Ashley Judd (Brian Bohannon/AP) Ashley Judd (Brian Bohannon/Associated Press)

After listening to the latest secret recording made public by Mother Jones, there’s no question that Ashley Judd — and the Democratic Party — dodged a serious bullet when the actress decided not to run against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).While I agree with The Fix that the dust-up over said recording of a McConnell campaign opposition research meeting is “much ado about not much” since such research is a bipartisan ritual, there was enough oppo gold to sink a Judd candidacy.

The rap sheet was long for someone the McConnell people were eager to brand “an out-of-touch Hollywood liberal.” Judd loves President Obama and Vice President Biden. She was for cap-and-trade legislation. She’s against coal and mountaintop removal. All the stuff about the actress being mentally unbalanced (even the stuff about “pink fuzzy socks”) would have stung, but only a little. Judd wrote about her mental health issues in her book.

No, the desire to portray her as a carpetbagger was bound to snuff out her candidacy. In two clips you hear her talk about other places being her home that are not or in Kentucky. “So, to me, San Francisco is my American city home,” Judd is heard saying in one clip in the recording. That sooo wouldn’t have gone over well in such a conservative state. And then there was her reminiscence of a call with her sister the country singer Wynonna Judd.

And then I graduated in Kentucky and went to UK. But there was this moment when I was about 18 years old, and sister was on the road, and she called me, you know back when cellphones were that big and she said, “Lordy, I can’t wait to get home.” And it just clicked: Tennessee is home. [Laughter.]

Given the basketball and football rivalries between Kentucky and Tennessee, calling the Volunteer State “home” while running for a Senate seat in the Bluegrass State probably wouldn’t have gone over well. But, hey, as The Fix points out, all this is inconsequential because Judd isn’t running. Much to the Democrats’ relief, no doubt.

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