Shortly after polls closed Tuesday, the Associated Press called the
McConnell now faces what will likely be a more significant challenge in the general election from Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who glided to the Democratic nomination Tuesday.
The race promises to be one of the most expensive of the midterm election, and will test Grimes' call to replace the man
The Kentucky primary was one of the most-watched contests Tuesday, the busiest day of voting so far in this midterm year. Other key races include a crowded contest for the Republican Senate nomination in Georgia and a congressional race in Idaho that marks another test of the Republican establishment's efforts to curtail the influence of outside tea-party-inspired groups.
As it became clear he was on track to win the primary, McConnell has turned his attention to Grimes. His general election pitch relies heavily on his potential status as the next Senate majority leader, while casting the 35-year-old as simply another candidate to help keep President Obama's party in control of the Senate.
Grimes used a recent bus tour of the state to hammer McConnell over his recent comment to a small newspaper that it was not his job to bring jobs to the state. She's also drawn on her potential history-making role as the state's first female senator, a bid to rally a key constituency in a state where
Two recent polls showed Grimes and McConnell evenly matched in the November battle. Both campaigns will now tap into growing war chests in an attempt to frame the November choice on their terms.