GOP Runs Its Own Aqua Buddha Spot In KY-SEN (VIDEO)

You might think the Republicans want to move the Kentucky Senate race away from Aqua Buddha and back to something they’d rather talk about — like, oh, anything else. But in a new TV ad the NRSC is dropping on the Bluegrass State, Republicans are trying to make hay out Democratic nominee Jack Conway’s decision to turn tales of Republican Rand Paul’s years in college against him.

Conway, of course, turned national attention to Kentucky with his ad calling on Paul to explain stories of his days at Baylor University first told in the pages of GQ. The stories include membership in a banned campus group that Baylor officials said “mocked Christianity” and a bizarre “hazing” incident that included Paul and a friend tying up a woman and putting her in a creek before asking her to pray to the god “Aqua Buddha.”

The ad — and Conway’s decision to make Paul’s years at Baylor a campaign issue — drew fire from both sides. Paul and the Republicans condemned the spots as unfair, while some Democrats and reporters said they crossed the line and tried to hold Paul responsible for things he did as a teenager.The NRSC has made an ad out of the criticism, peppering this spot with quotes from MSNBC:

Paul, on the other hand, isn’t including any references to Conway’s Aqua Buddha spot in his own ad. But his message is similar to the NRSC’s: Conway is talking about Paul’s past because he doesn’t want to talk about President Obama.

Watch Paul’s latest ad, first reported by Greg Sargent: