Appalachian newspapers blast Paul on drug issue

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Newspapers in Kentucky's mountain region,
a key battleground in the U.S. Senate race, have been sharply
criticizing Republican Rand Paul for his opposition to using
federal money to combat local drug traffickers.
Willie Sawyers, publisher of The Sentinel-Echo in London, said
Paul's statements "get scarier by the minute."
"That Rand Paul wants to represent us in Washington is a scary
thought," Sawyers said in the column that has appeared this week
in numerous papers, including The Richmond Register and the
Commonwealth Journal of Somerset. "It's obvious he doesn't know
us."
Both Paul and Democrat Jack Conway are courting voters in the
mountain region, where polls show the fight against drugs to be a
top issue in the race.
The sharp criticism from Sawyers, a lifelong Republican,
suggests Paul may have alienated his Republican base in heavily
Republican southeastern Kentucky, the safe votes that he should
have locked up at this point in the race. That could leave Paul
trying to make amends with the GOP at a time he should be focused
on reaching out to swing voters.
Mountain Republicans tend to have a populist bent when it comes
to embracing the federal funding that has paid for a modern highway
system, badly needed flood control projects and a popular anti-drug
initiative dubbed Operation UNITE.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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