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It’s Not Just Mitchell McConnell’s Chin That’s Looking Weak

May 29, 2013

Things are not looking good for MitchMitch McConnell’s operation went hard and heavy against “Hollywood liberal” Ashley Judd when she was mulling a run against him.  We should probably expect more of the same treatment for any potential challenger going forward. Polling continues to suggest that dissuading any competition looks to be Mitch’s best hope of hanging on to his seat. This is in deep red Kentucky, mind you, and there’ s bad news for Mitch against another unannounced Democratic candidate:

A new Public Policy Polling survey of Kentucky finds Mitch McConnell and Alison Lundergan Grimes tied in a hypothetical match up at 45%. McConnell’s early positive advertising has done nothing to improve his prospects for reelection and in fact this is the actually the weakest position PPP has found him in yet. In April we found him leading Grimes by 4 points and in December he had a 7 point advantage over her. [PPP]

You see, with an approval rating hovering in the 30’s, McConnell is the least popular senator in the country. Besides dirty tricks from his campaign staff targeting an unannounced Judd two years before the election, McConnell’s response has been to position himself as a roadblock for Democratic policy. Thing is, polling shows it’s his Republican policy positions that may just do him in:

There are strong indications within the poll results that McConnell’s record on key issues will give him trouble getting reelected. 50% of voters say they’re less likely to cast their ballots for him because of his support for cuts to Social Security and Medicare, compared to only 23% who consider that a positive. And 48% say McConnell’s opposition to increasing the minimum wage makes them less likely to vote for him, while just 27% say more likely. [PPP]

What can Mitch do? The kind of high-profile campaign he ran against Judd probably won’t happen, as Graves just doesn’t lend herself to the fund-raising potential of an elite Hollyweird liberal unafraid to publicly call herself a feminist. Still, McConnell has to be looking over his shoulder and sweating bullets. That goes a long way to explaining the ad ‘Team Mitch’ released today, which seeks to exploit the IRS scandal. Unfortunately, it’s also full of lies and deception…

“I think that the leader of the free world and his advisers have better things to do than to dig through other people’s tax returns,” McConnell says in the video, apparently working under the assumption that voters in Kentucky are easily fooled into believing nonsense. (The president never dug through anyone’s tax returns, and doesn’t appear to have had anything to do with the IRS’s tax-exempt office in Cincinnati.)

But it’s the message in the closing seconds that arguably matters most: as the video ends, and viewers see the words “Intimidation. Retaliation. Secretive” on screen, we hear the president say, “We’re going to punish our enemies and reward our friends.”

And that’s a problem, not because Obama said something outrageous, but because McConnell is taking the president wildly out of context in order to mislead the public.

[Steve Benen – Maddow Blog]

That’s some pretty weak sauce for a weak candidate. By demagoguing rather than working to make government functional again, McConnell continues to feed voters’ perception that he’s part of the problem. And that continues to be a big problem for Mitch.

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 29, 2013 4:48 pm

    Reblogged this on Leaning Left and commented:

    Things are getting ugly in Kentucky.

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