A Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in Kentucky is suing his own party, alleging favoritism of one candidacy over others.
Ed Marksberry claims the Kentucky Democratic Party is unfairly and illegally promoting the campaign of Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, the most well-known and well-funded candidate in the Democratic field so far.
Marksberry, an Owensboro contractor, filed a lawsuit this week against Kentucky Democratic Party Chairman Daniel Logsdon. Marksberry says in suit that he was shocked by a July 1 email from the state party announcing Grimes’ campaign because the party had refused to make announcements on his behalf. Marksberry claims he was told that sending such communications would violate the party’s by-laws, which prohibit the party from using its resources to support one candidate over another in a primary election.
Marksberry tells the Lexington Herald-Leader the state party is favoring the rich over the working class in his party. Neither the Grimes’ campaign nor the state Democratic party have commented on the lawsuit. Marksberry could not be reached Tuesday by WKU Public Radio.
Marksberry, who lost a 2010 bid for Congress, says he is considering running for the U.S. Senate as an Independent. The winner of the Democratic primary next May will face either Republican incumbent Mitch McConnell or Tea Party activist Matt Bevin, the only two candidates so far in the GOP primary election.
Consider it a "take two": Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes Tuesday will officially kick off her U.S. Senate campaign in Lexington.
When Grimes first announced she was joining the race earlier this month, the event was widely described as disorganized and uninspired. The campaign's senior adviser in later days told reporters Grimes would soon have a second "official" announcement of her Senate campaign.
That's taking place Tuesday afternoon in Lexington. Gov. Steve Beshear will be joining Grimes. When Grimes first announced she was running for Senate, Beshear said she hadn't given him any heads up that she had made a decision.
With Beshear's appearance Tuesday, it appears the Grimes camp is hoping to display a unified Democratic front behind the Secretary of State. Last week, longtime U.S. Senator, former Governor, and Owensboro native Wendell Ford endorsed Grimes for Senate.
Grimes has accused U.S Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of being "out of touch" with Kentucky voters and values. And several polls show the Louisville Republican holding dangerously low favorability ratings with Kentucky voters.
A county clerk in southeastern Kentucky has asked the Executive Branch Ethics Commission to determine the propriety of a fundraising email sent last wek to government email accounts by Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes.
Republican Laurel County Clerk Dean Johnson filed the complaint Thursday, a week after receiving the email from Grimes, a candidate for U.S. Senate.
Johnson is asking the Ethics Commission to determine the legality of the secretary of state sending fundraising emails to county clerks who report to her in in matters pertaining to elections. Johnson said he thinks that Grimes acted unethically by using a government email list to raise money and that she also might have run afoul of state law.
Grimes political adviser Jonathan Hurst had no immediate comment.
Though the election isn't until next year, the campaign is in full swing. TV ads have been running for weeks already.
One of the Fancy Farm organizers, Mark Wilson, said Bevin was confirmed as a speaker after he announced his candidacy on Wednesday. Two of Kentucky's highest-profile Democrats, Gov. Steve Beshear and Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson, won't attend the event.
The political speeches are part of a church picnic that doubles as a fundraiser for St. Jerome Parish. The annual event typically draws some 10,000 people and generates about $250,000.
Political newcomer Matt Bevin has declared the time has come for Kentucky voters to oust Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell.
Bevin criticized McConnell at a Frankfort press conference Wednesday for being a part of "the politics of failure" for nearly three decades. And Bevin offered himself as the alternative, describing himself as a man of the people, having grown up in a farmhouse with wood stoves for heat, a garden for vegetables, and land that provided assorted animals for meat, milk and eggs.
The Louisville investment adviser charged that McConnell "has lost touch with our state, its people and our values."
Meanwhile, the McConnell campaign released a new TV ad charging that Bevin accepted a $200,000 taxpayer bailout for companies he owns in Connecticut. The ad calls him "Bailout Bevin."