A direct mail piece that Mitch McConnell’s campaign sent to Eastern Kentuckians in the closing days of last year’s U.S. Senate race, prompting a lawsuit from Democratic opponent Alison Lundergan Grimes, won several campaign awards last week.
When Campaigns and Elections magazine handed out its annual Reed Awards in Las Vegas Friday night, McConnell’s “Fraud Alert” mailer, which Democrats decried as an attempt at voter suppression, won five awards, including “best direct mail piece for 2014.”
The outside of the mailer described it as an “Election Violation Notice,” and on the inside listed areas where the McConnell campaign said Grimes was trying to mislead voters.
Grimes campaign manager Jonathan Hurst called the mailer “despicable,” and Grimes sought an injunction against distributing the mailer in Franklin County Circuit Court. A judge denied the request.
The mail piece, produced by the Lukens Company, also won for “best direct mail piece for Republican statewide candidate,” “best mail piece for a bare-knuckled street fight
victory,” “toughest direct mail piece” and “most daring and successful tactic.”
McConnell’s campaign also won for best website and “best use of social media targeting,” with credit going to GOP tech guru Vince Harris’s firm. Harris has since signed on with U.S. Sen. Rand Paul.
McConnell beat Grimes by more than 15 percentage points.