Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

September 13, 2012

Benton to manage McConnell’s re-election campaign


FRANKFORT — If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.

That may be the thinking of Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell who announced Thursday that Jesse Benton will manage his 2014 re-election bid.

Benton, 34, managed the 2010 general election campaign of Kentucky’s other Republican U.S. Senator, Rand Paul, a tea party and liberty movement favorite. Benton also previously worked in campaigns for Texas Congressman Ron Paul, Rand Paul’s father who twice ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for president.

The move may surprise those who remember McConnell supported Rand Paul’s 2010 Republican primary opponent Trey Grayson. That alienated tea party and liberty movement supporters of the two Pauls, but McConnell moved quickly after that primary to cozy up to Rand Paul

While the relationship seemed cool at first, the two men have forged a closer relationship. In recent appearances in Kentucky, each has praised the other, and McConnell praised Rand Paul during a speech at the Republican National Convention.

McConnell said Thursday that Benton is “literally the best” at running grass-roots campaigns.

“We’re committed to running a presidential-level campaign in Kentucky and that starts with a presidential campaign manager,” said Senator Mitch McConnell. “Jesse is literally the best in the business at building and organizing conservative grassroots movements and I’m thrilled he’s chosen to return to Kentucky to lead my campaign.”


For the full story, read the Sept. 14 print or e-Edition of the Glasgow Daily Times.