October 18th, 2010
09:49 AM ET
8 years ago

McCaskill says Dem's ad ‘very dangerous’

(CNN) - A fellow Democrat warned Kentucky Senate candidate Jack Conway that his latest ad targeting Republican Rand Paul's reported behavior in college is "very dangerous."

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Missouri, said the Conway ad that repeats an unsubstantiated GQ story about Paul when he was a student at Baylor University comes "close to the line" in what should be deemed inappropriate in political campaigns.

"Candidates who are behind at the end reach, and sometimes they overreach," McCaskill said on MSNBC. "This ad is very dangerous because it reaches back to college. The ad came close to the line."

The spot hit Kentucky airwaves over the weekend and references the story that - relying on anonymous sources - reported Paul blindfolded and tied up a female student, forcing her to take bong hits. The story also reported Paul told the woman his god was "Aqua Buddha" and that she should bow down and worship him.

Responding to the report in August, Paul said he did not remember the event and added, "I really don't think that politicians should be asked to answer anonymous accusers from 27 years ago, but I will categorically deny that I ever kidnapped anyone or forced anybody to use drugs."

But the new spot from Conway says Paul still hasn't adequately addressed the matter:

"Why was Rand Paul a member of a secret society that called the Holy Bible 'a hoax' - that was banned form mocking Christianity and Christ?" asks the narrator in the ad called “Why?” "Why did Rand Paul once tie a woman up? Tell her to bow down before a false idol and say his god was 'Aqua Buddha?"

Paul expressed outrage over the commercial at a Kentucky Senate debate Sunday night, asking Conway, "Have you no decency? Have you no shame?"

"You know how we know when you're lying? Your lips are moving," an angy Paul also said. "You're accusing me of crimes. Do you know nothing about the process? You're going to stand there and accuse me of a crime from 30 years ago from some anonymous source? How ridiculous are you? You embarrass this race."

Paul refused to shake Conway's hand at the end of the debate.

Conway, the state's attorney general, defended the ad during Sunday's debate, saying Paul had still not answered the "fundamental questions" the commercial raises.

But despite McCaskill's unease with the commercial, she said the Tea Party-backed Paul is "out there."

He's an extreme candidate," she said.

Polls show Paul holds a single-digit lead over Conway.

Filed under: 2010 • Claire McCaskill • Jack Conway • Rand Paul
soundoff (58 Responses)
  1. Mark S.

    The ad is no less true, and no less sleazy, than Sarah Palin saying that Obama pals around with terrorists.... I am happy to see someone give a republican a taste of their own medicine.....

    October 18, 2010 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  2. John

    Wait, when did reaching back to college become off limits? Seems like they're doing that to Obama *all the time*...

    October 18, 2010 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  3. diridi

    what do you expect....another GOP thug.....o.k.....just do not listen....they go blank just like fox news channel....without any money....they learn in a hard way....idiots....vote for just Dems....only Dems...

    October 18, 2010 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  4. John

    I'm sorry to say that I agree with McCaskill about this. Paul may well be an extremist, and may well be a kook. But the frat-boy stunt the ad is about really doesn't matter.

    October 18, 2010 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  5. Fed Up

    There is nothing "close to the line" in a political campaign. Look at the trash that's on the airwaves. It's completely disgusitng. No one should be elected that prodeces negative ads. And....the Democratic and Republican parties should not be allowed to produce them either. The ads are so out-there that my 14 year old granddaugter about went through the roof when she saw an ad produced by the DSCC here in Colorado. If she can see the lies, then everyone else should open their eyes also.

    October 18, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  6. katiec

    What he did in college is the least of worries about Paul. His wanting to eliminate vital agencies, having stances pushed by the the tea partiers, his clearly misunderstanding of what it takes and how our country is run are far more frightening.
    Some of these representing the republican party are absolutely ridiculous as candidates for being a party of leadership
    for our country.
    And now, with corporations, special interests trying to buy our elections it is vital for the American voters to let them know we will not allow their takeover.

    October 18, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  7. runswithbeer

    Ya'll should see the crap flying around in Texas by Republicans.

    October 18, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  8. Julie C in CA

    I don't condone this ad from the sounds of it, but I also don't think Rand is a viable candidate on a bunch of points. He's another fringe loony who's on the ballot solely because these voters are angry. We know that decisions based on anger lead us to very bad choices. That seems to be the agenda for the T.P'ers. Get them pissed and they'll vote for our bat-sh!t crazy candidates. I guess is works for those less informed. I'd still vote for McCaskill despite the ad; there's not other rational choice.

