Political experts say that it would be a very difficult race for her to win and that her lack of residency in Kentucky and her Hollywood connections might have been a huge distraction. And the bigger problem was that she didn't have the backing of the Democrats (including both Clintons) because taking on Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is a big deal. And the chance to get him out of office is a priority and they are looking to the Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Grimes to do the dirty work.
In her statement, Judd explains her decision and thanks those who supported her.
I have never been intimidated by the prospect of serving Kentucky - and I remain unafraid of the Washington insider political machine that has controlled this Senate seat for three decades.
My chief concern in reaching this decision has only been the possibility that it disappoints folks. I’ve been blown away by the incredible encouragement, support, and confidence I’ve received, and I thank everyone who has reached out from our 120 counties and around our nation to offer their talents and time. I am humbled by the many supporters who have shown they are ready to work, organize, fight, and pray for a just economic future for Kentucky. I am especially grateful to four generations of my family for their endless understanding for my passion for service. Thanks Mom, for wanting to turn the carport into a field office - and for working on campaign slogans. And thanks, Dad, for being such a good listener at kitchen cabinet meetings, and making sure I was always clear on the “next action steps!”
Judd notes that she plans on supporting the eventual candidate with all her power, so they can get the politics back to the people of Kentucky.
Thank You (Ashley Judd)
Why Ashley Judd Flipped Against Run For Senate (Huffington Post)