Hours after Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) played an integral role in brokering a deal to reopen the federal government, former Alaska Gov. and tea party favorite Sarah Palin hinted that his reelection race will be her next target.
In an early Thursday Facebook post, Palin expressed support for New Jersey tea party Senate candidate Steve Lonegan, who lost his battle against Democrat Cory Booker. In the process, Palin turned her attention to a 2014 battleground state, vowing to "shake things up."
"Rest well tonight, for soon we must focus on important House and Senate races," wrote Palin amid Booker's win and the deal to end the federal government shutdown. "Let’s start with Kentucky – which happens to be awfully close to South Carolina, Tennessee, and Mississippi – from sea to shining sea we will not give up. We’ve only just begun to fight."
McConnell's re-election fight is already loaded with competition, headed by tea party primary rival Matt Bevin. Bevin picked up an endorsement from the Senate Conservatives Fund on Friday -- an announcement that labeled him as the one "not afraid to stand up" to the establishment that supports McConnell. McConnell's campaign dismissed the endorsement hours later, calling it a "dubious honor."
In a Wednesday interview with the Lexington Herald-Leader, Bevin declined to name Palin as one of the conservatives who had reached out to help. But he appeared confident that high-profile names would support his efforts.
"They are all watching," Bevin told the paper. "Many of them will come on board."