May 4th, 2010
12:38 PM ET
5 years ago

Grayson highlights McConnell endorsement in new ad

 Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell officially endorsed Trey Grayson on Tuesday.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell officially endorsed Trey Grayson on Tuesday.

(CNN) – Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson is touting a high profile endorsement in his bid for his state's Republican Senate nomination in a new campaign commercial. Grayson was officially endorsed Tuesday by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, who is also the state's senior senator. Grayson and Rand Paul are the top GOP contenders in the battle for the GOP nomination. Kentucky holds its primary in two weeks.

"Trey Grayson has a proven conservative record as Secretary of State, cutting his office budget by 15% and ensuring that Kentucky's taxpaying families have easy access to information about his office and budget," says McConnell in a statement released by the Grayson campaign.

"I rarely endorse in primaries but these are critical times. President Obama's spending threatens to destroy more jobs. I know Trey Grayson and trust him. We need Trey's conservative leadership to help turn back the Obama agenda," says McConnell, in the new ad.

The Grayson campaign tells CNN that the commerical will run on broadcast and cable across Kentucky, and that the ad buy is the largest of their campaign to date.

Reacting to the McConnell endorsement and commercial, Paul campaign manager David Adams tells CNN that Paul "is right on the issues Kentucky voters care about, and he has earned the credibility he needs to win this race on May 18."

Grayson and Paul, a physician and the son of Texas Rep. Ron Paul, are running to succeed Sen. Jim Bunning, the Republican lawmaker who announced last summer that he would not run for a third term. Some national GOP leaders rallied around Grayson at the time.

The McConnell endorsement is the latest in a series of high-profile officials who have gotten involved in the primary. Paul, a favorite with conservatives and with many in the Tea Party movement, picked up a major endorsement from former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. Most recent polls indicate that Paul leads Grayson in the GOP primary matchup. Three other lesser-known Republican candidates are also in the race.

Last month, Bunning endorsed Paul and former New York City mayor and 2008 GOP presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani endorsed Grayson. The Grayson campaign announced Monday that Rep. Hal Rogers, who has represented southeast Kentucky for 30 years, backed Grayson. The district could be instrumental in the outcome of the May 18 primary.

Also Monday, James Dobson, the founder and former head of the influential socially conservative organization Focus on the Family, endorsed Rand Paul after originally backing Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson last week.

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway and Lt. Gov. Don Mongiardo are the top two candidates battling for the Democratic Senate nomination.

Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn


Filed under: 2010 • Kentucky • Mitch McConnell • Rand Paul • Trey Grayson
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. BillE

    Just what we need, another classy republican to say no and yell out at state of the union speeches.

    May 4, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  2. Mike

    A true conservative is what we need, regardless of the party. But seeing as how there are no true conservative in the demorat ranks, that only leaves independents and Republicans.

    May 4, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  3. Larry

    McConnell, one of the most corrupt politicians in Washington, endorses Grayson.

    I will love the day when the people of this country go to the polls and that (R) is absent from the ballot.

    Republicans, you're finished in this country. You're about to be a party of the past.

    May 4, 2010 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  4. Jim

    Any endorsement from Mitch 'Scrotum Throat' McConnell is the kiss of death. It's only obvious that when a possible candidate gets endorsed by a Washington elite it should send a clear signal to the voters that Washington already has this possible newbie in their back pockets.

    You might as well hang a flashing neon sign on the newbie that states 'I'm with stupid and my vote is whatever his is'

    The pickings are getting slimmer in politics!

    May 4, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  5. insightful

    McConnell's looking for another mean-spirited conservative that will walk in his steps – right to the banking and oil industry money men. Greyson has been his pick since McConnell was instrumental in pushing Bunning out the door in 2010.

    Looks like the Republicans are planning more of the same tired old behavior: i.e., less conceern for the American people and their plight, and more concern for big business and their enrichment! ! !

    May 4, 2010 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  6. normajean

    Senator McConnell is an old fool and it's time for him to retire. He speaks of President Obamas agenda and spending as destroying jobs. What jobs are left after the disaster of the last administration. The president is trying and suceeding in his attempts to put this countrys people back to work, keep them in their homes and making sure they have health care.. The Repubs and Sen. McConnell have done nothing to help in restoring some sanity to our lives. They have fought all the way to not only put down the president but to deny our people what they need to live normal lives. This man and his cohorts are guilty of doing nothing even for their own constituants. NOTHING.

    May 4, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  7. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    McConnell is misleading Republicans in the worst way because he is part of the stone age just like his buddy McCain. Technology is blowing them away and they can't keep up so they just obstruct.

    May 4, 2010 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  8. Captain Crunch

    "I rarely endorse in primaries but these are critical times. President Obama's spending threatens to destroy more jobs. I know Trey Grayson and trust him. We need Trey's conservative leadership to help turn back the Obama agenda," says McConnell, in the new ad.

    Looks like McConnell's hand-picked puppet is going to go down in flames! Glad to see it, perhaps the leader of the "Party of No" can appreciate this "NO"!

    May 4, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  9. Sgt. USMC

    Endorsed by a liar, that should be a clue that Grayson is worthless. Kentucky, be wise!

    May 4, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  10. Bill

    Paul is leading by 15+ points in all the polls. Way to lead the way to failure and disappointment yet again, Mitch. Got any other 100-1 shots you want us to bet on?

    Paul is solidly against taxes and against Federal spending. Both of those are extremely popular at the moment. Wake up and smell the coffee, pal.

    May 4, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  11. Kevin B.

    This guy looks like Tudor the turtle

    May 4, 2010 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  12. Michael

    Mitch McConnell,

    never heard anything smart out of your mouth.
    When did you ever complain about W's spending?
    Never
    Your mind can only deal with 2 letters NO

    May 4, 2010 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  13. Unbelievable!!

    We need Trey's conservative leadership to help turn back the Obama agenda," says McConnell, in the new ad.

    There you go.."to turn back the Obama agenda" no matter what it is. Just goes to show what frame of mind the republicans have. JUST SAY NO.

    May 4, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  14. Annie, Atlanta

    An endorsement from the man with a plan to destroy this country so his party could regain control. It could work, sadly. Depends on how much the good people of Kentucky are paying attention to what's going on in DC. Us news junkies and pay attention, most people don't.

    May 4, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  15. David

    ...help turn back the Obama agenda.

    That about sums up the GOP efforts over the last year+. It's Party First. What legislation have they brought to the table which actually helps average Americans?

    Vote NO for the party of NO.

    May 4, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  16. Denna

    So why wasn't Trey worried about President Bush's spending? If I remember correctly, jobs started disappearing under George Bush, but the entire Republican party was buried so far up his tookis they didn't notice. Mitch McConnell didn't start to "care" about America until President Obama was elected. Seriously people, this mess started under Bush and President Obama has done nothing but try to fix this country. Also, seriously, when have you seen a President actually keep his campaign promises. He promised health care reform and he gave it to us. Mitch, Trey, have you ever bothered to keep your campaign promises, or are your constituents stupid?

    May 4, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |