Alison Lundergan Grimes repeatedly refused to admit whether she did or didn't vote for Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012 during an interview with the Louisville Courier-Journal editorial board on Thursday.
Grimes, a Democrat, is running for U.S. Senate from Kentucky against incumbent Mitch McConnell, the GOP minority leader.
As widely reported in the media, Obama is very unpopular in Kentucky and in most red states. As such, Grimes has made a concerted effort to put distance between herself and some Obama administration's policies such as gun control and restrictions on the coal industry, the latter being a very important employer in the state. She even filmed a commercial in which she looked into the camera and affirmed that "I'm not Barack Obama."
"This election is not about the president; it's about putting Kentuckians back to work," Grimes explained to the board, adding that she supported Hillary Clinton in the 2008 presidential primary and that she is "a Clinton Democrat through and through." Grimes was an Obama delegate to the 2012 Democratic National Convention, however. In addition, "Through his fundraising for the DNC and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Obama has raised hundred of thousands if not millions of dollars for her campaign," White House Dossier points out.
From a long-time politically connected family and currently serving as Kentucky's secretary of state, Alison Grimes also noted that "I respect the sanctity of the ballot box, and I know the members of this editorial board do as well." See embed below. She also maintained that "The president is not on the ballot as much as Mitch McConnell wants him to be. It's my name, and it's gonna be me who's holding him accountable for the failed decisions and votes that he has made against the people of Kentucky."
She, of course, has a point about the secret ballot. On the other hand, President Obama himself this week insisted that "I'm not on the ballot this fall...But make no mistake: These policies are on the ballot, every single one of them." Apart from a few instances, all the currently elected Democrats in the U.S. Senate have voted in lockstep with the agenda of Obama and Harry Reid.Grimes' non-answer fell short with many political pundits, including Meet The Press host Chuck Todd, who declared on MSNBC that "And Kentuckians expect her to cast a tough vote on anything? Is she ever gonna answer a tough question on anything? You wanna be a U.S. senator? If you can't find a way to stand behind your party's president... you can disagree with him, but you can't answer that basic question and come across looking that ridiculous? I think she disqualified herself."As The Inquisitr previously reported, Grimes campaign operatives allegedly were captured on hidden video claiming that the candidate's support for coal is just an act so that she get enough votes to win. The footage also includes one Grimes insider proclaiming about the coal industry that "she's gonna f*** 'em as soon as she gets elected."
Most polls consistently show Mitch McConnell with a small lead over Alison Grimes with the election just a few weeks away.
Do you think a political candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes, or anyone else, should duck questions about how he or she voted in a prior presidential election?
[top image credit: Patrick Delahanty]