BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) The election for senator is several months away, but the republican primary is getting a lot of attention.
It features longtime incumbent Senate Minority leader Mitch McConnell and Louisville business man Matt Bevin.
Bevin said you just need to look at McConnell's record and see there is a need for a change.
"I think I don't need to be alone in that. I think the people of Kentucky are asking this. I think it's why they're happy to have a choice. There is no perfect candidate, myself him or anyone else, but to have a healthy discussion in a primary, that's the point of primaries actually. We want to have a primary where people can have a healthy discussion," said republican senate candidate Matt Bevin.
Bevin said he would have handled the fight against the new health care law differently than McConnell.
"Had I been in Senator McConnell's shoes, specifically as the Senate minority leader, I would have done everything in my power to unite the caucus and not divide the caucus. He intentionally undermined the effort of those in his own caucus who were trying to keep the debate in the senate," said Bevin.
McConnell said he knows a lot of people are after him including Bevin.
"I'm a big target. As one of the leaders in the senate, you end up getting a lot more friends and a lot more enemies than you do if you're just a senator from some state somewhere in America. We'll have a big race here next year about the future of the country, but the fundamental issue is this, Do we want to the leader of the senate to be someone from Kentucky or do we want the leader of the senate to be someone from Nevada who also believes coal makes you sick?" said Sen. Mitch McConnell R-Kentucky.
The topic of coal will be a big part of many campaign discussions to come.
McConnell and Bevin will face off in the republican primary this spring.
The winner will likely meet democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes in the general election next fall.