Here's why this move from Reid is important:Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will help raise funds for the 2014 opponent of Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, according to a report.
Reid will hold a luncheon for Alison Lundergan Grimes, the Kentucky secretary of state and McConnell’s opponent in the 2014 elections, Kentucky News Channel 2 reported. The luncheon will take place in Las Vegas on Friday, Oct. 11 and tickets range from $1,000 to $5,000.
Reid’s move comes after he had told POLITICO last year that he would not publicly campaign against Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell because he didn’t think it would be appropriate to do so. - Politico, 9/13/13
Glad to see Harry help Grimes fuel her campaign. These days it sucks to be Mitch McConnell:The move marks a shift for Reid, who late last year said he wouldn't campaign against McConnell because he didn't think it was "appropriate."
Though McConnell pledged not to campaign against Reid during his 2010 race, he also shifted course and helped Reid's GOP opponent, Sharron Angle, raise money.
In 2004, GOP Senate Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) campaigned for John Thune (R-S.D.) against then-Democratic Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.). - THe Hill, 9/12/13
Not to mention McConnell has to also deal with Matt Bevin (R. KY):Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is officially the second most powerful Republican in Washington, ranking behind only House Speaker John Boehner in terms of seniority.
But McConnell is finding that he may also be the second most powerful Republican in his home state of Kentucky, where his freshman colleague, Sen. Rand Paul, has electrified local Tea Party activists, rocketed to the top of conservative's 2016 presidential contender lists, and, along with Sens. Ted Cruz and Mike Lee, staked out far-right positions on political issues so early that McConnell has had little choice but to follow in Paul’s footsteps or face criticism for being insufficiently conservative, a label longtime Kentucky politicos say would be laughable in any other political environment.
Although McConnell still dominates the power structure of the state GOP, he is increasingly having to take his junior colleague's moves into account, particularly because of the continued strength of the tea party in Kentucky.
"There are major differences between how Rand goes about what he's doing in Washington and how McConnell goes about what he's doing," says Scott Hofstra, a spokesman with the United Kentucky Tea Party, which was instrumental in Paul's election in 2010. 'Mitch McConnell gives the impression that it's all about his power, his authority. The future is all about him. That's not the case with Rand."
The Rand Paul effect would be difficult for any veteran senator to deal with, but McConnell's challenge is made all the more tricky by the inherent conflict between his role as Senate minority leader, which is typically the domain of relentless dealmakers, and the fact that he is facing aggressive opposition in his reelection effort from both a Tea Party-backed candidate on the right and the state’s Democratic secretary of State on the left. The result, political observers say, is a Senate minority leader with very little room to maneuver at home, and even less room to negotiate as the leader of Senate Republicans in Washington. - The Daily Beast, 9/13/13
Mitch has to constantly remind his supporters how much he's tried to defund Obamacare:
Bevin’s statement comes in the context of a nascent effort to “defund” the law before it goes into effect. The effort is being pushed by a group of Senate conservatives, who vow to block a new spending bill for the government unless all funding is halted for the health care law.
This is a quixotic effort. Most of the law is funded through mandatory spending, while the spending bill concerns discretionary spending, though the lawmakers insist they can get around this hurdle. Even so, Democrats control the Senate—and Obama holds the veto pen. Most establishment Republicans believe such a showdown will simply play into Obama’s hands, because the GOP will get blamed for a government shutdown.
Nevertheless, the Senate Conservatives Fund has launched a TV ad in Kentucky charging that McConnell is doing “nothing” to stop the law, and Bevin has jumped on the same bandwagon. - Washington Post, 9/12/13
McConnell is now forced to run on his record as an obstructionist because he really doesn't have a credible record as his party's leader in the Senate:With the subject line “I’m Still Fighting Against Obamacare,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell laid out his record of working against President Barack Obama’s health care law in a lengthy fundraising appeal to supporters Thursday night.
In the face of attacks from a Republican primary challenger in Kentucky regarding his conservative credentials, the McConnell campaign distributed the email Thursday night — a day after the Republican leader introduced an amendment to the energy bill that would delay implementation of the individual mandate. He also reminded supporters that he led the effort in 2009 for unanimous GOP opposition to Obamacare.
“What people don’t remember, is how many Republicans were toying with the idea of voting for it,” McConnell wrote. “With your support, I worked day and night to make sure Republicans fully understood the damage this law would do to our constituents’ health care. I worked to unite conservatives.” - Roll Call, 9/13/13
Meanwhile, Grimes has been spreading the word that the good people of Kentucky are mad as Hell at Mitch McConnell and aren't going to take it anymore:The Senate’s top Republican is showing signs of abandoning the deal-maker role he’s played with President Barack Obama’s administration, as he faces a Tea-Party-backed primary challenger and a Democratic general-election opponent with national support. He can’t afford to look cozy with Obama.
“McConnell will likely not be front and center during the budget negotiations but rather leave it to other Republican senators to do it,” said Republican strategist Ron Bonjean.
McConnell’s efforts to ensure his political survival are a pivotal part of Republican efforts to gain control of the Senate. Republicans need a net gain of at least five seats to win the majority in the 100-member chamber, and a loss in Republican-leaning Kentucky would make that goal tougher to reach.
Electoral pressures help explain why McConnell was the only one of the top four leaders in Congress to oppose Obama’s call for military action to punish Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s alleged use of chemical weapons against civilians. - Bloomberg, 9/12/13
I strongly recommend you read all of Grimes op-ed piece for the Huffington Post. It's a good read. Reid's fundraiser until next month so lets help give Grimes a head start. Please consider donating to her campaign:From blocking efforts to create jobs, to obstructing legislation to increase the minimum wage, to giving companies tax breaks and trade deals that ship our good Kentucky jobs overseas, Senator McConnell refuses to stand up for Kentucky's hardworking men and women. Senator McConnell's record of gridlock, obstruction and partisanship on these key issues of economic security is deplorable.
He also has absolutely no problem standing in the way of pay equity for women while raising his own congressional pay and quadrupling his own net worth on the backs of Kentucky taxpayers. And these are just the times when Senator McConnell has allowed a vote in the U.S. Senate. More than 400 times he has stood in the way and blocked votes from even happening. Senator McConnell has literally gone Washington, leaving Kentucky in the lurch and letting its people fall behind in the process.
There is a disease of dysfunction in Washington, D.C., and after 28 years, Senator McConnell is at its core. He embodies all that is wrong in D.C. He has wasted decades blocking legislation that would have helped Kentucky and our country move forward. But instead of advocating on behalf of all Kentuckians, Senator McConnell's top priority was to attack the Executive Branch and limit our President to one-term- - proving once again that his focus is misplaced and that he simply cannot get anything done.
Kentuckians have had enough. - Alison Lundergan Grimes, Huffington Post, 9/12/13