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Can Grimes Beat McConnell

McConnell Blows Lead

It looks like the fickle fellow of football and politics has gone over to Team Switch.

I mean Old Mo, Momentum.

It’s like we’re in the fourth quarter of a smash-mouth, slobber-knocking grid grudge match. Alison Lundergan Grimes has quarterbacked her underdog eleven to a slim lead over powerhouse Team Mitch.

A translation for non-football fans: Grimes is up 46-44 in the current Bluegrass Poll. In late August, the third quarter, the same poll had Team Switch down by four.

After his team blew the lead, quarterback Mitch McConnell blew his cool on the radio – more on that in a minute. Anyway, it’s easy to get testy when it seems you’re losing the big game you thought you had in the bag.

After all, Grimes was just an “empty dress,” according to a GOP bigwig in Washington. Team Mitch evidently figured her for a pushover, too.

I’d bet the farm that Sen. McConnell was sure by now he’d be in the equivalent of a blowout high school ballgame, one where the refs keep the clock going to bring a swifter end to the inevitable.

Who can forecast the final score in this nail-biter? But the football faithful know that when an underdog unexpectedly gives a powerhouse a run for its money, the latter squad sometimes gets rattled and starts fumbling and tossing interceptions.

It’s the same in politics.

The other day, McConnell journeyed to Georgia to hobnob with GOP senate hopeful David Perdue, a millionaire who said he is “proud” of making a ton of money as a big-time outsourcer.

Team Switch pounced on that fumble.

The Grimes campaign made Perdue and McConnell birds-of-a-feather. They added Mitt Romney to the flock. They pointed out that Romney was one of the first outsourcers and that he had recently come to Kentucky to help raise cash for Team Mitch.

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Ire, of course, is often a mask for fear. McConnell might be at least a little scared that “his personal power” is waning. So he popped his cork on the radio.

Team Switch wants us to keep Georgia on our minds: “McConnell’s embrace of politicians who have earned millions in their business careers off of shipping jobs overseas tells Kentuckians all they need to know about his refusal to fight for them and their jobs.”

So after his rainy night in Georgia, McConnell returned home and got snarky on Kentucky Sports Radio, said to be the state’s most widely listened to radio program.

Host Matt Jones said the senator was "needlessly angry" and “unnecessarily combative.” He panned the senate majority leader wannabe as "the consummate politician."

Team Switch called a blitz. McConnell’s “combative and hostile appearance on Kentucky Sports Radio only further solidified Kentuckians' view of him as an untrustworthy Washington insider, willing to play dirty tricks in an attempt to hold onto his personal power,” said Grimes campaign manager Jonathan Hurst.

Press secretary Charly Norton sacked the quarterback: “Moreover, his abrasive, condescending interview was a stark contrast to Alison’s in-studio appearance a couple weeks ago, in which she deftly answered every question and welcomed the opportunity to debate McConnell on the show.”

Team Switch also emailed out a red-hued “Mad Mitch” graphic that shows the senator scowling and raising his fist.

Ire, of course, is often a mask for fear. McConnell might be at least a little scared that “his personal power” is waning. So he popped his cork on the radio.

Will he do likewise on TV? McConnell is supposed to debate Grimes Monday night on Kentucky Educational Television.

Can he keep calm and carry on?

Supposedly, McConnell has never trailed in an October poll. For sure, Old Mo has never been on the other side this late in a McConnell senate campaign.

The captain of Team Mitch is used to getting his way by buffaloing political foes. “His glower has usually been enough to dissuade those who consider crossing him,” Jason Zingerle wrote in Politico.

That “glower” has failed to faze Grimes, whom an admiring Politicususa website called “all Southern steel magnolia with her gorgeous smile and her sugar coated daggers.”

Berry Craig

Whatever else happens in the debate, I’d also bet the farm that Grimes won’t wilt or blow her stack. But can Team Mitch doctors cure their quarterback’s bad case of fumbleitis?

Berry Craig