Matt Bevin is making it a family affair, and Mitch McConnell wants Kentuckians to think of him as a conservative "workhorse."
With one month to go until the May 20 Republican primary, both candidates released new ads Monday.
Bevin's ad, shared with the Lexington Herald-Leader and set to start this week, features his children, one of whom says that "Mitch McConnell is telling a bunch of lies about my dad."
"Don't be fooled," Olivia Bevin said.
The Louisville businessman and challenger has nine children, four of whom were adopted from Ethiopia.
The ad features Bevin's kids saying things like "he plays with us, and he prays with us."
"I'm Matt Bevin and I approve this message," Bevin says at the end with his children laughing. "And I approve these messengers, too."
Allison Moore, spokeswoman for McConnell's campaign said in a statement Tuesday: "There's no question that Matt Bevin has a beautiful family, but it's unfortunate that he feels the need to bring them into the campaign to launch political attacks. All the statements our campaign has made about Mr. Bevin are true. Matt just isn't the candidate he's portraying himself to be to Kentucky voters."
On Monday, Louisville radio station WFPL reported that three members of Bevin's staff, including chief spokeswoman Rachel Semmel, have left the campaign.
McConnell's ad does not mention Bevin. It is titled "Conservative leadership" and focuses on McConnell's efforts on behalf of the Kentucky economy and against President Barack Obama.
The ad says McConnell is not a show horse, but is a "genuine Kentucky workhorse."
"Mitch fights for Kentucky miners against Obama's war on coal," the narrator says in the ad. "And he's leading the fight against Obamacare."
The Federal Election Commission website showed Monday that Bevin has about $455,000 cash on hand compared to the more than $10 million McConnell reported at the end of the fundraising quarter.
Sam Youngman: (502) 875-3793. Twitter: @samyoungman. Blog: Bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com.