Power Players

GOP Senate candidate Matt Bevin: Nobody buying Mitch McConnell-Rand Paul ‘love narrative’

Power Players

The Fine Print

Matt Bevin, who is challenging Sen. Mitch McConnell in next year’s Republican primary in Kentucky, might seem like a natural friend for Kentucky’s Tea Party favorite Sen. Rand Paul. But then why is Paul supporting McConnell?

Bevin writes off the “Mitch-Rand love narrative” as a case of politics making for strange bedfellows and says Paul’s political aspirations factor into his endorsement of McConnell’s bid for a sixth term in the Senate.

“There is nobody in Kentucky that is fooled by this Mitch-Rand love narrative,” Bevin tells “The Fine Print.” “The people who have ultimately coalesced behind Rand Paul are people who have from the beginning been with me in large measure … And those very same people are looking for someone else to be an alternative to what they see as the bit of the charade, the pretend conservativism that we get from Mitch McConnell.”

In arguing that McConnell isn’t conservative enough, Bevin pinpoints Obamacare as a key issue that has made the Senate Minority Leader unpopular in his home state. Though McConnell voted against the Affordable Care Act, Bevin said he is “the master of voting in ways that look good on scorecards but then working behind the scenes.”

Bevin points specifically to a Republican coalition that is threatening to block a continuing resolution to fund the government through September 30 if it includes funding for the Affordable Care Act.

“Right now, he [McConnell] is the number one antagonist to Mike Lee and Ted Cruz and these others who are circulating this letter and trying to get conservatives to stand up and defund this as part of the continuing resolution,” Bevin said.

As the Senate weighs whether to intervene in Syria, with the Foreign Relations Committee already supporting military action, Bevin said there is currently no reason for the U.S. to get involved.

“We have no vested interest there,” Bevin said. “Any supposed lines in the sand whether drawn by us, by the world, whoever the supposed people are that have drawn these lines, these things are arbitrary, they make no sense. … It is not the responsibility of the US government or its military to be the world's policeman. It's not."

McConnell has yet to take a stance on Syria, but Bevin said if he supports a strike on Syria, it would become a campaign issue.

“I think the people of Kentucky, at the ballot box, will make this a key campaign issue,” Bevin said, “because the people of Kentucky and the people of America are overwhelming opposed to the idea of military intervention in Syria.”

To hear what Bevin’s response is to criticism that he’s not a true Republican, check out this episode of “The Fine Print.”

ABC’s Shushannah Walshe, Michael Conte, Gary Westphalen, Ginny Vicario, and Gale Marcus contributed to this episode.

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