Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Yarmuth: Obama Has Right to Politicize bin Laden Death

For most of the week Republicans have been critical of an attack ad by President Obama’s re-election campaign highlighting the death of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden. But Democratic Congress John Yarmuth believes its proper for the president to politicize the issue.

The ad released earlier this month features former President Bill Clinton, who says Mr. Obama made a tough but important decision. The ad also suggests—without naming him—that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney would had failed to go after the al-Qaeda leader.

Watch it below:

Yarmuth says that the president should rightfully take credit for bin Laden’s downfall and has been restrained in using the killing for the re-election campaign.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Daniels Reprimands Romney for Negative Campaigning

In an interview with the Indianapolis Star, Governor Mitch Daniels admonished Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for running a negative campaign during the GOP primary and advised the presumptive nominee against using the tactic in the general election.

Earlier this week, Daniels endorsed Romney for president in the race against President Barack Obama. Republican opponents complained that much of Romney’s message was more about crushing his GOP rivals than promoting his own agenda.

Daniels warned against using a “slash-and-burn” strategy.

From Indianapolis Star:

“You have to campaign to govern, not just to win,” he said. “. . . Spend the precious time and dollars explaining what’s at stake and a constructive program to make life better. And as I say, look at everything through the lens of folks who have yet to achieve.”

After a pause, Daniels added with disappointment: “Romney doesn’t talk that way.”

Noise & Notes Politics

Yarmuth Rips Romney Before Louisville Visit

Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth has harsh words for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who is scheduled to visit Louisville on Thursday for a fundraiser.

On a conference call organized by the Democratic National Committee, Yarmuth highlighted a Romney campaign event at a shut down factory in Ohio. The presumptive GOP nominee tried to tie the plant’s closure under former President George W. Bush to President Barack Obama’s failure to re-open it.

Yarmuth says Romney should visit two Louisville plants to see that the Obama administration’s policies have resurrected manufacturing in the region.

“That was a factory that closed in 2008 during the housing crisis, and the policies and economic philosophy Mitt Romney would bring us back to,” he says. “I know he was trying to make the case that if the policies under the president were different, then that factory would be open. So I hope while he’s in Louisville he’ll go out and visit Appliance Park and Ford and see exactly what the policies of the Obama administration have done to revitalize manufacturing and add thousands of jobs in our community.”

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Endorses Romney for President

Joining other top Republican officials, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., endorsed former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney for president on Tuesday, saying the GOP is united behind the presumptive nominee.

Earlier this month, McConnell avoided giving Romney the nod because the Kentucky primary was approaching. But with former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum dropping out of the race—and basement candidates Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul barely campaigning—the pathway for Romney to gain the nomination against President Obama is much clearer.

McConnell says polling shows the race will be very competitive and he is looking forward to the fall campaign.

“I support Governor Romney for President of the United States and he is going to be the nominee,” he told reporters. “If you’ve noticed, the party is in the process of unifying behind him. And I think it’s going to be an incredibly close, hard fought race.”

The first Gallup poll of the general election shows Romney ahead of President Obama by two percentage points, which is within the margin of error.


Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Romney Coming to Louisville for Fundraiser

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will be in Louisville on Thursday at a fundraiser hosted at the home of Papa John’s founder John Schnatter, several GOP volunteers and officials have confirmed.

Invitations asking for various donation levels were sent out earlier this week. This will be the former Massachusetts governor’s second visit to the commonwealth and first to the city.

Romney visited Kentucky in November for a fundraiser in Lexington.

“We are honored to again host Gov. Romney in Kentucky to raise funds to defeat President Obama in November. The event is picking up RSVP’s by the minute and Gov. Romney’s team in Kentucky is doing its part to build a winning campaign for a great candidate,” says Kelly Knight, who heads Romney’s Kentucky Finance committee. “Our nation can’t afford another four years of the failed Obama agenda, and Mitt Romney is offering a fresh direction to turn around our economy and restore opportunities for every American.”

In Kentucky, Romney, who is the presumptive GOP nominee for president, has raised over $412,000 thus far compared to $567,000 in contributions garnered by President Obama.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

McConnell Bypasses Endorsing Romney But Implores GOP to Unite

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., isn’t endorsing Mitt Romney for president, but says the former Massachusetts governor is on his way to winning the nomination and that it’s time for the GOP to focus on the fall campaign.

Appearing on CNN’s “State of the Union” the Republican leader said Romney would be “an excellent candidate” but that voters don’t need him to weigh-in on the race because the Kentucky primary isn’t until May.

