The other day, the Dem-aligned Senate Majority PAC made a splash by going up in Kentucky with a very harsh ad hitting Mitch McConnell over his previous support for Social Security privatization. The ad linked that stance to an assertion that McConnell had “rearranged his portfolio” after private calls with a top Treasury Department official, implicitly suggesting McConnell had milked inside connections to bolster his own retirement security while gambling with that of others.
The ad ticked off the McConnell campaign, which circulated a fact check that said it had oversimplified the claims in the original article on which it was based and overlooked the fact that it had alleged no wrongdoing.
The McConnell campaign is trying to get TV stations to stop running the ad. I’ve checked in with Kentucky stations, and most declined to reveal their plans for the spot, though an official at one — Fox affiliate WDRB — told me: “We reinstated the spot, finding the assertions factual.”
A spokesman for Senate Majority PAC told me the ad is still airing “on every station we bought on.”
The dust-up shows that Democrats are pushing hard to make Social Security privatization a sleeper issue in the last days of the Kentucky Senate race. And they were handed an unexpected opening in this regard, when McConnell himself made an offhand reference to his own involvement with George W. Bush’s Social Security privatization efforts in 2005. “He wanted us to try to fix Social Security,” McConnell said during a recent speech. “I spent a year trying to get any Democrat in the Senate…to help us.”
You know, now that I think about it, that's part of the reason why Republicans hate Obamacare so much. Obama was able to get his major domestic policy program passed into law, whereas both of Dubya's major pushes to privatize Social Security and to reform immigration ended up so unpopular among Republicans that they couldn't pass either even with control of Congress.
I have no idea why Mitch is bringing this up again, especially here in a state like Kentucky, but hey, he's Mitch. Between lying about no wanting to kill Medicaid expansion by repealing Obamacare "root and branch" and now this Social Security scam, I think he might have done critical damage to his own campaign here in the final days.
Also, whining about taking a tough ad off the air? Please.