With all that Koch money, it’s beginning to look like McConnell might have a little something under his nose.
According to The Hill, the Republican Party in the state of Kentucky is offering all-expense paid trips to “volunteers” willing to join Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on his campaign tour bus and “contribute to an enthusiastic atmosphere” wherever he goes. That’s right, the Republican Party wants to pay folks to party for the Grand Old Party.
The scoop comes from an email obtained by The Hill earlier this month, detailing Kentucky Republican Party regional political director Taylor Bumgardner pitching “volunteers” to jump on the bandwagon with McConnell, or tour bus in this case, and all meals, lodgings and transportation would be provided.
Bumgardner’s email stated:
Senator McConnell is seeking volunteers to join him on a 3-day campaign bus tour around the state on October 20-22 to show our support for Kentucky coal. You would join local supporters in contributing to an enthusiastic atmosphere at each of his events.
McConnell’s tour was launched only Monday, but so far McConnell has been side-stepping the question of paying supporters, as fired at him by his opponent Alison Lundergan Grimes and the local media.
The allegations come, unfortunately for McConnell, in the wake of bussing in supporters on multiple occasions in the past, so the claim made by Grimes is not without standing. McConnell has used the same technique to fluff crowds at other speaking engagements, as well, such as the annual Fancy Farm picnic. Democrats, of course, take such theater as a sign of weak support for either McConnell, the Republican Party, or both, which potentially bodes well for Grimes.
Kentucky Democratic Chairman Dan Logsdon has stated:
It should surprise no one that Mitch McConnell is left to purchase grassroots support after he and his allies have spent more than $50 million running from his failed 30-year record in Washington. Momentum is clearly on Alison’s side as she draws record-breaking crowds of Kentuckians and runs laps around McConnell’s rusted DC-based campaign.
Though Grimes does, indeed, tend to draw large crowds who come without pay, and energy at Grime’s rallies seems to be high, recent polls still suggest McConnell is in the leading, and perhaps even pulling away from Grimes. Of course, polls always depend on which organization is doing the polling, no? Time will tell, as usual.
McConnell continues to dance around directly answering the question of paying supporters. One has to suppose, with all that Koch money, after a while, the world must start to look like your own private disco.