Kentucky Democrats Sell 'Moscow Mitch' Wrapping Paper, Spoofing McConnell's Campaign

Kentucky Democrats have started a wrapping paper war, countering Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's kooky seasonal fundraiser with their own holiday sale.

While the senator's re-election campaign started offering rolls of paper patterned with his face for donations over $25 last week, the Democrats launched their own sale Monday, offering gift wrap featuring the phrase, "Just Say Nyet to Moscow Mitch." The tagline refers to McConnell's infamous nickname.

LAST CALL: We're running out of our Mitch Christmas wrapping paper. Get it while you still can:

— Team Mitch (Text MITCH to 47360) (@Team_Mitch) November 25, 2019

Anything @Team_Mitch can do, we can do better. The only gift wrap you need is the one that sends a clear message: Say Nyet to #MoscowMitch

— Kentucky Democrats (@KyDems) November 26, 2019

McConnell's campaign gained attention for the quirky branding, which was festooned with the senator's likeness wearing a holly bow-tie and a Santa hat. Many shared their surprise at the gimmick from the conservative legislator. "This is real," CNN anchor Jake Tapper tweeted.

On Monday, Kentucky Democrats jokingly declared a "Wrap Battle" when they put their rival wrapping paper up for sale. "Anything @Team_Mitch can do, we can do better. The only gift wrap you need is the one that sends a clear message: Say Nyet to #MoscowMitch," the organization tweeted. Besides the slogan, the wrapping paper also features an image of McConnell wearing a Cossack hat emblazoned with a hammer and sickle.

The item can be preordered from the Kentucky Democrats' online store for $30. Doubling down on the holiday jeer, the organization also announced ornaments with the same phrase and design. The Kentucky Democrats store previously offered other products with the phrase and design, including Moscow Mule mugs. Cossack hats, t-shirts and coffee mugs.

McConnell was first dubbed "Moscow Mitch" in July over his refusal to advance legislation to strengthen election security in light of evidence of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. Since then, the nickname has haunted him. On November 14, a mobile billboard roamed the streets of Washington, D.C., threatening McConnell's re-election if he did not move in favor of impeaching President Donald Trump."Moscow Mitch: Do Your Duty or Lose Your Job," the billboard read.

Frustrated progressives and conservatives alike have homed in on McConnell's dislike of the nickname, using it to urge the senator to take action to impeach Trump. One former Trump and McConnell supporter, David Weissman, penned an open letter condemning the senator. "You are single handedly putting our Democracy at risk. This is why the people are calling you Moscow Mitch. If you don't like this nickname, do your job and represent the American people," he wrote.

After Republican incumbent Governor Matt Bevin lost the Kentucky gubernatorial election to Democrat Andy Beshear in early November, "#MoscowMitchIsNext" trended on Twitter. Despite excitement, many political analysts warned that Bevin's loss was not an indication of how McConnell's election will pan out. "Bevin clearly had a unique problem. Republicans won the five other statewide offices, four of them by more than a dozen points," one election analyst wrote for CQ Roll Call.

Mitch McConnell
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) walks to his office following the weekly Republican policy luncheon at the U.S. Capitol on November 5, 2019 in Washington, DC. Drew Angerer/Getty