(LOUISVILLE, Ky, October 28th, 2004) -- Democratic Senate hopeful Daniel Mongiardo used anger and humor Thursday to respond to insinuations by powerful Republicans about his sexual preference. This, while national media continue to cover what is fast becoming the hottest political race in the state. WAVE 3's Dina Kaplan has the story.
A close contest turns personal.
"These are the dispicable attacks of a desperate senator who is dangerously out of touch with reality."
That's what Democratic Senate hopeful Dan Mongiardo in response to suggestions about his sexual preference raised by supporters of Senator Jim Bunning.
On a campaign stop earlier this week, State Senate president David Williams referred to Mongiardo as a "limp wrist." State Senator Elizabeth Tori said "I'm not even sure the word 'man' applies to him."
Thursday, Mongiardo reminded Rotary club members that he co-sponsored the bill supporting a constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage in Kentucky and said if elected he would support a similar bill in Congress.
"If it comes up in Washington, I will vote for it," said Mongiardo.
Mongiardo told a group of reporters he is not gay. Then he was then asked can a single man run for office without rumors being spread?
"It's a shame but I'm hoping all of this attention could help me get a few dates," Mongiardo said.
Later, Mongiardo rallied supporters at Fourth Street Live with Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson.
While Bunning was tracked by CNN on Tuesday, Mongiardo was trailed Thursday by a New York Times reporter.
Mongiardo's campaign manager says in the past 21 days the campaign has raised $500,000, plus received $1.3 million dollars from the National Democratic Party.
"We are at exactly the position that we thought we would be in and we're excited about the prospects," Mongiardo told WAVE 3 News.
WAVE 3 News called the Bunning campaign Thursday afternoon to ask how much money his campaign has raised, but did not get a response.
According to an Associated Press report, the senator had more than $3 million dollars at the end of September, compared to - at the time - just $345,000 in Mongiardo's bank.
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