LOUISVILLE — As customary, former President Bill Clinton was late to arrive Monday night at the University of Louisville campus for his second appearance this fall for the campaign of Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Jack Conway.
The program was to start at 5 p.m.
It finally began at 6:05 p.m. and Clinton’s motorcade didn’t arrive until 6:34 p.m. He got on stage at 6:43 p.m.
Clinton’s close friend, Lexington businessman Jerry Lundergan, gave the first signal that the president recently named in a national poll as America’s most popular politician, was on his way.
Lundergan said Clinton sent him a Tweet while in flight to the Bluegrass State that said, “We’re on the way to Lundertucky.”
Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear said at the U of L rally that Conway’s opponent Tuesday, Republican Rand Paul, is “out of touch with reality.”
Noting that Republicans are confident of victory at the polls, Beshear pointed to a statue of Rodin’s The Thinker, an artistic masterpiece that shows a seated man in deep thought with chin on back of hand.
Beshear predicted that Paul and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Louisville, “are going to look like that” Tuesday night, “thinking about what happened” at the polls.
U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Louisville, called this election year “weird.”
To underscore how “weird” it has been, Yarmuth said, Republican incumbent U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning, who is retiring and not seeking re-election, has predicted that Yarmuth would win re-election Tuesday.
Yarmuth predicted that Paul, if victorious Tuesday, will “bring unwanted attention to this Commonwealth.”
Clinton’s voice cracked a bit at the beginning of his 36-minute speech. He already had made six campaign stops across the nation earlier during the day and still had another one to go in Florida.
But his voice grew stronger as he spoke.
He said he is surprised that he is not the Tea Party’s “poster child,” noting that during his administration he reduced the federal deficit and created many jobs throughout the land.
Clinton did not mention McConnell by name but criticized McConnell’s recent comment that his top priority the next two years would be to make sure President Obama is not re-elected.
“Now let me tell you something, whether you are for the president or not, right now this country is in a hole we still have got to get out of, and the No. 1 thing ought to be getting out of the hole and getting the country going and doing what’s right for the people,” Clinton said.