Top Dems Turn on Ashley Judd

Clintons and others woo another candidate for Kentucky Senate race

By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 20, 2013 11:22 AM CDT

(Newser) – Ashley Judd can do drama, comedy, and action, but top Democrats are increasingly skeptical that she has the chops to play the junior senator from Kentucky. While Judd looks toward a run for Mitch McConnell's seat next year, party power brokers—including Bill Clinton—are trying to convince Kentucky secretary of state Alison Lundergan Grimes to run instead, reports Politico. McConnell's seat is top of the party's hit list for 2014.

A Judd candidacy would guarantee the party both big headlines and fundraising dollars. But some are worried that a Hollywood liberal who currently lives in Tennessee won't play well to a Kentucky base. Grimes, a more established politician with strong family connections in the party, offers a far less controversial choice. But that's assuming Clinton and Co. can convince her to run at all. "Why would [Grimes] take on this race?” said a former McConnell chief of staff. “She could run for a state office with little opposition or run against McConnell and endure $30 million in career-ending advertising." Judd's big sister Wynonna, however, is predictably and firmly in her corner, telling Us Weekly, "Of course I'd vote for her!" Though maybe just because blood is thicker than water: "I don't agree with anything she says half the time. We're so different. But I love my sister. I am for Ashley."

In this publicity image released by NBC, actress Ashley Judd appears on the "Today" show to talk about her new book "All That Is Bitter And Sweet" in New York, Tuesday, April 5, 2011.   (AP Photo/NBC, Peter Kramer)
Actress Ashley Judd, a Kentucky native, speaks at a Democratic get-out-the-vote rally Saturday, Nov. 1, 2008 in Louisville, Ky.   (AP Photo/Brian Bohannon)
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