Kentucky Dems Demand McConnell Return Barbour Donation Over Pardons

ASSOCIATED PRESS

The Kentucky Democratic Party hit back Wednesday at the state’s Republican Party, demanding that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) return a $2,500 campaign contribution from former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) over his pardoning of sex offenders and killers.

“It is deeply troubling that Mitch McConnell’s campaign is bankrolled by Haley Barbour, someone who let convicted killers, sex offenders and child molesters roam free,” party Chairman Dan Logsdon said in a statement. “McConnell ought to immediately return Barbour’s contribution. The people of Kentucky deserve better than a senator who not only fails our working families, but also aligns himself with the likes of Haley Barbour.”

Barbour caused a stir in his final hours as governor back in 2012, when he pardoned 208 convicts — 41 of them murderers, sex offenders, or child molesters.

The Republican Party of Kentucky on Monday called on McConnell’s Democratic challenger, Alison Lundergan Grimes, to return two donations from men accused of sexual misconduct.

One of those contributions was a $500 donation from famed filmmaker Woody Allen, who last weekend denied his adopted daughter Dylan Farrow’s claims that he sexually molested her when she was a child.

The Kentucky Senate race is tight, with one recent poll finding Grimes up by 4 points over McConnell within a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at catherine@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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