed on our country for the last five years.
America is out of time now. We cannot continue on the current path. And as things continue to deteriorate, who do you think the voters will blame if the Republicans are in power when the 2016 elections come around?
You think Mitch McConnell's senate will repeal Obamacare? You think it will take the right position on immigration?
America needs clear, passionate and articulate voices to advocate and defend our founding principles, to secure our borders, to preserve our nation, and to take legislative and administrative steps to turn this country around, assuming it still can be turned around.
Majority leader Mitch McConnell will NEVER provide that voice or leadership. He is not the guy to turn things around for our formerly blessed nation.
But in 2016 a newly terrified Republican will be forced to court instead of alienate the conservative base, and come 2017 will be in a position to put the party and our nation on the proper path. Such a duly chastised party has a real chance of nominating a Ted Cruz, instead of a Mitt Romney who, according to last night's panel on Fox News, is at this point the likely Republican presidential nominee.
So in November, I urge those who vote in Kentucky to stay home on election day, or vote libertarian -- anything to prove the RINOs wrong in thinking that they can stay in power by literally declaring war on conservatism.
Think about it.
What the Dems are doing is playing to a lot of crass stereotypes on what motivates Conservatives to vote.
Witness the picture of Grimes aiming that scoped hunting rifle while wearing a tight white tank top and jeans. Definitely playing up the SILF factor.
Then this weekend you have a Grimes surrogate who started taunting McConnell for having an Asian wife. Sure the surrogate backpeddled under mass Democrat condemnations, but that only served to get the taunting more coverage and traction in the press ...
What would you call running an ad accusing McConnell and the republicans of taking $750 billion out of medicare? Or one accusing Mitch and the republicans as being responsible for the loss of coal jobs? How about belonging to a party that denigrates him because he married an Asian? Or maybe you prefer a candidate that 100% supports obamacare and abortion on demand. I detest McConnell, but next to Alison, he looks like a saint. We had our chance to replace him in the primary and failed. Trading him for a younger, more radical Harry Reid won't solve anything.
But Conservatives MUST get behind him. Alison Grimes would be an absolute national disaster.
Chris McDaniel...different story. He is worth fighting for, and defeating Thad Cochran over.
It’s pretty obvious that once elected, she would hold that seat forever, like a Patty Murray or Barb Miskulski.
"Is freedom anything else than the right to live as we wish?
There is no mending. McConnell funded those ads in Mississippi accusing the Tea Party of racism. There is no forgiveness. He needs to go.
Be prepared, the GOPe apologists are out in full force today. I think Reince promised extra bonus checks this weekend.
With all due respect, if a person joins the forces of “evil” to help that “evil” defeat the forces of the “insufficiently perfect”, then that person is really NOT promoting “perfection”.
That person is promoting “evil”.
Such people are called “useful idiots” precisely because they do NOT promote the virtue or perfection they imagine. Their actions promote “evil”, just as much as if they were, in fact, well-paid Obama-campaign-funded trolls.
It seems that you are willing to help Obama appoint Eric Holder as our next Supreme Court Justice.
IMHO, you need to ask yourself what “message” THAT tragic defeat for America would convey to patriots — and to the world.
Because we are doing So Well with Republican-Democrats. So which one of Obama's Judicial nominees did McConnell NOT vote for?
“As usual, when a bad guy (McConnell) gets pointed out, and good guys (Tea Party) does something about it, the good guys are suddenly painted as the bad people.”
Take candy from babies and they cry. Sometimes a parent has to do that, or the baby gets sick.
That’s what parenting (leadership) is all about.
You think this is sour grapes? Is that what you call it when a member of your own party deliberately targets you as a racist?
This is way beyond sour grapes, this is a deadly threat to our existence.
It's not about Bevin, it's about McDaniel, and what Mitch McConnell paid for in Mississippi. He put a dagger in our back, and probably cost us that Senate seat as well.