WTAS: Kentucky Farm Bureau Candidate Forum

August 21, 2014
Contact: Allison Moore 502-618-1372

LOUISVILLE – Team Mitch today released the following background document on the press reports following the Kentucky Farm Bureau’s candidate forum on Wednesday.

Politico: “Mitch McConnell more polished at Kentucky forum” (James Hohmann, “Mitch McConnell more polished at Kentucky forum,” Politico, 8/20/14)

Sen. McConnell “Looked Relaxed” And “Well Versed On Agricultural Issues”. “McConnell, 72, looked relaxed and came across as well versed on agricultural issues — dropping a lot of Washington-type jargon and referring to specific provisions in bills to showcase his experience.” (James Hohmann, “Mitch McConnell more polished at Kentucky forum,” Politico, 8/20/14)

By Contrast, Alison Grimes “Sounded Rehearsed” And Mispronounced Omnibus. “Grimes, 35, sounded rehearsed, her answers hewing closely to talking points. The first-term Secretary of State mispronounced the legislative word “omnibus” and overly gestured with her hands, a distracting nervous tick.” (James Hohmann, “Mitch McConnell more polished at Kentucky forum,” Politico, 8/20/14)

After Grimes Attacked Sen. McConnell For Not Reaching Out Across The Aisle, Sen. McConnell Noted The Number Of Deals He’s Made With Vice President Biden. “Thirty years is long enough,” she said. “Kentucky is ready for a senator who can reach out across the aisle.” McConnell countered, joking about spending New Year’s Eve 2012 not with his wife, but Joe Biden, to avert the fiscal cliff. “The only deals that have been made on a bipartisan basis during the Obama years, I’ve brokered,” he said. “Every one of them!” (James Hohmann, “Mitch McConnell more polished at Kentucky forum,” Politico, 8/20/14)

A Democratic Farmer In Attendance Worried About Alison Grimes’ Ties To Obama. “David Chappell, a farmer in Owen County, is a Democrat who has voted for people from both parties and is undecided in this race. He liked Grimes' energy. But he also has worked with McConnell in the past, particularly with the federal buyout for tobacco farmers. He has concerns about Obama's use of executive orders and might affect his opinion of Grimes. "I worry about her ties with Obama, but I understand where (McConnell is) going with the Harry Reid thing," Chappell said. "Politics can act in strange ways in Washington, D.C." (Scott Wartman, “Public gets rare glimpse of McConnell and Grimes spar,” Cincinnati Enquirer, 8/20/14)

Grimes Refused To Answer A Reporter’s Question On How Much Time She’s Missed As Secretary Of State. “When a reporter attempted to ask Grimes after the forum how much time she has missed work as Secretary of State while campaigning, Grimes' press secretary Charly Norton cut the question off and went to another reporter.” (Sam Youngman, “McConnell and Grimes assail each other, talk farm policy at Farm Bureau forum, Herald Leader, 8/20/14)

Grimes Said Crop Insurance Expired Which Is Incorrect. “You see, I've been in the western part of the state and seen the eyes of a burly farmer swell up with tears at the thought of not having crop insurance," Grimes told the audience. But as McConnell's campaign noted, crop insurance is a permanent, mandatory program that does not expire.” (Sam Youngman, “McConnell and Grimes assail each other, talk farm policy at Farm Bureau forum, Herald Leader, 8/20/14)

Grimes Touted A Jobs Plan Without Saying How Much It Would Cost Or Who Would Pay For It. “Grimes also repeatedly touted her jobs plan Wednesday, though she has not said how much it would cost to implement or how she would pay for it. (Sam Youngman, “McConnell and Grimes assail each other, talk farm policy at Farm Bureau forum, Herald Leader, 8/20/14)

Grimes “Essentially Endorsed” Obamacare At The Farm Bureau Forum. “Grimes essentially endorsed the law as it has been implemented in Kentucky by Gov. Steve Beshear… She called for changes to streamline the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, to "make sure there aren't overburdensome regulations," but she largely weighed in in favor of the law.” (Joe Gerth, “Grimes, McConnell trade volleys at farm forum,” Courier-Journal, 8/20/14)

Grimes Made “Her Strongest Defense” Of Obamacare Yet. “Asked about bringing health care to farmers, Grimes made her strongest defense of the Affordable Health Care Act and its benefits. So far, Grimes has kept the federal overhaul at arm’s length and has refused to say if she would have voted for the law.” (Phillip Bailey, “Mitch McConnell, Alison Lundergan Grimes Trade Blows While Discussing Kentucky Farm Policy,” WFPL, 8/20/14)

Grimes Made A “Spirited Defense” Of Obamacare. “Grimes had a bit of a surprise of her own, a more spirited defense of the Affordable Care Act than perhaps she’s offered in the past or might have been expected to offer before the KFB because farm families often must purchase individual insurance and rely on rural hospitals.” (Ronnie Ellis, “Mitch McConnell, Alison Lundergan Grimes state cases at forum,” Glasgow Daily Times, 8/20/14)

Grimes “Struggled” To Give A “Stammering” Answer On Immigration. “Democratic Kentucky Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes struggled to put words together at Kentucky Farm Bureau debate, stammering through a halting condemnation of Republican Senator Mitch McConnell’s support for “piecemeal by piecemeal comprehensive immigration reform”–whatever that is. Here’s the transcript of her garbled remarks: “These and many more–things are what we can accomplish if we had a senator that didn’t just want to do piecemeal by piecemeal comprehensive immigration reform. 30 years, that’s how long Mitch McConnell has been there, and he wants 6 more just to do it–year by year what–many are already doing right now in the United States Senate.” (“What Is Alison Lundergan Grimes Talking About?,” Washington Free Beacon, 8/20/14)

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