June 9, 2014

Alison Lundergan Grimes Kisses Up To Washington, D.C. Instead Of Standing Up For Kentucky

Alison Lundergan Grimes has claimed that she would be an independent voice unafraid to stand up for Kentucky. But when push came to shove and Grimes had her chance to deliver a clear-cut message to Harry Reid on coal at their D.C. fundraiser last week like she promised, Grimes failed to deliver.

Alison Lundergan Grimes’ campaign insisted last week that she’d use a high-dollar fundraiser with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid as a forum to promote Kentucky’s coal industry and demand action to protect the use of fossil fuel. That didn’t happen, according to an audio recording of the affair obtained by POLITICO through a source at the event.

Grimes had promised that she would use the fundraiser to express how “livid” she was over Obama’s new EPA regulations.

“Alison is absolutely livid about the new rule and plans to use the event to share the stories of how Kentuckians are hurting and demand that the Senate take action to invest in clean coal technology,” said Grimes spokeswoman Charly Norton.

In fact, she didn’t even utter the word that she said she’d fight for.

The one word she didn’t say during her 11-minute speech: “coal.”

Grimes’ campaign told the press earlier on Monday that Grimes had “strong” words for Reid.

Alison Lundergan Grimes had strong words with Senator Reid regarding her displeasure with President Obama’s new [Environmental Protection Agency] regulations and the negative impact it could have on Kentucky families,” Grimes campaign manger Jonathan Hurst said in an email Monday.

But there was “no way” Grimes could have spoken to Reid about coal given the timing of his arrival and departure, according to a source for Politico.

A Washington consultant who attended the event said “there is no way” Grimes could have privately had a discussion with Reid at the event because he arrived late and left before the Kentuckian.

Audio obtained from the fundraiser showed Reid heaping praise upon Grimes, calling her the “the perfect candidate” and that he was “depending” on her.

Reid spoke effusively about Grimes, calling her the “perfect candidate” and saying that he was “so proud of her campaign.” …

Reid called Grimes “something special” and predicted that Democrats “are going to win” in Kentucky. …

“So Alison, I’m not only depending on you, and my 54 Democratic senators are depending on you, but our country is depending on you,” Reid said. “I say that as unequivocally as I can.”

When it was Grimes’ turn, Grimes was just as effusive about Reid as he was towards her, calling him “leader” and casually referring to how often they spoke.

When she took the floor, Grimes was gracious to Reid. She referred to him as “leader” several times and made no effort to hide their closeness, referring casually to how often they speak on the phone. “The leader always tells me that when we talk as you all know, there are a lot of friends in this room who have been with this campaign before it was cool to be with this campaign,” she said. “And he always says when we talk on the phone, ‘Alison, it is quality not quantity.'”

Grimes had the chance to stand up for Kentucky, but in her most opportune moment, she passed to kiss up to Washington, D.C. That shouldn’t come as a surprise given how Reid is already saying he is depending on her and Grimes is referring to Reid as the “leader.”