Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes (D) released a new web ad Monday in her race for U.S. Senate that compares the job of her opponent, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), to lighting a house on fire and then claiming credit for putting it out.
"He calls himself a 'proud guardian of gridlock,'" says a male narrator, over an image of a burning house. "He's blocked the Senate over 400 times. Then voted to shut down the government, hurting Kentucky's economy."
The ad continues, "Mitch McConnell can't light the house on fire and then claim credit for putting it out -- especially while it's still burning."
The video rejects McConnell's contention that he deserves credit for ending the government shutdown earlier this month in a bipartisan deal. "I’ve demonstrated, once again, that when the Congress is in gridlock and the country is at risk, I’m the guy who steps forward and tries to get us out of the ditch," McConnell told the National Review after the shutdown.
Although the ad is only running online, it marks a significant escalation of rhetoric by the Grimes campaign. Her 2011 campaign for Secretary of State, by contrast, featured the candidate posing with her grandmothers.
The McConnell campaign responded to the video in a statement. "For days on end Alison Lundergan Grimes criticized Senator McConnell for fighting to delay Obamacare during the shutdown talks and now she has embraced his view when it becomes politically convenient. She reversed course only after her Democrat bosses in Washington told her to," said press secretary Allison Moore. "If you need a glimpse into the kind of partisan follower Alison Lundergan Grimes would be in the Senate it doesn't get clearer than this."