Bill Straub: So far, GOP has little to show for control, so killing health care may be the best they can do

Once again we are sadly reminded that there isn’t anything so terrible in this world that Sen. Rand Paul and his loony-tunes political ideas couldn’t make worse. Paul, R-Bowling Green, has spent the last seven years in the U.S. Senate spouting gibberish, occasionally veering into the sensible lane, and then hiding behind his kookiness by shouting “freedom’’ and “liberty’’ at most inappropriate...

Mitch McConnell: Judicial nominees don’t grab headlines, but remain key to administration’s agenda

There’s an important issue that hasn’t gotten a lot of headlines, but it’s a key part of President Trump’s agenda. In fact, it will have a significant and beneficial impact on the future of our country for generations to come. This crucial issue is the confirmation of well-qualified individuals to serve as federal judges. Unlike the House of Representatives, it is the Senate’s responsibility...

Mitch McConnell: Why fighting opioid epidemic is necessary, and why we must fight back

The pain of the opioid epidemic continues to ravage communities across the country – especially here in Kentucky. For years, I have worked with my colleagues in Congress to fight back. Just recently, President Donald Trump took a significant step by formally recognizing a public health emergency for opioids. I commend the President for reaffirming his commitment to tackling this critical problem,...

Bill Straub: Mitch McConnell’s dilemma — pursue tax cuts, keep job and worry about disaster later

Here comes Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root ‘n Branch’’ McConnell, riding into town in the lead wagon of the Snake Oil Caravan with a wink and a promise that the tax cut legislation he’s about to unveil is good for what ails all those in the gathering crowd. This amazing package — “she walks, she talks she crawls on her belly like a reptile,’’ to cite Ray Stevens – will...

Bill Straub: Disaster debate another example of how Kentucky lawmakers in D.C. have lost their way

WASHINGTON – Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root ‘n Branch’’ McConnell took some time off last week to – quite appropriately – recognize the efforts of Kentuckians working tirelessly in behalf of those devastated by Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico as well as the victims of other recent natural disasters. Many Kentuckians, McConnell noted, “have generously given their time and labor...

Mitch McConnell: Kentucky now has friend at EPA, but work for coal jobs, families must continue

Under President Obama, the EPA didn’t want to come anywhere near Kentucky coal country. Now, the people of Kentucky finally have a friend at the head of the EPA. I was proud when Administrator Scott Pruitt, President Trump’s pick to lead the agency, accepted my invitation to come back to his native Kentucky in his professional capacity. In Hazard – the heart of coal country – I stood shoulder-to-shoulder...

Mitch McConnell: Kentuckians’ generosity eases burden in wake of devastating hurricanes

Several powerful hurricanes have recently devastated the southeastern United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Already, Congress has responded by providing funding to begin the recovery. We also passed legislation authorizing federal agencies that are critical to the relief efforts. Recently, the Trump administration requested a new round of supplemental funding, and the Senate remains...

Mitch McConnell: Recent National Defense legislation is good for our nation’s military, and Kentucky

I take seriously Congress’ solemn responsibility to provide our nation’s servicemembers with the training, weaponry and capabilities they need to protect our country. The Senate recently passed critical legislation that authorizes these resources, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), and I was proud to support it. Our nation faces numerous challenges around the world from both state actors...

Mitch McConnell: Congress faces number of pressing issues related to disaster relief — and debt ceiling

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) made the following remarks on the Senate floor regarding the Senate’s upcoming agenda items:   Congress has a number of pressing issues to address in the coming days.   There are three critically important things before us that need be done very quickly: pass disaster relief legislation to allow us to rebuild from Harvey and prepare for future disasters...

Mitch McConnell: Delivering tax reform won’t be easy, but it’s necessary to move Kentucky forward

By Mitch McConnell Special to KyForward Speaking with a group in Louisville, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed the single most important action we can take to put our economy back on the right track: comprehensive tax reform.  I welcomed Secretary Mnuchin to our state to hear the questions and concerns that Kentuckians have about the process and to talk about what we can do to help...

Bill Straub: Trump’s disposition should unsettle one and all so the question is — should he be replaced?

