FRANKFORT — All four major candidates in Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race are on the air with television ads 75 days before the May 18 primary.
Republican Rand Paul and Democratic Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo started airing new TV ads Wednesday.
Mongiardo’s ad, the first of his campaign, focuses on his efforts to protest Republican U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning’s stand earlier this week against an extension of unemployment benefits.
“In 2004, Daniel Mongiardo took on the failed policies of Bunning/Bush,” the ad begins, referencing Mongiardo’s failed 2004 bid to unseat Bunning. “So, when Jim Bunning blocked unemployment benefits for 120,000 Kentuckians, Daniel took on Bunning again. Called Bunning’s actions a “disgrace.” Led rallies in Louisville and Lexington. He stood up for Kentucky workers—taking on Bunning and Tea Party supporters. Bunning’s backed down.”
Mongiardo’s ad comes a day after his key Democratic opponent, Attorney General Jack Conway, launched his own ad blasting Bunning, who is not seeking re-election.
Paul’s ad takes a less confrontational approach, saying he lives Kentuckians’ values and will take on those in Washington who spend too much.
The 30-second ad does not mention any of Paul’s opponents in the Republican primary. It is to run statewide on broadcast and cable stations. Republican Trey Grayson launched his first widespread ad on Wednesday, touting his efforts to cut spending as Kentucky’s Secretary of State.
Paul’s campaign manager David Adams said the ad does not mention Paul’s rivals “because there’s no need to. Rand Paul stands out from the crowd of professional politicians.”
The ad shows several bucolic scenes, including blades of grass, the morning sun and a boy swinging on a tire. As soft music plays in the background, it also shows video of coal miners, a barge on a river, his family, a conversation with veterans and a rising sun near a barn.
“As the bluegrass reaches up to the morning sun, our Kentucky values sustain us,” begins the ad. “As the winds of change blow, we need a strong voice fighting for our way of life.
“Rand Paul lives our values. A career doctor and grassroots activist, he’ll take on those in Washington who spend too much, destroying our liberty.
“As surely as the sun will rise, Rand Paul will fight every day for Kentucky.”
A Paul campaign release to announce the ad said Paul, a Bowling Green eye surgeon seeking his first public office, is for term limits, a balanced budget constitutional amendment and an end to pork barrel spending.