While my following piece from Newsweek/The Daily Beast is not an April Fools’ joke like my earlier post this morning, it is yet another exhibit of our our political system is constantly playing unfunny jokes on the American people:
“We’d like to have you join us this afternoon for a discussion on the Ashley Judd campaign,” the young national talk show producer chirped into my phone. ”We understand that she will be announcing her candidacy within the next 24 hours.”
“I’d love to join you,” I responded. A recovering politician never turns down 15 minutes.) “But, uh, I’m pretty sure, uh, she’s not announcing.”
I looked over to the left side of my desk, at the draft exploratory committee papers that Ashley had asked me to prepare, still missing several items that I had requested from her.
“Oh, no,” the producer responded. “Our reporter has it on good authority from Ashley’s people that an announcement is imminent.”
I thought I was one of “Ashley’s people.”
Before I appeared on the show, I asked another of Ashley’s volunteer advisers, whom I knew had spoken to her that morning.
“Not true. Just another fabrication.”
The past several weeks had seemed like a dizzying blur of false testimony, as the national media seized any morsel of news or gossip to sate its ravenous appetite for Ashley Judd stories. As the actress contemplated whether to move back to Kentucky and challenge Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, I was alternating with Congressman John Yarmuth as witness for the defense against a steady stream of salacious recriminations.
Click here to read my full piece from Newsweek/The Daily Beast: “How Kentucky Democrats Duped the MSM and Helped Elbow Out Ashley Judd”
Get me some antibiotics — the piece has gone viral. Check out the following pieces (h/t Jason Delambre):
From Salon‘s Jillian Rayfield: Ashley Judd adviser: Kentucky Dems “duped” the press to force her out
An adviser to Ashley Judd said that the decision by the actress to pass on a challenge to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) next year was the result of a calculated effort by a small group of Democrats to stifle her electoral prospects.
In a story published Monday in The Daily Beast, Jonathan Miller wrote that the “most egregious disinformation” about Judd and her would-be candidacy “came from entirely anonymous sources” and helped create an unfavorable narrative. Before she announced last week that she will not run in 2014, reports suggested that Judd told a group of supporters at a private dinner, “I have been raped twice, so I think I can handle Mitch McConnell.” Miller, who attended that dinner, said he “never heard her say anything remotely like that.”
He also highlighted the recent suggestions that former President Bill Clinton had lobbied against a Judd candidacy in the hopes of getting Kentucky’s Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes to run instead. Follow up reports later confirmed that Clinton had no problem with a Judd bid, but Miller said the damage had already been done — and now McConnell may be the ultimate beneficiary of the conniving efforts by Democrats.
What happened to the Senatorial aspirations of Hollywood celebrity Ashley Judd? Some believed that she got chased out of the race after Republicans in Kentucky and the NRSC began launching attacks on her past statements, making her reluctant to spend the time and money. Others think that Kentucky Democrats changed their minds on a celebrity campaign after determining that Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes became interested. Both may be true, but according to Judd adviser Jonathan Miller in today’s Daily Beast, the real proximate cause of Judd’s withdrawal was a dirty tricks campaign not from Republicans, but from Kentucky Democrats — aided by a national media that got easily “duped”:
UPDATED 1:20 PM
More than 8 hours after its original publication, and the article is still the most popular posting at Newsweek/The Daily Beast. Check out this screen shot: