McConnell readying for tough re-election fight - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

McConnell readying for tough re-election fight

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) -

U.S. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell is gearing up for a tough re-election fight next year in Kentucky.

He's also trying to prevent one.

McConnell is trying to head off a GOP primary challenge by cozying up to the tea party. And he's trying to scare off potential Democratic contenders - actress Ashley Judd is one - by providing a glimpse of his no-holds-barred political tactics.

The strategy seems to be working, so far.

No serious Republican opponent has emerged, and Democrats haven't yet fielded a candidate.

Judd is a Kentucky native who lives in Tennessee. She would have to re-establish a residence in Kentucky before she could challenge McConnell.

Defeating McConnell would be the Democrats' biggest prize of the 2014 election.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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