Bevin, McConnell trying to avoid Trump crossfire - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Bevin, McConnell trying to avoid Trump crossfire

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Kentucky's two top Republicans are holding their fire as an uncivil war rages in their party.

Presidential nominee Donald Trump is on the attack against Republicans who are turning on him after the release of a lewd tape.

Gov. Matt Bevin and U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell are trying to avoid getting hit by the crossfire.

When WDRB caught up with Bevin following a domestic violence awareness event at the Capitol, he not would not answer questions about other issues.

“I want to keep the focus on this. I really do. This is really the purpose of today. So, thank you, though,” Bevin said.

Bevin walked away when asked directly about Trump.

It was the same story on Tuesday night in Elizabethtown.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell declined to go beyond his written statement released last week calling on Trump to apologize. “I don't have anything to say about the presidential race today,” McConnell said.

University of Louisville political science professor Dewey Clayton says the reason for the silence from both men is simple. “Oh, it always is politics,” Clayton told WDRB.

Bevin is trying to help the GOP take control of the State House, and needs to pick up seats in parts of the state where Trump is popular. “Trump is going to do well there, and he doesn't need to offend Trump there to make sure that he can still pick up those areas,” Clayton said.

Clayton says McConnell is fighting to keep his majority in the U.S. Senate, and does not want to openly oppose the party's presidential nominee.

“If things turn so that a lot of Trump supporters feel betrayed by him, that could be problematic. Some of those people could decide to stay home,” said Clayton.

So, for now, when it comes to Trump's so-called locker room talk, Kentucky's two top Republicans are not talking.

“We'll have a press conference soon, and give people a chance to talk about whatever they like,” said Bevin.

Bevin also declined to comment when asked about controversial GOP State House candidate Dan Johnson, who posted offensive images on his Facebook page.

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