Sources: Judd 'leaning toward' Senate bid, decision by Derby Day

Sources: Judd 'leaning toward' Senate bid, decision by Derby Day

Sources: Judd 'leaning toward' Senate bid, decision by Derby Day


by Joe Arnold

Posted on February 15, 2013 at 6:58 PM

Updated Friday, Feb 15 at 7:09 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky (WHAS11) -- Actress Ashley Judd told influential Democrats in Louisville that she is leaning toward running for U.S. Senate against Mitch McConnell and plans to make her decision by Derby Day (May 6), sources tell WHAS11 News.

Judd dined Thursday night at the home of philanthropist Christy Brown, the widow of Brown-Forman Chairman & CEO Owsley Brown II.

Sources tell WHAS11 News that Judd's Louisville dinner companions included:

Congressman John Yarmuth,
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer,
Former Kentucky Democratic Party Chairman Jonathan Miller,
Waterfront Development Director David Karem, a former state senator,
Mary Moss Greenbaum, Founder and Producer of the Kentucky Author Forum,
Owsley Brown III,
Gil and Augusta (Brown) Holland
Judd's uncle, a Hardin County minister

Sources also tell WHAS11 that Ashley Judd was part of yet another gathering on Friday in Louisville which included opponents of mountain top removal.

This is a critical time for Democrats' hopes to unseat U.S. Sen Mitch McConnell (R), the longest serving senator in Kentucky history.

To raise enough campaign cash and build a campaign capable of defeating him, strategists believe Democrats have to start sooner rather than later.

Some strategists also believe that as Judd contemplates her decision, she freezes the field, essentially preventing other potential candidates from jumping in.

A source tell WHAS11's Joe Arnold that Judd is "meeting with people all over the state" as she contemplates her decision.

On Wednesday, Judd's publicist told WHAS11 the actress remained undecided.

"A definitive decision either way has not been made yet. Of course, Ashley remains flattered and honored by the continued interest and support that is being extended.  Beyond that, I have no further updates to provide to you at this time," said Cara Tripicchio.