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Friday, December 9, 2016

After Mitch McConnell suggested that a Republican Senate majority could force another government shutdown by trying to force President Obama to sign spending bills loaded with GOP-friendly riders, it was only a matter of time before the minority leader’s words resurfaced in an attack ad.

That inevitability became reality on Monday, when McConnell’s Democratic opponent Alison Lundergan Grimes released a new web ad turning the incumbent Republican’s threat against him.

The ad slams McConnell as “Senator Gridlock,” and uses numbers from Pew State, Moody’s Analytics, and the Bureau of Economic Analysis to charge him with costing Kentucky $127 million through the shutdown.

“And Mitch McConnell wants to do it again,” text on the screen warns.

The tough spot underscores how serious a wound McConnell may have inflicted upon himself by raising the specter of another government shutdown. The 2013 edition was immensely unpopular and a tremendous waste of money; reminding voters of the GOP’s culpability for the episode both hamstrings McConnell’s central message (that giving Republicans control of Congress would get the government back on track), and reinforces Grimes’ (that McConnell himself is a central cause of Washington’s dysfunction).

Ten weeks before Election Day, it’s still anybody’s race; according to The Huffington Post’s polling average, McConnell leads Grimes by just 2 percent.

Screenshot: Alison For Kentucky/YouTube

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