McConnell Endorses Trey Grayson over Rand Paul

The leader of the Senate Republicans, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, is taking sides in the GOP primary for his state's junior Senate seat.

McConnell has officially endorsed Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson over his GOP opponent Rand Paul, the son of libertarian Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas). The endorsement marks something of a last-ditch effort to boost the chances of the party establishment's pick before the May 18 primary.

"I rarely endorse in primaries, but these are critical times," McConnell says in an ad for Grayson. "I know Trey Grayson and trust him. We need Trey's conservative leadership to help turn back the Obama agenda."

Polls show that Paul, a Tea Party favorite with the backing of former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, has a sound lead over Grayson. Paul also has the support of retiring Sen. Jim Bunning, whom Paul and Grayson are competing to replace.

The Grayson ad featuring McConnell notes that Grayson also has the backing of former Vice President Dick Cheney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and Kentucky Rep. Hal Rogers.

Grayson says in the ad he is "the only candidate who actually has a record of slashing spending."

Grayson has called Paul's idea's "strange," chief among them his suggestion that terrorism may result from America's presence in other countries. Paul wants to eliminate the federal departments of Education, Energy and Commerce and has vowed to filibuster for a Constitutional balanced-budget amendment.

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