    October 18, 2010 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  9. Kenneth

    And these are the options put before the people? Over aged juvenile delinquents ... ARE THERE NO OTHER POTENTIAL CANDIDATES THAT WILL STEP UP? It seems that WE are just sitting back ALLOWING these MORONS to ruin our country! Not just Rand Paul and Jack Conway, but several others in this election who continually drag the political positions further into the abyss. It is truly sad to see the quality of "leaders" being elected into office. And we wonder why the economy is in such a state when ALL of the "elected" politician's currently in office, or those vying for a seat, can't speak eloquently on the issues that our country needs to have addressed. Instead they point towards the short comings of others to attempt to make themselves "look" better. No wonder so many people choose not to vote ... look at the options we are presented with. TERM LIMITS and REAL VETTING needs to be implemented, otherwise we get EXACTLY what we deserve for allowing the "ruling class" to "choose" our options.

    October 18, 2010 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  10. Orlando Patriot

    This is what is so scary about Democrats. They will lie, cheat, steal, and do whatever necessary to try and win regardless of whether it is morally or ethically acceptable. Is that the kind of representative you want in Congress? One that would lie and state a crime was committed 30 years ago without any substantiation or evidence? Democrats have no ethics or morals. Good riddance and you will see that once Republicans take over power in the House (and maybe the Senate:)!!) then this country can get back to standing up for the truth.

    October 18, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  11. The Unsub

    what's fair is fair. this is a job interview. the public shoud know who they are electing. look what they did to the Obamas in the primary. they trashed Michelle's thesis! pure hypocrisy now that its being done to you!

    October 18, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  12. jimm23

    No doubt. You don't want the same to happen to liberal candidates. Oh man. You don't want to know what seasoned liberal politicians were doing in the passion of their youth. This is a true pandora's box.

    October 18, 2010 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  13. stufit

    The ad really won't make any difference in the outcome and in the history of the downfall of Obama, it will serve to show what Democrat liberals were like when they existed and why they failed in this election and eventually went the way of all radical parties.

    October 18, 2010 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  14. ChumBucket

    Now, If the dems were to be honest with themselves for a moment, if the tables were turned, they would be crying bloody murder over this add.

    instead, they're on these forums supporting it... figures.

    October 18, 2010 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  15. AnaHadWolves

    You'll notice one glaring thing in all this: Rand Paul did not ever specifically say that the events were totally inaccurate. Mekes ya wonder, Rand.

    October 18, 2010 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  16. Terry from West Texas

    I agree that a candidate's foolish moments as a teenager or a young man say nothing about the mature man.

    Paul is a dangerous lunatic as an adult. The whacko economics of Libertarianism would destroy this nation. Vote against Rand because he is crazy NOW, not because he was a stupid kid way back when.

    October 18, 2010 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  17. Midwestmatt

    Welcome to the tactics of Rove and Gingrich.

    And they use them against their own party! Turnabout is a drag, huh boys?

    October 18, 2010 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  18. carlos

    what about the republiCONServatives running despicable ads? huh???

    October 18, 2010 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  19. TangledThorns

    Conway is desperate just like the many Democrat candidates out there. Hopey Changey nor mean politics won't save the Democrats.

    October 18, 2010 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. Peace

    I beg to disagree with Claire McCaskill. I hope she understands that vetting is very important to anyone who is seeking to hold any Public Office. And that vetting does not have any borders. It can go as far as the person who is doing it can reach, and inform people by Ads or any other means. I wish this could have been done to other candidates especially from the unregistered party; Tea Party candidates, who are little known or not known at all!

    October 18, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  21. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I guess the question is - how far back can you go into someone's past and it still be relevant? I guess the question is how much time should be really spent on this secret society and is Rand Paul still active in it? If you think that it goes to his character (because of the actions taken during association with the group) and what was done then or recently because of it, then it still might be relevant. It would be very much so if he still believes the groups tenents. All I figure Rand Paul believes in is that only the Constitution calls for is national defense and to hell with everything else.

    October 18, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  22. Ed L

    Curly Top Paul is clearly NUTS.... voters have a right to know....

    October 18, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  23. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    Very dangerous ad. Especially if he offends Aqua Buddha.

    October 18, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  24. Cocitizen

    Democrats attacking Democrats!! This is just one more reason why my party is about to become the minority party. What is wrong with these people?

    October 18, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  25. Red by Choice

    This ad is not dangerous. It is just plain stupid. Welcome to the Democratic Party.

    Is that all you got? Really?

    October 18, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
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