LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) -- Alison Lundergan Grimes has won Kentucky's Democratic U.S. Senate nomination, setting up a highly anticipated race with Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell in November.
Kentucky's secretary of state easily won Tuesday's vote. She looks to be McConnell's toughest opponent since his first election in 1984, when he narrowly ousted Democrat Dee Huddleston. Recent polls show the two locked in a virtual tie.
The daughter of a former state party chairman and close personal friend of the Clintons, Grimes has raised $8 million since announcing her candidacy last year. She has about $5 million left.
To win, Grimes will have to separate herself from a Democratic president who is unpopular with more than 60 percent of Kentucky voters. In ads and campaign stops, Grimes has fashioned herself as an independent Kentucky woman.