U.S. Rep. Rogers throws support to Grayson

May 03, 2010 | | Comments 26

U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers, R-Ky.

FRANKFORT — Republican U.S. Senate candidate Trey Grayson picked up a key endorsement Monday from a popular Eastern Kentucky politician, only to see a national Christian leader revoke his support and throw it to Grayson’s chief rival, Rand Paul.

U.S. Rep. Harold Rogers, a Somerset Republican who rarely makes endorsements in party primaries, offered his full-throated support for Grayson in the May 18 GOP primary election.

“Trey Grayson will be a strong fiscal conservative in Washington, just like he has been as secretary of state,” Rogers said. “He cut spending in his office by 15 percent without cutting services. That’s the kind of leadership we need to cut out-of-control spending, pay down the debt and balance the budget.”

Meanwhile, James Dobson Jr., founder of the influential Christian organization Focus on the Family, said he made “an embarrassing mistake” last week in endorsing Grayson and instead will back Paul.

The Grayson campaign had hoped to garner headlines solely with Rogers’ endorsement and was disappointed and puzzled by Dobson’s switch.
Dobson said in a statement Monday that he was “given misleading information” about Paul.

“Senior members of the GOP told me Dr. Paul is pro-choice and that he opposes many conservative perspectives, so I endorsed his opponent,” Dobson said. “But now I’ve received further information from obstetricians in Kentucky whom I trust, and from interviewing the candidate himself.

Dobson said he is satisfied that Paul is “avidly pro-life” and believes that “life begins at conception.” He did not identify “senior members of the GOP” and obstetricians he talked to, and calls to his Colorado office were not returned.

Paul, a Bowling Green eye surgeon and son of U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, said he thanks Dobson for his support and for his “thorough investigation of the views of the candidates in this race.”

Paul’s campaign said it was going to air a statewide radio ad with Dobson’s comments.

Grayson campaign manager Nate ­Hodson responded by again accusing Paul of lying about his stances on abortion and ­“falsifying a right to life questionnaire.”

Hodson was referring to a disagreement between the Kentucky Right to Life Association and Paul. The association, which is backing Grayson, claims Paul did not answer one of its 15 questions dealing with cloning in a survey of candidates. Paul said he did answer the question and that he is 100 percent pro-life.

Meanwhile, the Grayson campaign touted the potential benefits of Rogers’ endorsement, noting that Rogers has received 70 percent or more of the vote in the 5th Congressional District since 1992. Hodson said Republican voter turnout in Rogers’ district is expected to be the highest statewide.

“Kentuckians need a senator who will work with me and the rest of our federal delegation to fight for our values and priorities,” Rogers said in a statement supporting Grayson.

Paul has been openly critical of Republicans who “earmark” federal money for projects in the districts, a practice Rogers has used aggressively over the years. Paul has said he supports a ban on all earmarks, but Grayson has said it would be irresponsible to ban all earmarks.

Grayson said in a statement that Rogers “has always made us proud in Kentucky, and I am thrilled to have his vote and support.”

David Adams, campaign manager for Paul, declined to directly address Rogers’ endorsement. “No one, at this point, expects anything but a big Rand Paul lead based on his support for balanced budgets, term limits, a pro-life and pro-family agenda and a strong national defense,” he said.

Adams noted that U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning, a Republican from Southgate who is not seeking re-election, has endorsed Paul. U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Louisville, has not endorsed in the race.

–Jack Brammer

Filed Under: ElectionsFederal GovernmentHal RogersKY-5thRand PaulUS Senate Race

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  1. Dan says:

    An establishment politician endorsing another is just more snoozapalooza. What’s next, another push poll from Grayson showing him “within striking distance” of Rand Paul?

  2. Prof. Gilligan says:

    In today’s political environment, I don’t think an endorsement from the Southeast Kentucky King of Pork is something an aspiring Senate Candidate should covet.

    This is just another reason to vote for Rand Paul.

  3. Dan says:

    The king of wasteful pork spending supports the GOP candidate who also wants wasteful pork spending. What a joke!

  4. PBS says:

    I was already not going to vote for Grayson, but now just solidifies my decision. Grayson is a hack and Rogers is worse. Was he hoping for a Hal Rogers-Trey Grayson Parkway if he gets elected??

