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Hullabaloo


Wednesday, November 04, 2015

 
Wingnut headquarters celebrates the Kentucky victory

by digby

In case you wondered how the right wing interpreted last night's big win in Kentucky, here it is:

Matt Bevin, the Tea Party-backed candidate who two years ago took on Senator Mitch McConnell in the Kentucky Republican Primary, and last spring won a contentious Republican Primary for the nomination for Governor, has defied the pundits and won the General Election for the Bluegrass State’s highest office.

Matt BevinWhen the Republican establishment’s poisonous Mitch McConnell defeated Matt Bevin in the 2014 Senate Primary Karl Rove used the defeat as evidence the Tea Party was dead and lauded the result of McConnell’s multimillion dollar content-free trashing of Bevin, calling the incumbent Senator’s campaign masterful and superb.

Other establishment Republican pundits were equally dismissive when Bevin defeated James Comer, Kentucky’s incumbent Republican Agriculture Commissioner, and former Louisville city councilman Hal Heiner, to win the gubernatorial primary. The Republican establishment dismissed Bevin’s grassroots-powered campaign and predicted a Democratic win and the loss of a winnable governor’s race.

We wonder what Rove will say today now that Matt Bevin has been elected Governor?

Naturally the political elite will be looking for ways to explain Bevin’s victory that do not involve embracing his conservative positions, but the reality is that after his narrow primary win Bevin didn’t back down from the conservative positions that powered his run in the primary.

"We will stand on our state sovereignty, we will do what is in our best interest, we will say to the federal government, who tries to bribe us to do what is not in our best interest with federal dollars ... we will say `keep your dollars, keep your suggestions,' and we will do what is best for the people of Kentucky," he said after his primary win.

And he stuck to that conservative platform throughout a campaign that saw the establishment and liberal media regularly predict his demise.

As the Louisville Courier-Journal (which endorsed his opponent) noted, Bevin called for an austere budget to pay down Kentucky’s state worker pension program’s unfunded liability, and he promised to move new teachers over to a 401k type program rather than a traditional pension. And as governor, Bevin promised to do away with the Kynect Obamacare portal, rescind the state’s Medicaid expansion and push for the Kentucky General Assembly to institute pro-business policies like right-to-work and lawsuit reform.

Bevin regularly hammered his Democratic opponent on the failures of Obamacare and the disaster Obama’s “clean energy” executive mandate would wreak on Kentucky’s coal industry – and its traditionally Democrat-leaning workforce.

While Bevin originally ran largely on economic issues, the Louisville Courier-Journal observed that his campaign pivoted toward social issues as the gay marriage issue “blew up” in Kentucky with a federal judge sending Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis to jail because of her refusal to issue same-sex marriage licenses. Bevin called for Gov. Steve Beshear to issue an executive order freeing Davis of the responsibility of issuing the licenses and had his photo taken with Davis.

Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, which represented Davis in her legal battles, also claimed that Bevin's victory was due in part to the Davis saga.

“The people favor traditional values and marriage, and they are tired of the political elites represented by Governor Beshear who are out of touch with ordinary, God-loving citizens," he said.
[...]
The victory was broad and deep with Bevin and Hampton winning all but 14 of Kentucky's 120 counties, including stalwart Democratic counties like Pike and Woodford, according to The Louisville Courier-Journal.

Republican State Senate President Robert Stivers called Bevin's win a "total repudiation" of the Democratic Party in Kentucky as well as Obama's policies on coal and healthcare.

Don’t believe establishment media stories about the death of the Tea Party movement.

It should be no big surprise when a Tea Party candidate who is outspent by millions loses, as Matt Bevin did in the race two years ago against Mitch McConnell. The story the establishment media isn’t telling you is that even when a Tea Party candidate loses a big race down ballot limited government constitutional conservative candidates continue to win, and when a limited government constitutional conservative like Matt Bevin heads the ticket, and runs as an unabashed conservative, it can lead to a virtual wipeout of the liberal establishment.

There you have it. First the Tea Party will wipe out the Republican establishment and then it will wipe out the liberal establishment. They're halfway there.

We're on the verge of Utopia.

Send money.

.