President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden will campaign next week in Kentucky, with each seeking to sway a hotly contested 6th Congressional District race that could help determine which party controls the House of Representatives next year. This content is made possible by your support to WUKY at #bestofbothworlds http://www.wuky.org/2018-fall-fund-drive-info#stream/0
Republican U.S. Rep. Andy Barr is in a tight race with Democrat Amy McGrath, a retired Marine fighter pilot. Trump's campaign said Friday it will hold a rally in Richmond, Kentucky, on Oct. 13. It will be Trump's third visit to Kentucky, but his first venture outside of the state's largest city of Louisville. Trump will appear at the Alumni Coliseum on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University at 7 p.m. EDT.
"Today, we learned that the unemployment rate dropped to its lowest level in 49 years, and the President who made that happen is coming to Kentucky," Barr said. "Kentuckians are better off today because of the policies I voted for and this President signed into law."
Biden will campaign with McGrath at a community fish fry at Bath County High School in Owingsville, Kentucky, on Oct. 12. Doors open at noon EDT. McGrath invited Democrats, Republicans and Independents to attend, calling Biden "an American patriot."
"We need more men and women of character like Amy in Congress, and I am looking forward to coming to Kentucky to campaign alongside her," Biden said in a statement released by the campaign.
Kentucky is a Republican state that overwhelmingly voted for Trump in 2016. But the 6th Congressional district has seesawed between the two major political parties five times since 1979. The latest was in 2012, when Barr ousted former Democratic U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler. Barr easily won re-election in 2014 and 2016.
But polling shows a tight race with McGrath, who has pitched herself as a moderate fed up with hyper-partisan Washington politics. Monday, her campaign announced she raised more than $3.5 million in the third quarter alone. That's more than Chandler raised for the entire election cycle in 2012.
McGrath has waged a mostly positive campaign, preferring to let outside groups aligned with her pay for attack ads on her behalf. Barr's ads have attempted to define McGrath as "too liberal for Kentucky," featuring a secretly recorded quote of McGrath at a fundraiser saying she is more progressive than anyone in the state.
"It's no surprise that Joe Biden is coming to the district to campaign for Amy McGrath, because we all know she voted for President Obama twice and wants to take us back to his destructive economic policies," Barr spokeswoman Jodi Whitaker said.
McGrath campaign manager Mark Nickolas declined to comment about Trump's visit.