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August 31, 2014

AUDIO: Mitch McConnell was psyched about modeling Ron Paul's campaign


Senator Mitch McConnell was psyched about modeling his re-election campaign after Ron Paul's presidential campaign. From. Day. One. Immediately following the launch party of his campaign's Louisville headquarters on February 2, 2013, McConnell met with his (now former) campaign manager Jesse R. Benton, and others to discuss campaign strategy. 

Part of that strategy included adopting techniques Benton had used as manager of Paul's presidential campaign. Here's a never-before-released clip capturing a few moments of McConnell discussing that integration:



David Corn with Mother Jones previously published the majority of the audio I recorded that day, including the opposition research portion of the meeting where McConnell giddily declared his campaign was in the "Whac-A-Mole"-stage. Mother Jones chose a sensible crop of the most audible and relevant segment of the recording, at that time.


But since then, an August 27, 2014 FBI press release announced the guilty plea of former Iowa State Senator Kent Sorenson involving a bribery scandal carried out by Ron Paul's presidential campaign. Benton's subsequent resignation related to the fall-out from that scandal makes McConnell's enthusiasm for, and knowledge of, Ron Paul's campaign strategies extremely relevant. 

So now we know McConnell's campaign was patterned after Ron Paul's, McConnell cannot escape answering questions not only about Benton, but also about his own senate campaign structured in the image of Ron Paul's.

David M. F. Schankula has outlined many relevant questions on BarefootandProgressive.com, but these are suddenly the most relevant:

Have any groups that have endorsed Mitch McConnell been paid to join Team Mitch? 
Have any individuals, be they lawmakers or grassroots organizers, been paid for their endorsement of Mitch McConnell? 
Has any person been offered money by the McConnell campaign or its associates to endorse the McConnell campaign during the run-up to the Republican Primary?

On a scale of 1 to 10, how certain is Mitch McConnell that none of his endorsers have been bribed or illegally incentivized to join his team?
Finally, you have to admit this audio, like McConnell's entire campaign, has comic value. 

From accepting contributions from an 88 year-old descendant of a slave-owning Confederate Colonel that exceeding the legal limit by $2,500, to robocalling Democrats during the primary to warn them Obama was coming for their guns, to using stock photos of Russian fields, to trying to cover up their use of a clip of Duke playing basketball in a commercial, to threatening to have reporter Joe Sonka arrested, to barring blogger Jim Pence from a public meeting, to bragging about crafting the fiscal cliff deal that included $500 million of subsidies to pharmaceutical corporations like Amgen represented by his former Chief of Staff, to finally Friday having a McConnell spokesperson "hang up" on a WAVE 3 reporter. I could go on. His whole campaign has been a joke.

Benton once told WFPL's Phillip M. Bailey that McConnell had "set a goal of running the best statewide campaign in the history of United States American politics." The only thing funnier than the phrase "United States American politics" is just how far McConnell missed the mark on achieving that goal. 

Update 8/31/14 7:42 PM EST

Breaking...Secretary Alison Lundergan Grimes agrees her opponent needs to answer these questions:




Update 9/1/14 1:20 AM EST

Instead of asking the people who endorsed McConnell if they were incentivized to do so, the Herald-Leader's Sam Youngman has written a nothing-to-see-here piece concluding Benton's alleged involvement with a bribery scandal is more of a Rand Paul problem.

To reach this sensational conclusion, Youngman had to omit that it was McConnell's plan to model Ron Paul's presidential campaign (see above) and any mention of Dimitri Kesari, the other former McConnell consultant who has been alleged to have been the bribe money delivery boy. 

Further, Youngman failed to mention in his setup that McConnell was recorded also complaining about the student loan package's potential harm to the Koch's. 

August 30, 2014

Mitch McConnell spokesperson hangs up on WAVE 3

Moore, from Twitter.
When asked if she'd go on the record about Jesse Benton's resignation, Mitch McConnell's campaign spokesperson Allison Moore "hung up" on Louisville's WAVE 3.

WAVE 3 was one of of the first television stations in Louisville, Kentucky, first coming on air on November 24, 1948. At the time of their first broadcast, McConnell was already six years old.

Per Joe Sonka, Moore became the McConnell campaign spokesperson last August when audio was first-released of Benton complaining about having to hold his nose to work with McConnell.





August 28, 2014

Mitch McConnell sees reporters, pretends he is invisible

Remember when Sen. Mitch McConnell wasted taxpayer resources by asking the FBI to investigate me? If you didn't hear, this is how that turned out. And then there was that time McConnell dispatched a special cop to monitor Joe Sonka, then with LEO Weekly. And then there was a week ago, when the Hillbilly Report's Jim Pence was shut out of public event in Litchfield, Kentucky. McConnell's latest approach to evading the 4th estate accountability on his power?

He just pretends like his invisible. Yoohoo, we can see you!

August 25, 2014

Before Kentucky Farm Bureau, Mitch McConnell takes credit for brokering fiscal cliff deal with $500 million giveaway to Amgen, other pharmaceutical companies

Kentucky Farm Bureau recently hosted their Measure the Candidate Forum 2014, and today they published their video of opening statements of Senate candidates Mitch McConnell and Alison Lundergan Grimes. 



In McConnell's opening statement,  he gave us a reminder of how he spent his New Year's Eve 2012. 

"You may remember where you were New Year's Eve 2012, but I bet you forgot where I was. I was not with Elaine, I was with Joe Biden."
To hear him tell it, McConnell was Kentucky's fiscal savior that night. Not so fast, Senator.