A group that advocates for greater government transparency is challenging Kentucky’s U.S. Senate candidates to limit ads purchased by outside groups.
The Herald-Leader reports that Common Cause of Kentucky sent letters this week to the campaigns of Republican Senator Mitch McConnell and Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, asking them to sign a pledge aimed at limiting outside spending on the Senate race.
Under what the group calls the People’s Pledge, a candidate would agree to give to charity half of the cost of any ad bought by outside groups during the campaign. Grimes campaign manager Jonathan Hurst told the paper that Grimes has previously called for both campaigns to sign the pledge.
The McConnell campaign had not commented on the request by Common Cause of Kentucky as of Wednesday afternoon.
Kentucky’s Senate race will be one of the most closely-watched races in the country, with some analysts predicting it will also be the most expensive Senate race in history.
Indiana Republicans will vote next month on a provision in their party’s platform that would reintroduce language about “traditional marriage.”
The Indiana GOP eliminated the language regarding traditional marriage in 2012. But party delegates last week decided to reintroduce the issue to the party platform. Republican delegates next month will vote on whether to add the following language to their platform: “We believe that strong families, based on marriage between a man and a woman, are the foundation of society.”
Not all Hoosier State Republicans back the effort to reintroduce marriage language into the party’s platform. The Indianapolis Star-Tribune quotes GOP delegate Megan Robertson—who is gay—as saying the effort is “bad for the Republican Party.”
While the proposed platform also contains language that recognizes “diverse” family structures, Robertson says the platform should focus on issues that unite the party, as opposed to dividing it.
Those backing the platform say it contains recognition of “blended families, grandparents, guardians, and loving adults” who raise children.
With an expected 30 percent (or less) voter turnout in Tuesday's primary elections, about 930,000 Kentuckians will take to the polls to determine which candidates will appear on the ballot during this fall's general election.
Kentucky political observers will be looking to see what impact the election's outcome will have on the Kentucky Democratic Party's bid to retain control of the state House against a Republican challenge.
With 23 seats contested in the House, here's a quick look at some of the races that will add clarity to that question:
District 10. Western Kentucky state Rep. Ben Waide, a Republican, has announced he'll be seeking Hopkins County judge-executive post, leaving the field wide open to three Republicans and a lone Democrat vying for a chance to replace him. Waide replaced longtime Democratic incumbent Eddie Ballard in 2010, besting Democratic opponent Michael Duncan by 1,596 votes. Democrats will be eager to win this seat back despite its newfound Republican leanings.
Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes says that turnout for this Tuesday’s primary election isn’t likely to exceed 30 percent.
Grimes says without a presidential contest and without ballot initiatives like a local option sales tax, turnout among Kentucky’s 3.1 million registered voters will be lower than in some previous years.
“Based on conversations that we have had with our county clerks throughout the state, the fact that there is no local option question available, or on the ballot, and when we’re looking at the absentee numbers that are being reviewed by the state board of elections, they are lagging from where we were at this very time in ‘06 and 2013," the Secretary said.
About 1,000 offices will be up for grabs Tuesday across 3,700 voting precincts.
The Democrat running for Kentucky’s Second District U.S. House seat says Congress should pass a federal minimum wage bill.
Ron Leach was in Glasgow Thursday, and told WKU Public Radio one of the biggest themes of this year’s election will be the growing income inequality seen throughout the nation in recent years. The retired U.S. Army Major says he’d like to see the minimum wage increased $10.10 an hour.
“There’s no excuse for anyone working full-time, 40 hours a week, living in poverty. So, beyond the minimum wage, we need to be looking at a living wage,” the Meade County Democrat said. “We have way too many folks out there working full-time or working multiple jobs, yet still qualify for federal assistance.”
Leach is running for the seat currently held by three-term Republican Brett Guthrie of Bowling Green.
Leach attacked what he called “immoral levels of compensation at the top” while employees earn “poverty wages.”
The Kentucky Senate’s $20 billion budget proposal aims to defund the Affordable Care Act in the commonwealth, but its provisions won’t affect the program.
The Senate’s executive budget that was passed Monday disallows state general funds from being used to fund the ACA, the commonwealth’s Medicaid expansion and the state health insurance exchange, Kynect, all of which are federally funded until the year 2017.
But the state budget only affects fiscal years 2014-2016, making the measure largely a political one in advance of November’s elections.
When asked what his chamber would do if the 321,000 Kentuckians enrolled via Kynect lost their coverage due to the ACA being defunded, Sen. President Robert Stivers said he would support “supplemental programs,” like health savings accounts, to help insure them.
Virtually any time a major event ripples across Washington, the Justice Department is positioned near the center of it.
From the disappearance of a Malaysian airliner that carried three Americans on board to the fate of voting rights for millions of people, the attorney general has an enormous portfolio. And the stress to match it.
But after an elevated heart rate sent him to the hospital last month, Eric Holder says he's on the mend.