Hating on people is an essential part of campaigns. There are groups dedicated to it; our political parties become almost entirely consumed with hating on people every two years. A lot of money goes into it.
But when it comes to Ashley Judd, Republicans are pouring Haterade over the actress as if she had just won a bowl game.
Judd, a Democrat, may or may not challenge Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the nation's second-most-powerful Republican, for his Kentucky Senate seat in 2014, and the GOP has gone out of its way to make even the notion of such ambitions seem ludicrous.
On Friday the National Republican Senatorial Committee cheekily announced Judd as the Republican Party's own top Senate recruit, sending reporters a fake fundraising email:
Ashley Judd needs your help.
Despite the fact that she lives in Tennessee, Judd desperately wants to run for Senate in neighboring Kentucky.
I know what you're thinking: how can a person who has said "Tennessee is home," that San Francisco is "my American home" and that she "winters in Scotland" run for Senate in Kentucky?
Well, that's where you come in.
Zing! As political propaganda goes, it's not the worst.
A string of recent comments, made by Kentucky politicos, suggests Judd will go through with it. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., told ABC News last month that he "would be surprised if she doesn't run at this point." Kentucky's Democratic governor, Steve Beshear, said at a press conference on Tuesday that the actress is "seriously considering a race for the United States Senate and the Democratic primary" and would be an "effective and formidable opponent" against McConnell. Today, a Fox News columnist heard that Judd is definitely in, from an anonymous source.
Republicans acting as if they're happy about Judd running could mean one of two things:
1) They're completely scared that they will have to spend extra money on a race that could force one of their top leaders into an uncomfortably competitive race against a well-funded challenger; or
2) They actually are happy she's thinking about running and plan on raking in tons of national money to oppose this famous person from unseating the architect of the Republican Party's opposition to President Obama during the first few years of his White House tenure.
Either way, Judd may want to just take it as a compliment.