LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is airing her first attack ad in Kentucky's hot race for U.S. Senate.
In the new ad, released on Tuesday, Grimes accuses Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell of voting to increase out-of-pocket Medicare costs.
But the McConnell campaign says Grimes is pushing the panic button and trying to scare seniors.
Grimes' ad features Don Disney, who says he's a retired coal miner.
In the ad, Disney is seated with Grimes in a rural setting and addresses a question to McConnell.
"I want to know how you could have voted to raise my Medicare costs by $6,000? How are my wife and I supposed to afford that?"
There is a long silence before Grimes leans over and tells Disney, "I don't think he's going to answer that."
The ad apparently refers to a procedural vote McConnell made in 2011 on an early version of a budget proposed by House Budget chairman Paul Ryan.
But the Washington Post Fact Checker has termed similar claims by other Democratic candidates so out of date as to be "laughable" and called on them to "drop the repeated Medicare references."
But following a speech here in Louisville, Grimes stuck by the ad.
"We'll let Mitch McConnell explain his vote for the Paul Ryan budget, which actually increases Medicare costs and privatizes social security. He has to respond to seniors where he has voted and why it's failed Kentucky," she told reporters.
In a statement, the McConnell campaign blames Grimes' fellow Democrats who took $700 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare, and accused Grimes of "resorting to the oldest, most cynical attack in the Obama playbook to scare Kentucky seniors."
But Grimes defends her first use of an attack ad.
"We're pointing out how Mitch McConnell, after 30 years, has a failed record when it comes to Kentuckians, and instead has chosen Washington D.C. insiders instead of putting people in the state first.
The Grimes ad will run across the state for one week.
Also Tuesday, a pro-McConnell PAC - the Kentucky Opportunity Coalition - began running an ad attacking Grimes.