Kentucky… Why McConnell 2014 Could = Rand 2016

Many people are wondering… What happened in Kentucky?


By Steve Deace –  – May 20, 2014

As more disappointing primary results for those of us still bitterly clinging to our guns and our Bibles like me continue to pour in tonight, there is now a subplot developing in the Kentucky U.S. Senate race that has national implications for 2016.

Ditch McConnell did beat upstart challenger Matt Bevin tonight, and by a solid margin. However, the 60% of the vote McConnell received is the lowest any incumbent U.S. Senator has received in a Kentucky primary since 1938. McConnell already had some of the weakest general election numbers of any GOP incumbent this cycle, which looks even worse when you consider how pro-GOP the 2014 cycle is shaping up to be this fall. But throw in the fact a primary challenger he out-spent at least 3-to-1 got more than third of his base’s support, and you don’t have to be the second coming of Lee Atwater to realize McConnell is in trouble this fall.

Enter his fellow U.S. Senator from the Commonwealth — Rand Paul.

Several media reports indicated that McConnell marinated himself in the Rand brand down the stretch of the primary, and that barely a day went by that he didn’t find a way to link himself to his far more popular junior wing-man, who endorsed him early on. It’s quite likely McConnell still would’ve defeated Bevin even without Rand’s support, but the race would’ve been much closer. And an even closer primary would’ve weakened McConnell all the more.

Now an argument could be made that McConnell needs Rand just as much in the general this fall. If even some of Bevin’s 125,000 primary voters stays home in protest, McConnell could very well lose a state Mitt Romney won by more than 20 points in 2012. This is where Rand Paul comes in. Who knows how much of Bevin’s base is mad at Rand for backing McConnell in the first place? That is a question best asked of those on the ground in Kentucky. But over the course of the next five months it will be Rand’s job to find out, because he has a much better chance of turning out Bevin’s base than McConnell does.

However, an argument could also be made that Rand needs McConnell just as much as McConnell needs Rand.

Rand Paul has been running for the 2016 GOP nomination since about 10 seconds after Romney conceded. A lot of his political capital is now tied to Ditch. If McConnell were to lose in November, it could mortally wound Rand’s presidential aspirations because the narrative will not be that he attempted to mainstream his father’s movement, but that he “sold out.” On the other hand, if McConnell wins in November there will be little doubt that Rand “saved” McConnell to at least some extent, which then lets Team Rand make the case he’s now become a major political power-broker.

So Team Rand is married to Team Ditch now. Might as well consummate the relationship and put a ring on it. For the fate of McConnell’s U.S. Senate seat could also determine the fate of Rand Paul 2016. 

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About Ask Marion

I am a babyboomer and empty nester who savors every moment of my past and believes that it is the responsibility of each of us in my generation and Americans in general to make sure that America is as good or even a better place for future generations as it was for us. So far... we haven't done very well!! Favorite Quotes: "The first 50 years are to build and acquire; the second 50 are to leave your legacy"; "Do something that scares you every day!"; "The journey in between what you once were and who you are becoming is where the dance of life really takes place". At age 62 I find myself fighting inoperable uterine Cancer and thanks to the man upstairs and the prayers from so many people including many of my readers from AskMarion and JustOneMorePet... I'm beating it. After losing our business because of the economy and factors related to the re-election of President Obama in 2012 followed by 16-mos of job hunting, my architect-trained husband is working as a trucker and has only been home approximately 5-days a month since I was diagnosed, which has made everything more difficult and often lonely... plus funds are tight. Our family medical deductible is 12K per year for two of us; thank you ObamaCare. But thanks to donations from so many of you, we are making ends meet as I go through treatment while taking care of my father-in-law who is suffering from late stage Alzheimer's and my mother-in-law who suffers from RA and onset dementia as well as hearing loss, for which there are no caretaker funds, as I continue the fight here online to inform and help restore our amazing country. And finally I need to thank a core group of family, friends, and readers... all at a distance, who check in with me regularly. Plus, I must thank my furkids who have not left my side through this fight. You can see them at JustOneMorePet.
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1 Response to Kentucky… Why McConnell 2014 Could = Rand 2016

  1. Pingback: The Wrap at Ask Marion 5.18.14 Thru 5.25.14 – Memorial Day Weekend Edition | askmarion

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