McConnell pivoted and implored the GOP to unite behind one candidate to unseat President Obama in November, indicating the other candidates should drop out.

“It’s absolutely apparent that it’s in the best interests of our party at this particular point to get behind the person who is obviously going to be our nominee and to begin to make the case against the president of the United States,” he said.

From CNN:

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Rand Paul VP Rumors Continue But Face Growing Skepticism

Despite the ongoing Republican presidential primary, rumors about who GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney might select to be his running mate continue to mention U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., as a potential vice presidential candidate.

Paul’s father, Congressman Ron Paul, R-Tx., who is also running for president, downplayed the rumors that his son is on Romney’s short list. But as WFPL reported last month, Sen. Paul is open the door on the idea and would be honored at the consideration.

And while many believe such a selection—if Romney wins the nomination—would boost the former Massachusetts governor’s support among Tea Party members, some political observers are skeptical that Kentucky’s controversial junior Senator would benefit him at all.

From The Nation:

The recent political chatter has centered on Rand Paul. On the surface it seems plausible. First, it would at least explain why Ron Paul has been so uncharacteristically tame toward Romney. Second, Rand Paul is a conservative Southerner, an identity that Romney does not connect well with.

However, Rand Paul’s brand of conservatism is far too extreme for the general voter. In Paul’s Senate campaign he argued that private businesses should still have the right to discriminate. It’s one thing to advocate for states’ rights in general terms, and another to try to argue against the long-settled constitutional and societal norm that discrimination is unacceptable. While this position did not harm his election, it may not play as well outside of his home state of Kentucky and the Deep South.


Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Campaigning for Dad, Rand Paul Slams Romney, Santorum

Joining his father, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., on the Republican presidential campaign trail, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., ripped Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney as too liberal to defeat President Barack Obama in a general election.

The father and son duo are on the trail in Iowa, where Congressman Paul has surged and is considered a “rock star” for his libertarian views. According to the final poll released by the Des Moines Register, Congressman Paul is statistically tied with Romney and could pull of an upset.

Campaigning in Iowa, Sen. Paul pulled no punches about his father’s opponents.

From Politico (h/t PageOneKentucky):

On CBS’s “The Early Show,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said of Santorum, “On economic issues, like foreign aid — he’s voted for foreign aid repeatedly, he’s voted to double the size of the Department of Education. Old-school Reagan Republicans don’t believe in the Department of Education — Rick Santorum voted to double the size of the Department of Education.”

Moving on to Mitt Romney, the Kentucky senator said the former Massachusetts governor, too, would not be strong enough to beat the president.

“He supported the linchpin of ‘Obamacare’ — the individual mandate — and he supported the bank bailout,” he said. “All of these things wrapped together don’t make Romney a good opponent for Obama, either.”

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Romney Appearing in Kentucky for Fundraiser

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is scheduled to vist in Kentucky on November 17 to attend a fundraiser hosted by an influential businessman who is known as the “face of coal” in the commonwealth.

The big-ticket event will be the former governor of Massachusetts’ first stop in the commonwealth during his 2012 bid for the GOP nomination to challenge President Obama.

From Pure Politics:

Romney … will appear at an evening reception at the Kentucky Aviation Museum in Lexington hosted by coal company owner Joe Craft and Republican fundraiser Kelly Knight, according to a save-the-date card for the event.

Individuals who raise at least $10,000 for Romney’s campaign qualify for a “host committee reception” with the candidate. Those who give the federal maximum of $2,500 — or $5,000 for a couple — get their picture taken with Romney at a “VIP photo reception.” And those who give $1,000 — or $2,000 per couple — can attend the general reception.

The former governor of Massachusetts has already made waves in the commonwealth for receiving the endorsement of Republican Congressmen Hal Rogers and Ed Whitefield.

Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Paul Duo Hit Iowa

Taking a road trip to Iowa, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., joined his father, U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tx., on the presidential campaign trail Wednesday to enliven supporters leading up to the August 13 straw poll.

Congressman Paul is making his third attempt at the presidency, but this is the first time his Sen. Paul has joined his father on the 2012 election bid. The father and son congressional duo spoke to a crowd of about 50 people during a meet and greet in the city of Waterloo, where Kentucky’s junior Senator told the audience that both parties need to compromise to bring government spending down.

“Democrats have to admit that entitlements and welfare need to be reformed,” Sen. Paul said.  “Social spending needs to go down and Republicans need to admit that military spending needs to go down. They say the tea party won’t compromise—we will compromise.”

Oh, and the rest of the Paul family is coming too. Almost three dozen of them.