WASHINGTON – The immortal Hank Hill would often in frustration intone, “That boy ain’t right,’’ in reference to the antics of his son, Bobby, thus indirectly providing the citizens of this great nation with vital insight into the appalling behavior of the president of these United States, Donald J. Trump. It is well past time for America to come to grips with the overwhelming evidence that...

Bill Straub: Fear of change culminated in events in Charlottesville — where is the accountability?

WASHINGTON – So, how did we get here? It’s now apparent that the United States of America, the most powerful nation the world has ever seen, has as its president a man who is incompetent and, more importantly, has no moral core. During the 1950s it was said that certain politicians were “soft on communism’’ because they were insufficiently zealous in their abhorrence of the Russian bear....

Louisville legislator files measure to eliminate Confederate related state holidays

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today A Kentucky lawmaker is filing legislation for the 2018 session aimed at removing Confederate-related holidays from the list in the state’s statute. Rep. Jason Nemes, R-Louisville, said it includes Robert E. Lee Day on Jan. 19, along with Confederate Memorial Day and Jefferson Davis Day, both of which are observed June 3. However, it does not include removing statues across...

Bill Straub: Never popular with Democrats, McConnell now facing critics from the right as well

WASHINGTON – Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root ‘n Branch’’ McConnell, who has contributed more to the noxious political divide that plagues the nation than any other individual over the past decade, has serendipitously developed a way to unite Democrats and the GOP’s whacko right wing. They both want him gone. Republicans are becoming increasingly agitated with McConnell, of Louisville,...

Bill Straub: It’s well past time for McConnell, GOP to stand up to an increasingly erratic Trump

BELMONT, Maine – There comes a moment in the old Marx Brothers movie A Day at the Races where a man confronts Groucho, as Dr. Hugo Z. Hackenbush, and demands to know if he is a man or a mouse. “You put a piece of cheese down there and you’ll find out,’’ Hackenbush responds. Well, President Trump just tossed a whole slab of cheddar at the feet of Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root ‘n...

Bill Straub: McConnell learns the hard way that depriving 22 million of health care not the best idea

WASHINGTON – Listen closely and you might hear the slightly edited and decidedly un-dulcet tones of the late Howard Cosell bellowing in the back of your mind: “Down goes Root ’n Branch!!! Down goes Root ‘n Branch.” Indeed, it has not proved to be a particularly prosperous time for Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root ‘n Branch” McConnell, of Louisville, who this week...

Sen. Mitch McConnell: Across the state, the message is clear: Make Washington work for Kentucky

After celebrating our nation’s Independence Day, I traveled around the Commonwealth to hear directly from Kentuckians. By engaging with families, individuals, and community leaders across the state, I am better able to bring their concerns to the United States Senate and serve as their voice in Washington. During a visit to Paducah, I was proud to stand with local officials to announce that the...

Bevin opts out of appearance at Fancy Farm picnic, but attorney general Beshear will be on hand

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Republican Gov. Matt Bevin will not be adding any sizzle to the always fiery speeches that will be delivered in this tiny western Kentucky town next month. Bevin will skip the annual Fancy Farm picnic this year, citing a schedule conflict. But his Democratic nemesis, Attorney General Andy Beshear, will be there. The pair have been embroiled in an ongoing political tussle...

Bill Straub: When it comes to replacing Obamacare, McConnell, GOP make sure the fix is in

WASHINGTON – Let’s get a few things straight. Republicans control both the House and Senate and they are on the verge of replacing the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, with a hideous facsimile that, by almost all accounts, threatens the insurance coverage of about 23 million Americans, cuts Medicaid to the bone, reduces subsidies afforded to help individuals attain coverage and...

McConnell defends private drafting of health bill; Rand opposes delaying end of Medicaid expansion

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky defended Senate Republicans’ secret drafting of a new health-care law Tuesday, saying committee hearings that Democrats demand aren’t needed. “Look, we’ve been dealing with this issue for seven years. It’s not a new thing. We’ve spent a lot of time on it,” McConnell told reporters. “Nobody’s hiding the...