  5. Buck Feshear says:

    Hal Rogers is the one I really wish was running for this seat instead of Grayson or Paul. His endorsement will really make me look a little harder at voting for Grayson vs. sitting out the primary.

  6. Buck Feshear says:

    PBS: Hal Rogers had nothing to do with the road being named for him. That was Paul Patton’s doing. Get your facts straight if you are going to comment here. The naming of that road came as a complete surprise to Hal.

  7. Peter says:

    Look out of state Paultards, you don’t spit into the wind, you don’t tug on Superman’s cape and you don’t go to Eastern Kentucky and bad mouth Hal Rogers. Sit down, buckle up, because you are about to get schooled.

  8. Dan says:

    “Sit down, buckle up, because you are about to get schooled.”

    By Grayson’s impending defeat on May 18th?

  9. littleNate says:

    This helps but our campaign is in shambles.

    I hope Trey recovers from the Dobson reversal. It’s bad, real bad.

  10. The Terminator says:

    This endorsement is like the kiss of death.

  11. flacko says:

    Hahha — had a good laugh at the Hal Rogers parkway explanation. Who gets a road renamed after himself while still in office (and replacing DANIEL BOONE’s name!) and has it come as a complete surprise? Any humble man would have declined the offer when the lov guv called. Since Rogers likes his name plastered all over kingdom come, it stands to reason he approved the rename.

    Hal Rogers is a porker with an R by his name.

  12. tiredofalltheyellin says:

    I don’t think we can blame Hal for the parkway rename. That was something the current gov thought up (why, maybe a bit of kissi *ss)?

    The renaming of Kentucky’s parkways has been a disgrace and a complete waste of money. They had beautiful and wonderful names to begin with. There was no need to change them.

    And if we are going to name some road after someone, a least require that they be dead for at least 100 years. It takes that long to come to at least a partial consensus as to whether they are someone to be admired.

  13. tiredofalltheyellin says:

    Sorry – should have said ‘gov at the time’ rather than ‘current gov’.

    Or maybe it was someone in transportation that owed Hal a favor. Who knows.

  14. flacko says:

    tiredofalltheyellin, maybe the endorsement involved “Lawson’s frozen fish” and envelopes full of cash?

  15. yeah right says:

    Well an endorsement by Rogers seals the deal for me….I am voting against all incumbents, and anyone they endorse. If you want to keep things same as they are no do as the endorsement suggests, and vote Rogers back in next time along with Mitch….but if you want something better for yourselves and your children, vote them all out…..

  16. jcon says:

    Trey Grayson is the anointed establishment Republican candidate. Don’t vote for him. Rand Paul may not be perfect, but he is a real conservative, he is not part of the establishment. He will have to resist much tempation to accept the gifts and requirements of the republican party. I will vote for him.

  17. jon says:

    How is he (rogers) get n 70% of votes? Wats next? Hal Rogers National Forest lol

  18. PBS says:

    I did not state any facts on here “Buck”, just my opinion, sorry you did not like it.

  19. Buck Feshear says:

    Neither candidate is a true conservative. Paul is more of a libertarian and Grayson is more of a centrist. True conservatism is somewhere in the middle of these two.

  20. Doo-dah! Doo-dah! says:

    Hal Rogers is the fourth biggest Congressional ear mark spender in FY 2010. His endorsement of someone as a “fiscal conservative” does not mean much to me. Our nation will be much better off without big spenders like Prince Hal and his buddies roaming the Congressional halls.

  21. Weatherman says:

    Mitch is backing Trey so I’m backing Rand.

  22. Big Jay says:

    Time to send the establishment politicians and those they endorse home. Let them enjoy the experience the rest of us are having under the current regime. New blood in office may/will eventually become just as corrupt but we should get a year or two of honesty from them first. Out with incumbents! In with conservatives! Vote Paul.

  23. John says:

    the fact that Pork Rogers endorses Greyson (because he’s someone who will play ball with him) only helps me feel more comfortable with my decision to vote for Rand Paul.

  24. BGBob says:

    Perfect! Grayson gets the support of Rogers and McConnell. Rand’s numbers will improve over the next week.

  25. Dan says:

    How can Trey claim credit for cutting his budget when his budget requests were always for increases? Isn’t that a lot like lying?

  26. Halyn says:

    Neither one of them are any good…Price for Senate and Holbert for Congress!