McConnell endorses Grayson in US Senate primary

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FRANKFORT, Ky. — U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell has publicly endorsed his preferred candidate for Kentucky’s other Senate seat.

In a written statement, McConnell said Tuesday that Trey Grayson “has a track record of leading by example,” and called on Kentucky voters to choose him as the Republican nominee in the May 18 primary election.

Grayson, Kentucky’s secretary of state, faces five Republicans who are seeking the GOP nomination to run for the seat of U.S. Sen. Jim Bunning. Bunning retired under pressure from McConnell and other Republican leaders.

The endorsement puts McConnell and Bunning at odds. Bunning has endorsed Rand Paul, the son of Texas congressman Ron Paul, who made an unsuccessful bid for the GOP presidential nomination in 2008.