Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., came onto the stage at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Thursday brandishing a long gun.
McConnell held the rifle over his head and the CPAC crowd loved it.
Moments later, McConnell handed the gift, a lifetime achievement award from the National Rifle Association, to his retiring colleague, Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn, who is leaving his term early for health reasons.
“This is for you,” McConnell said. “For your distinguished service.”
McConnell’s likely Democratic Senate opponent, Alison Lundergan Grimes, fired back on Twitter.
— Alison L. Grimes (@AlisonForKY) March 6, 2014
Kentucky’s senior senator faces his toughest re-election bid yet, and it is being made even more difficult by disenchantment among voters in his own party.
McConnell delivered a red meat speech to the conservative activists, pummeling President Obama and Democrats for having done “next to nothing for the little guy,” failing working families, and flaunting the Constitution.
“The president of the United States is treating our Constitution worse than a placemat at Denny’s,” McConnell said.
He ended with a pledge to live up to conservatives’ expectations if he is re-elected to the Senate and the Republicans take control of the chamber.
“If I’m given the opportunity to lead the U.S. Senate next year, I won’t let you down,” McConnell said.