LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- In a blistering retort to a Mitch McConnell campaign commercial, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Bevin on Tuesday said McConnell is lying about what Bevin claimed as his "education" on his online LinkedIn account.
On the professional networking website, Bevin's profile page had listed the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as an example of his education. Bevin, however, never attended MIT, yet had participated in the Entrepreneurial Organization's MIT program on an MIT campus.
After The Hill first published a story about the MIT reference, Bevin has since replaced MIT on his LinkedIn page with "School of Life" as his education.
"Newspapers say Bevin was dishonest about his resume," a narrator says in the McConnell ad, "claiming he graduated from prestigious MIT. Not true, again."
"It's a lie, plain and simple," Bevin said of the McConnell ad. "He made the claim that I said this and refuted it. And he's being given a tremendous amount of credence by folks for making up lies and then pointing out that it's a lie, when he's the one inventing them."
Bevin said no one with experience on LinkedIn would have concluded that he had graduated from MIT.
"Clearly, Mitch McConnell -- not being part of the real world -- doesn't understand how people in the private sector work," Bevin said. "This isn't even a resume. It's an online basically database of information of things people have done and where they currently are."
While McConnell's ad suggests Bevin is stretching the truth about his education, the non-partisan Factcheck.org says McConnell has been stretching the truth when his campaign paints Bevin as a tax delinquent.
Because Bevin accepted a forgivable government loan to help rebuild his family's historic bell factory after a fire, McConnell's campaign calls him "Bailout Bevin."
"When you are the least popular senator in the United States of America among your own constituents, the only method you have for victory is to try to make your opponent even less popular than you," Bevin told WHAS11 in a telephone interview Tuesday. "I don't think it's working very well for him but I don't think we've seen the end of it either."
With three attack ads against Bevin since he announced his candidacy about one month ago, it appears McConnell is taking his primary challenger seriously.
"They are going to look at this as... it is the only threat they have," said Sherman Brown, a Democratic strategist. "The fact that they are doing this tells you it is their only focus."
Bevin said he has gained both confidence in his chances and supporters from nearly every state since announcing his bid.
"There is incredible support for this effort," Bevin said. "When we started, we had a path; it was narrow. It's only getting wider. It has widened extraordinarily,in the last 3 weeks.I'm grateful for Mitch McConnell's treemendous getting out of my name. I mean, his efforts are backfiring . It's just been terrific, and it makes people wonder, who is this guy? They look under the hood."