University of Kentucky and University of Louisville basketball fans may be united in one thing — their hatred for bitter rival Duke University.
So when campaign Web ad for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Tuesday used footage of the Blue Devils instead of either the Wildcats or Cardinals, his Senate rivals were quick to pounce on the incumbent's misfire.
The basketball-heavy state is divided between the two powerhouse schools, who will face-off this Friday in the Sweet Sixteen during the March Madness tournament. McConnell is an alumnus of both schools but roots for the Louisville Cardinals.
Local Kentucky reporters noted the clip on Twitter, and shortly after McConnell’s campaign took the video offline and revised it to feature a shot of Kentucky player Julius Randle dunking.
McConnell’s campaign spokeswoman, Allison Moore, said the mistake was made by an ad vendor and that the campaign was “horrified” when they found out.
"The ad was intended to highlight Kentucky's basketball dominance and obviously the Web ad vendor has become so accustomed to watching national championship celebrations in the Bluegrass State that they made a mistake with one of the images. Obviously we were horrified by the error and quickly changed it,” she said.
But McConnell’s Senate challengers were quick to knock him for the mistake. His primary opponent, businessman Matt Bevin, took to Facebook and Twitter to ridicule the video.
“Mitch McConnell really took this to heart in his latest ad #thingsmorepopularthanmitch #Duke” the candidate posted, with a link to an article about the mistake.
And expected Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes’s spokeswoman Charly Norton said it was further indication of how McConnell “has clearly lost touch with Kentucky.”
“It turns out he has been in Washington so long he does not even know the difference between Kentucky and Duke basketball,” she said.
Norton likened it to the recent viral sensation inadvertently produced by the McConnell campaign’s release of a Web video of stock footage of the senator, which people spliced into the opening montages of popular '90s sitcoms and paired with music to create comical mashups dubbed “McConnelling.”
"After becoming the laughingstock of the nation with #McConnelling, this shocking blunder is yet another in a string of gaffes and unforced errors from the McConnell campaign. As each new gaffe tops the last, we can hardly wait for what’s coming next,” Norton said.
Produced by Lucas Baiano, known for the cinematic spots he created for 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s campaign, the latest video features clips of McConnell speaking at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference about the potential of a Republican-led Senate, interspersed with images of Americana and scenes from across the nation.