McConnnell launches statewide attack ad against Democratic Senate challenger

McConnnell launches statewide attack ad against Democratic Senate challenger
© Greg Nash

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellFormer HUD Secretary: Congress 'should invest 0B in direct rental assistance' OVERNIGHT ENERGY: House approves .5T green infrastructure plan | Rubio looks to defense bill to block offshore drilling, but some fear it creates a loophole | DC-area lawmakers push for analysis before federal agencies can be relocated House approves .5T green infrastructure plan MORE (R-Ky.) and his Democratic challenger are fighting about an ad his campaign released about her "extreme" record on abortion that Amy McGrath claimed has doctored audio that misrepresents her position.

The radio and digital ad includes clips from a McGrath fundraiser in 2018, during her unsuccessful congressional race, and an interview with Kentucky’s WVLK radio during the campaign. 

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“I am further left, I am more progressive than anybody in the state of Kentucky,” McGrath is heard saying in a clip from her fundraiser in McConnell’s ad. 

In the WVLK interview clip, McGrath is heard saying “I don’t think government should be involved in making decisions on a woman's body.”

The narrator of McConnell’s ad said McGrath "supports late term abortion" and said the Democrat's pro-choice response “sounds more like a liberal Democrat from New York or California.”

McGrath’s campaign is planning to launch its own targeted ads in response on Friday, including TV, digital and radio spots. 

In the radio ad, which McGrath’s campaign shared with The Hill on Thursday, McGrath directly addresses McConnell’s radio ad.  

“This is Amy McGrath, and you might have heard Mitch McConnell’s ad using my voice, where it sounds like I say I’m further left than anyone in Kentucky. But it’s doctored audio. He cut off half the sentence,” she said. 

McGrath said the line was in reference to her not taking money from gun lobbyists and compared herself to others who served in office. 

“And then of course I don’t support late term abortions, Mitch McConnell is cutting out my words and lying to you,” she says in the ad. 

In interviews during her 2018 congressional campaign, which she lost, McGrath defended her abortion rights views. 

McGrath’s campaign said it also releasing a 60-second TV ad which reinforces the message in her campaign launch video earlier this month that McConnell represents “everything that’s wrong in Washington.”

McGrath, a retired Marine, narrowly lost the midterm to incumbent Republican Rep. Andy BarrAndy BarrThe Hill's Campaign Report: The political heavyweights in Tuesday's primary fights Democrat Josh Hicks wins Kentucky primary to challenge Andy Barr McGrath fends off Booker to win Kentucky Senate primary MORE, in the Republican stronghold district. 

She raised $2.5 million the first day of her campaign.