May 5th, 2009
02:51 PM ET
13 years ago

Bunning blames McConnell for GOP losses in Senate

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Bunning blamed McConnell for the GOP's loss of Senate seats."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) – Sen. Jim Bunning is again attacking his fellow Kentucky Republican, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling him "selfish" and blaming for his party's loss of seats in the Senate.

"So if leadership means anything, it means you don't lose approximately 19 seats in three election cycles with good leadership," Bunning said on a conference call with local reporters on Tuesday, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal.

Bunning has lashed out at McConnell and other Senate Republicans before. Earlier this year, he blamed McConnell for his poor fundraising performance and threatened to sue the National Republican Senatorial Committee if it backed an alternative GOP candidate.

Bunning, who is considered one of the most vulnerable Republicans going into the 2010 election cycle, has raised $262,980 so far, according to his most recent FEC filing. He may face a serious primary challenge, and a number of Democrats have already thrown their hats in the ring, including his state's Attorney General Jack Conway and Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo.

On Tuesday, Bunning also criticized Sen. Arlen Specter's decision last week to defect to the Democratic Party, calling his former colleague "as selfish as our leader."

"Do you know Arlen Specter will be 80, has had four bouts with cancer and he still wants to run for the U.S. Senate?" Bunning told reporters on the call. "And I'm being criticized at 77 and healthy for wanting to run for the U.S. Senate by certain leadership people in my party. Give me a break."

Filed under: Jim Bunning
May 4th, 2009
04:30 PM ET
9 years ago

'I'm very serious about running,' Ron Paul's son says

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Dr. Rand Paul, the son of Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul, told CNN Monday that he is seriously considering a run for the Senate."]
(CNN) – The son of former Republican presidential hopeful Rep. Ron Paul said Monday that he is primed to mount a bid for the Kentucky Senate seat currently occupied by GOP Sen. Jim Bunning.

"I am very serious about running for Sen. Bunning's seat if he decides not to run," 46-year-old Rand Paul told CNN.
"Until he makes a final pronouncement, I'm trying not to do anything formally but I'm very close to making a decision."

The younger Paul's views closely resemble those of his conservative father.

"I think the bank bailout was a huge mistake," Rand Paul said Monday. "We should not have the U.S. government buying stock in American industries – the financial industry or any other industry. Most of that money could have probably been burned in a furnace for all the good it's done." The Bowling Green, Kentucky ophthalmologist pointed to the federal government's support of embattled global insurance giant AIG, calling the company's "worthless" despite the billions in aid given to it since last fall.

Like his father, the son also favors notions of limited government. "Libertarian would be a good description," Rand Paul told CNN, "because libertarians believe in freedom in all aspects of your life – your economic life as well as your social life as well as your personal life."

Filed under: Jim Bunning • Ron Paul
March 24th, 2009
04:30 PM ET
14 years ago

Bunning blasts McConnell over fundraising

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Bunning is having problems raising money for his reelection effort."](CNN) - Kentucky Sen. Jim Bunning again took aim at his party Tuesday, blaming fellow Senate Republicans, in part, for his poor fundraising performance so far this year.

According to the Louisville Courier-Journal, Bunning lashed out at Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell - Kentucky's other senator - for launching fundraising efforts for his own campaign even though he will not face re-election for another five years.

"My senior senator [McConnell] also sent out his first mailing for 2014. Just as I refrained from doing it for two years, he sent out his, so you know where he stands," Bunning said in a conference call with local reporters, according to the paper.

Earlier this year, Bunning threatened to sue the National Republican Senatorial Committee if it backed an alternative GOP candidate. On Tuesday, he said NRSC chairman John Cornyn and the nation's poor economy were to blame for his underwhelming fundraising haul so far.

Bunning - who has roughly $150,000 in his campaign account, according to his most recent FEC filing - is considered one of the Senate's most vulnerable Republicans heading into the next cycle.

The outspoken senator also drew headlines last month with his prediction that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who suffers from cancer, would be dead within the year. He later apologized for that comment.

Filed under: Jim Bunning
February 24th, 2009
02:45 PM ET
14 years ago

Bunning threatens suit against NRSC

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Bunning will seek reelection in 2010."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - Kentucky Sen. Jim Bunning said Tuesday he's ready to sue Senate Republicans if they back a challenger in next year's GOP primary.

“I would have a suit against the NRSC if they did that,” Bunning told Kentucky reporters on a conference call. “Support of incumbents is the only reason for [the NRSC's] existence. So if they recruited someone and supported them in a primary against me, I would be able to sue them because they’re not following their bylaws.”

His threat follows a report that Kentucky's State Senate president, David Williams, recently met with officials at the National Republican Senatorial Committee. NRSC Chairman John Cornyn told the Washington Post the meeting was a "courtesy visit" and that the committee fully supports Bunning. Williams has not yet said whether he is planning a Senate bid in 2010.


Filed under: Jim Bunning • John Cornyn • NRSC
January 27th, 2009
05:10 PM ET
9 years ago

Bunning defiantly promises to seek re-election in 2010

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Bunning will seek reelection in 2010."](CNN) - Republican Senator Jim Bunning declared emphatically Tuesday that he is running for re-election in 2010, despite his cash-poor war chest and reports that some Republicans want him to step aside.

On a conference call with local reporters in Kentucky, Bunning also expressed frustration with fellow Kentuckian, Sen. Mitch McConnell, who said last week he wasn’t sure what Bunning’s intentions are for the upcoming cycle.

“He either had a lapse of memory or something when speaking to the Press Club last week when he said that he didn't know what my intentions were,” Bunning said of the Senate Minority Leader, according to the Louisville Courier-Journal. “He knew very well what my intentions were.”

Bunning suggested McConnell wasn’t being truthful.

“I had an hour-long meeting with Sen. McConnell in the first week of December in 2008, and we thoroughly discussed my candidacy for the Senate in that hour meeting in my office in Northern Kentucky, and gave him every indication that I was going to run again,” Bunning said on the call.

Bunning, the 77-year old former baseball player, already has at least one challenger for the seat: Kentucky Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo, who nearly unseated Bunning in 2004. Other state Democrats are mulling whether to jump in the race.

Filed under: Jim Bunning • Kentucky • Mitch McConnell
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