Matt Bevin ran the most positive, well articulated and strong vision to reclaim Kentucky in recent political history.
“Plain and simple, Bevin ran the best campaign.
It wasn’t just the “Food fight” ad. Bevin and campaign manager Ben Hartman, whose last campaign also lost to an establishment U.S. Senate candidate in a 2014 primary, made all the right moves at all the right times.
As the candidates spent their weekends this spring at Lincoln Day dinners across the state, Bevin began turning heads.
McConnell loyalists, slightly alarmed, reported that they were hearing from supporters in every corner of the state that at every dinner, Bevin was blowing away the field with his remarks.
Bevin didn’t make his millions by accident. He is a great salesman, and he sold himself with aplomb at those dinners.
He had, after all, become a student of the dinners, regularly attending them in 2014 long after he had been vanquished by McConnell.
Aided by his personal fortune, Bevin hit the ground running in late January, and he tirelessly campaigned across the state, giving voters his “Blueprint for Kentucky” and asking them, just as he did in 2014, just to “kick the tires” on what he was proposing.
Matt Bevin’s message has been a clear bold contrast to the Democrats and the only Republican candidate who has spelled out a written consistent conservative message with his Blueprint For A Better Kentucky.
Mitch McConnell and his minions know this. The last thing they want is to see Matt Bevin succeed in being the next Governor of Kentucky. It would mean that Matt Bevin is not in Mitch’s back pocket. You’ve already seen early on Mitch and his minions running interference and trolling social media for Conway to help defeat Matt Bevin.
“According to the Herald Leader, Bevin also said that if anyone doubted that he worked hard to support McConnell in that campaign, Larry Cox — and old friend and advisor of McConnell — would vouch for him.
In a phone conversation with Insider Louisville, Cox did nothing of the sort, saying that Bevin was completely making that up.
‘No, I cannot do any of that,’ said Cox, struggling to contain shocked laughter. ‘I don’t know why he would even invoke my name. That is inviting the discrediting of what he had to say. I am lost, I really am lost. No, there was never any evidence of support for Mitch McConnell of which I’m aware at all.”
Cox said he wants to see the Republican Party unite for the fall elections, but Bevin’s falsehoods right off of the bat aren’t doing the party any favors.
“It’s in my interest as a longtime Republican activist to see a party that pulls together, but my gracious, I also would like to protect my integrity just a little, too,” said Cox. “Surely you know it really is up to the nominee to pull the party together. And when you pick out somebody like me… and quote them with what is nothing but a lie, that is probably not doing a whole lot to help party cohesion. So I don’t know where it goes from here. This is not an element of unity building.”
How do we know that Larry Cox isn’t lying about Bevin’s conversation with him? A better question who really cares about 2014? Mitch and his minions do. It’s not about party unity for them, instead it’s about continuing to throw distractions Matt Bevin’s way in order to boost the Democrat nominee, Jack Conway. Mitch McConnell sees a path where Matt Bevin is continually distracted with trying to reach out to him in the same way that Cuccinelli in Virginia was obsessed with trying to suck up to Bill Bolling.
“KEN SPENT MORE TIME WORRYING ABOUT BILL BOLLING THAN HIS OWN SUPPORTERS.
Cuccinelli should have instigated Bill Bolling to run as an Independent. While conventional wisdom was that Bolling would have taken more votes from Cuccinelli than McAuliffe, it’s pretty clear looking at the results that Bolling would have cut significantly into the McAuliffe vote, and won many high-income “moderates” who ultimately voted for McAuliffe anyway.”
You will hear over the next couple of months that Matt Bevin desperately needs Mitch McConnell and his influence to win Kentucky. Mitch’s minions will drive this home. The Kentucky media will drive this home. You will continue to see false stories of how Mitch is the one who wants to unite and Matt Bevin is still bitter about 2014 and all the while it will be Mitch McConnell and his pack of wolves working in the shadows to undermine Matt Bevin’s campaign. The good news is that it won’t work. Mitch McConnell is too distracted to kill off Matt Bevin’s chances. Mitch McConnell is too unpopular to have the political capitol to pull it off.
“Republicans can fool some of the people some of the time, but they can’t fool all the people all the time. They can only go so far in reneging on every campaign promise before the public begins to realize the extent of the betrayal. Now, a new comprehensive poll from the Pew Research Center confirms that this time has come.
Pew asked respondents if GOP leaders, in charge of the newly-minted Republican Congress, have kept their promises. Only 23% of those polled answered affirmatively that indeed Republicans have kept their promises. More importantly, only 37% of Republicans believe that their own party has kept their campaign promises. And only 41% of Republicans approve of their party leadership—that is lower than the percentage of people from all political affiliations who approve of Obama.”
There’s also something happening in Kentucky. Kentucky is sick of the smears evidenced by Hal Heiner’s significant loss in the primary. Mitch McConnell is not going to get away with these kind of tactics if he chooses to continue with this line of attack even in the shadows voters will see through it. They have had enough. McConnell’s tactics will backfire like they did with Hal Heiner. If you are afraid that Bevin will be distracted because Mitch McConnell is running interference for Conway think again. Bevin has mastered maneuvering through the mindfield.
“Being ignored or underestimated worked to Bevin’s advantage, and he capitalized.
Revelations, allegations, controversy and scandal gave Bevin a path to victory.
The latch lifted on his window of opportunity after the Herald-Leader revealed links between the Heiner campaign and a Lexington blogger who for months circulated rumors that Comer had assaulted his college girlfriend. Then the window flung open after the woman made the allegations of abuse in a letter to The Courier-Journal.
Bevin played it perfectly.
He had already been chipping away at Heiner after pro-Heiner super PACs started attacking him, accusing Heiner of having “soiled the bed” with negative attacks.
After the reports about Heiner and Comer came to light, Bevin kept his focus on Heiner. He said Heiner had “disqualified” himself and offered during a debate on Kentucky Sports Radio that Heiner had told him about the allegations “months and months ago.”
In that debate, Bevin could’ve piled on Comer. Instead, he ensured that Heiner was equally damaged.
With the help of Jason Miller, a Ted Cruz spokesman and a partner at Jamestown Associates, Bevin deployed the best ad of the cycle, taking full advantage of the long war between Heiner and Comer.
The ad, “Food fight,” perfectly characterized the nastiness of the race in a funny way, and Bevin’s promise of “grown-up leadership” at the close of the ad, put him in position to be the beneficiary of some of the worst political fighting I have ever seen.
Just as important, Heiner’s last ad, which introduced the allegations against Comer to the larger electorate, resulted in what was known during the Cold War as MAD (mutually assured destruction), and Heiner and Comer were both damaged beyond repair.”
Kentucky’s primary was a bell weather event for 2014. What happened in Kentucky set the tone for what happened nationwide. Mitch McConnell handily defeated Matt Bevin. After that primary took place, an overwhelming victory for establishment republicans nationwide took place. Kentucky is a bell weather for 2015 and 2016. The most powerful Republican in the country Mitch McConnell has lost the ability to do permanent damage to those that run against him and Matt Bevin’s victory is evidence of that. Matt Bevin being the next Governor of Kentucky will do irreparable damage to Mitch McConnell’s iron fisted control of Kentucky politics. A Revolution started in Kentucky. Welcome to the Revolution! Tell Mitch McConnell that the conservatives are coming and we are bringing hell with us!