Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Met With Romney

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., met with presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney in Washington on Wednesday, but sources are keeping the discussion quiet.

From National Journal:

A Senate Republican leadership aide confirmed the meeting, the first announced meeting this year between the two leading Republicans, but declined to comment further. Romney’s camp also declined to comment beyond confirming the meeting.

Romney met in March with Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., who is often at odds with McConnell, and House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis. Publicly, Romney has mostly steered clear of top Hill Republicans including McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, but GOP aides say GOP congressional leaders have coordinated with Romney’s campaign behind the scenes for months, and the public cooperation between the former Massachusetts governor and Hill Republicans has increased since Romney’s rivals for the GOP nomination exited the contest.

McConnell endorsed Romney in mid-April.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Yarmuth Applauds Conway for Joining Brief Against Citizens United Decision

U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., is commending Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway for backing the state of Montana in a case that revisits the U.S. Supreme Court’s controversial Citizens United ruling.

Two years ago, justices in a 5-to-4 majority rejected spending limits for corporations and labor unions within federal election law. However, the Montana Supreme Court made the opposite ruling earlier this year and upheld a century-old state law banning corporate campaign spending.

Attorneys are asking the justices to decide whether Citizens United case also applies to state and local elections.

“I applaud Attorney General Conway and his office for their efforts to limit the reach of the disastrous Citizens United decision and keep unlimited anonymous money from continuing to corrupt our political system,” Yarmuth said in a news release. “Special-interest groups that aren’t accountable to voters have already spent millions of dollars on federal elections this year, jamming the airwaves with attack ads. Without a change to the law, we can only expect more spending, more negativity, and less accountability.”

Local News Noise & Notes

McConnell Camp Sets Forceful Tone in First Web Ad

The campaign to re-elect Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has released a strong web ad praising the Republican lawmaker for standing up against President Obama for the past four years.

The 3 minute video is entitled “Refuse to be Defeated”, and documents McConnell’s opposition to the president’s agenda in a positive light. It begins with Mr. Obama’s acceptance speech and finds several clips praising McConnell for blocking key legislation in the Senate.

Check it out:

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Scolds Obama, Urges New Debt Limit Talks

Appearing on CBS’s Face The Nation on Sunday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., urged President Obama to “become the adult” and lead the conversation on the debt and deficit reduction plans.

Republican leaders used the Sunday morning shows to push for spending cuts as part of any deal to increase the national debt limit. It is expected the president will request a debt level increase and a fight is emerging over how to pay for the additional costs.

From Face The Nation:

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Shreds Obama “To-Do” List

In a Senate floor speech Thursday, Republican Leader Mitch McConnell lectured President Obama for pushing a “to-do” list on Congress.

Earlier this week, Mr. Obama delivered a speech unveiling a five-point package of previously announced proposals as unfinished business for lawmakers to accomplish. Among the president’s measures are mortgage relief for homeowners, clean energy manufacturing and eliminating incentives for businesses that ship jobs overseas.

But McConnell says the GOP caucus in the House and Senate has acted on legislation, including dozens of similar bills.

“So I have a suggestion—instead of focusing on his political Post-It note checklist, the president and Senate Democrats should show some leadership and work with Republicans to move on critical pro-growth bills. These proposals will help provide certainty and provide a much-needed boost to our economy,” he says.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Urges Supreme Court to Reaffirm Citizens United Case

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnel, R-Ky., is urging the U.S. Supreme Court to safeguard its controversial Citizens United case by overturning a state ruling that defied the high court’s decision.

Two years ago, a 5-to-4 majority of justices rejected spending limits for corporations and labor unions within federal election law. However, the Montana Supreme Court went in the opposite direction earlier this year and upheld a century-old state law banning corporate campaign spending.

Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer suggested the ruling should be reconsidered given the upheaval against the case, and the high court is contemplating just that.

In a legal brief, McConnell joined the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in asking the justices to overturn the Montana decision without holding a hearing. But supporters of the state ruling have also filed a brief urging for a regular review with the justices hearing their arguments.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Washington Post Calls Out Obama Over Ohio River Bridges

In a fact-check of President Obama’s recent speech, The Washington Post scolded the president for using old talking points and incorrectly identifying the Sherman Minton Bridge as closed while lashing out at Republican leaders.

On Monday, Mr. Obama once again criticized Speaker John Boehner, R-Oh., and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., about the Brent Spence Bridge connecting their states before a conference of union workers.

The president visited the span for the symbolism last year to rally for his jobs bill, but as the fact checker noted, the Obama administration has failed to explain how the legislation would pay for fixing the span considering it spends most money in 2013 and the Brent Spence is not slated for construction until 2015.

Later in the speech,  President Obama alluded to the Sherman Minton Bridge connecting Kentucky and Indiana as another example, saying it is still shut down. But as local commuters are well aware the span has been back open since February.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Bulldozing Potential Primary Challenge

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., has built up an impressive war chest for his re-election bid in 2014, but with millions raised it’s the GOP leader’s budding relationship with Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., that is his greatest asset.

According to Federal Election Commission, the GOP leader raised over $1 million in the first three months of 2011. Overall, McConell has garnered $7.9 million, with $5.1 in campaign cash on hand. Then there’s the political action committees and Super PACs raising money on McConnell’s behalf.

But what’s more telling is the lack of a Republican insurgent lining up to take on McConnell as other veteran GOP lawmakers have seen (see: Dick Lugar of Indiana and Orin Hatch of Utah).  A big reason for that is the growing friendship with Sen. Paul, who helps McConnell buffer Tea Party challengers.

From Roll Call:

David Adams, an influential Kentucky tea party organizer who was the campaign manager for Paul’s primary campaign, said “there’s no one even talking about” running against McConnell. “It’s a list right now that is zero,” he said, noting that in the tea party movement in Kentucky, “an excess of anger has led to a resurgence of apathy” as people are feeling that little can be done about the growing debt and deficit.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell: Who is Erick Erickson?

In a radio interview Wednesday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, dismissed attacks by conservative activist Erick Erickson by downplaying the CNN contributor’s significance.

Erickson held a conference call earlier this week to share his contempt for Kentucky’s senior Senator, where he blamed McConnell for failing to be conservative enough. He also attributed the loss of several Tea Party candidate across the country to the Senator’s backroom maneuvering.

But McConnell told talk radio host Laura Ingram those criticisms were “totally inaccurate” and that he has never even heard of Erickson—who is editor of Red and frequently appears on CNN. McConnell added that Erickson has no audience.

From Daily Caller:


Noise & Notes Politics

Conservative Activist Blames McConnell For…Everything

Led by conservative blogger Erick Erickson, a vocal band of activists are expressing their anger with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and blaming the GOP chief for just about everything.

The CNN contributor held a recent conference call where said Kentucky’s senior Senator hasn’t been conservative enough and shared his overall contempt.

From Roll Call:

“There are Democrats, Republicans and appropriators. Mitch McConnell is an appropriator before he’s a Republican,” said Erickson, who is also a CNN contributor. “He’s not willing to engage in the fight; he’s a consummate Washington guy.”