politics

Politics
4:33 am
Tue October 14, 2014

McConnell and Grimes Debate Minimum Wage, Coal and Health Care

Alison Grimes and Mitch McConnell debate on Kentucky Tonight
KET

The highly anticipated debate between U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes is now history.  There were no obvious blunders or bombshell political revelations during Monday night's KET broadcast.

As expected, McConnell spoke with confidence about becoming senate leader in 2015.  Grimes echoed repeatedly, that after 30 years in Washington, the senior senator is out of touch with Kentucky's needs.  Coal was a prominent topic during the debate.  Grimes said she differs with the president on coal policies.  "We have to reign in the EPA, but we also have to work across the aisle in a coalition effort," said Grimes.

McConnell maintained federal regulations have cost thousands of miners their jobs.  "My job is to look out for Kentucky's coal miners.  This administration has engaged in an assault on our coal industry," said McConnell.

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Politics
2:14 am
Wed October 8, 2014

Millennial Voters Are Paying Attention — So Why Don't More Vote?

Rapper Lil Jon appears in a new ad for Rock the Vote's 2014 campaign. The organization was founded to get Generation X engaged in politics, and is adapting its tactics to reach millennials.
Courtesy of Rock the Vote

Originally published on Wed October 8, 2014 11:22 am

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

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Politics
3:13 pm
Tue September 30, 2014

Kentucky House Candidate Indicted for Not Reporting Sexual Abuse Involving Colleague, Minor

A candidate for a state House seat in south-central Kentucky has been indicted for failing to report a sexual abuse incident involving a former colleague.

John Wayne Smith is the Democratic challenger facing incumbent Republican Michael Meredith, who represents Edmonson, Hart, and Larue counties in the Kentucky House. WDRB-TV in Louisville first reported that Smith was indicted last week by a federal grand jury for failing to report an incident that occurred while he was director of the Bluegrass Challenge Academy at Ft. Knox.

The academy is a residential, educational program run by the state National Guard.

Smith allegedly had knowledge that 44-year-old Stephen Miller assaulted a female minor in February of 2013. Miller is also charged with sexual abuse against two other female minors in the months following the first alleged assault.

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Politics
5:41 am
Wed September 24, 2014

TV Spending for State Races Much Different in Kentucky, Tennessee

A new survey says Kentucky ranks next to last in the amount of TV ad spending for state races.

The nonpartisan Center for Integrity estimates candidates for Kentucky state House and Senate races have spent just $4,600 so far on TV ads this cycle, slightly more than was spent in North Dakota. But state Republican and Democratic leaders say they expect the TV spending to increase over the next few weeks as Republicans attempt to take control of the House for the first time since 1920.

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Politics
4:07 am
Mon September 15, 2014

Senate Challenger Bevin Seriously Eyeing 2015 Governor's Race

Matt Bevin (left) spoke to a Bowling Green resident during a campaign stop he made earlier this year while running for Senate.
Credit Abbey Oldham

The Republican who challenged Senator Mitch McConnell in this year’s GOP primary tells the Associated Press that he’s strongly considering a run for governor.

Louisville businessman and Tea party activist Matt Bevin won 35 percent of the Republican Senate vote in May, following a campaign in which he portrayed McConnell as too moderate. If Bevin joins the 2015 gubernatorial contest, he’ll enter a G-O-P contest that includes Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and former Louisville Metro Councilman Hal Heiner.

Warren County Republican Party chairman Scott Lasley says he doesn’t think a Republican candidate has to wear the Tea Party label to win the party’s nomination next year.

But the WKU Political Science Professor thinks it will be important for GOP candidates to at least reach out to grassroots organizations ahead of the primary.

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Politics
5:00 am
Sat September 13, 2014

Bayh Not a Candidate for Indiana Governor in 2016

Former Indiana Governor and Senator Evan Bayh says he won't run for another gubernatorial term in 2016.

The pool of high-profile Indiana Democrats running for Governor in 2016 has shrunk by one. Former Governor and Senator Evan Bayh says he won’t seek a return to the office he held from 1989 to 1997.

Bayh is a moderate Democrat who strongly considered a presidential run in 2008, before deciding not to run and endorsing Hillary Clinton’s campaign. He served two terms in the U.S. Senate but didn’t seek re-election in 2010.

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Politics
3:18 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Rand Paul: U.S. Must Be More Realistic In Foreign Policy Approach

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul says the U.S. has "gone too far in thinking we can re-create an American democratic paradise in the Middle East."
LM Otero AP

Originally published on Fri September 12, 2014 8:00 am

In a prime-time speech Wednesday, President Obama called on Congress to support his fight against the extremist group known as Islamic State. That call has been getting mixed reaction on Capitol Hill, including from Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky. He says that while he supports the fight against ISIS, he believes the president is "going about it in the wrong way."

His father, Ron Paul, twice ran for president as a candidate who never strayed from a firm libertarian path.

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Politics
4:33 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

A New Brand Of Paul Gains Support In Iowa

Sen. Rand Paul meets with local Republicans in Hiawatha, Iowa. He's made three trips to the state this year.
Charlie Neibergall AP

Originally published on Thu September 11, 2014 12:43 pm

It's still more than 15 months until the Iowa caucuses, and no one in the crowded field of Republicans with presidential ambitions has announced. But things are already happening in Iowa, especially for Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky.

Paul has reached out to Iowans who never considered voting for his father, Ron Paul, who made a respectable third-place showing there in 2012.

He's still popular with his father's old supporters. Many of them are in the so-called liberty faction of the Iowa GOP.

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Politics
11:00 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Comer Hosts Rally in Monroe County in Support of Gubernatorial Bid

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner and gubernatorial candidate James Comer

 Update: 12:50 p.m. 

James Comer has selected Republican State Sen. Chris McDaniel as his running mate. McDaniel's Northern Kentucky district covers part of Kenton County.

Original Post:

Kentucky’s Agriculture Commissioner will go home to formally kick off his 2015 campaign for governor.  James Comer will roll out his campaign and announce a running mate Tuesday in his native Monroe County.

"I want to be a governor for all Kentuckians and there are so many parts of this state that are forgotten about by Frankfort," Comer told WKU Public Radio.  "I'm proud of Tompkinsville, I'm proud to be from a small town,  and I'm proud of my friends and family.  I think if you want to know something about a candidate, go to their hometown and see the people they grew up with, their former teachers, friends, classmates, and business partners, and ask 'What kind of guy is this?'"

Comer served as a state representative for 11 years before being elected Agriculture Commissioner in 2012.  Many of the reforms he brought to the troubled Agriculture Department will be part of his gubernatorial platform.

Comer announced last month that he was running for Governor, and is joined by fellow Republican Hal Heiner and Democrat Jack Conway as candidates who have formally announced gubernatorial intentions.

Warren County Republican Party Chairman Scott Lasley says Comer’s time as Agriculture Commissioner gave him the opportunity to travel the state and build up contacts that could benefit him during his run for governor.

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8:30 am
Mon September 8, 2014

Politico: Rand Paul is America's Most Interesting Man (In Politics)

Lead in text: 
In a ranking of the Politico 50, the online political magazine says Kentucky's junior U.S. Senator--and possible 2016 presidential candidate--is scrambling the way we think about terms like "conservative."
A civil liberties-loving peacenik with millennial appeal? Who's willing to show up even at a midsummer NAACP convention to talk to a near-empty room? There's no doubt Rand Paul is turning out to be a different kind of Republican, bringing libertarian-and contrarian-ideas to the national stage in a novel and calculated blurring of Washington's otherwise rigid ideological battle lines.

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