A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Bill Straub: Bevin didn’t get a landslide, but don’t count him out; Beshear faces uphill battle

Landslide Matt Bevin, the incumbent, didn’t exactly set the world on fire in Tuesday’s Republican gubernatorial primary, garnering just 52 percent of the vote against three other jamokes who aren’t even substantial enough to be referred to as nobodies. But don’t kid yourself. When November rolls around, the Commonwealth’s least-liked-in-the-nation governor could very well earn sufficient...

Kentucky Today: How the three democratic gubernatorial candidates stand on key issues

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today The gubernatorial primary is Tuesday and here is a guide on how the major Democratic candidates stand on some important issues. The responses are based on information gained from a variety of sources, including responses to a questionnaire, public statements, the candidate’s website and past news reports. The major candidates are defined as those who have raised at...

Al Cross: The primary looms and so do choices; voters may be asking, ‘Who am I most tired of?’

The race for governor of Kentucky is occasionally a harbinger of the contest that begins or ends the four-year election cycle, the race for president. In 1995, Democrat Paul Patton defeated Republican Larry Forgy, who had hoped to ride the GOP wave of 1994 but got caught in the undertow, and Bill Clinton carried the state in 1996. This year, Democrats see the possible ouster of Republican Gov. Matt...

Democratic gubernatorial candidates to debate at UK Wednesday in Gatton Student Center Ballroom

A Democratic party gubernatorial candidate debate will be held on the University of Kentucky campus this Wednesday (May 15). The debate is free and open to the public at 3 p.m. Wednesday in the Gatton Student Center Ballroom. The UK community is invited to attend. Candidates Rocky Adkins, Andy Beshear, Adam Edelen and Geoff Young will participate in the debate that is co-sponsored by the UK Student...

Debate for candidates for Democratic primary for Governor on May 15 at UK; Republicans declined

A Candidate Debate for the Democratic Primary for Governor in Kentucky will be held on the University of Kentucky campus Wednesday, May 15. Candidates Rocky Adkins, Andy Beshear, Adam Edelen and Geoff Young will participate in the debate that is co-sponsored by the UK Student Government Association, the League of Women Voters of Kentucky/Lexington and Gray Television and its nine TV stations serving...

Al Cross: Primary candidates trying to attract voters with largely irrelevant, misleading arguments

If you’re one of the relatively few Kentuckians who will vote in the May 21 primary for statewide constitutional offices, beware. Several candidates are seeking your vote with arguments that are largely irrelevant and sometimes misleading. Irrelevant political pitches are nothing new, but they dominate this month’s TV ads, videos, mail pieces and online chatter in a way we haven’t seen before. That’s...

Al Cross: Welcome, Derby visitors, to Kentucky; here’s a brief introduction to the political landscape

Welcome, Derby visitors! This column continues our longstanding tradition of giving folks who are in Kentucky for the big race, and those looking at Kentucky news media online, a snapshot of our current political landscape. We’re in the middle of a race for the Democratic nomination for governor. It’s our first contested Democratic primary for the office since 2007, an indicator of how the party’s...

Al Cross: Three Democrats for governor make their cases in first contested primary race since 2007

The shape of the May 21 Democratic primary for governor became clearer Wednesday night as the three major candidates held their first debate. Attorney General Andy Beshear’s front-runner status was confirmed by the criticism he got from former state Auditor Adam Edelen, during and after the hour-long encounter. State House Minority Leader Rocky Adkins, the taller, older guy standing between the other...

Al Cross: Slow pace so far for the primary and those seeking to be governor; we need to know more

In little more than five weeks, Kentuckians will go to the polls to begin the process of electing their next governor, or giving the current one four more years. But the race has seemed to have a slow pace. That’s partly because there are fewer journalists to cover it, leaving the candidates’ media messages largely unfiltered and unquestioned. But if you look closely, their first television commercials...

Al Cross: Bevin’s chances for re-election, if he runs, are better than you think, popularity notwithstanding

If Gov. Matt Bevin really does run for re-election, as he keeps saying he will, and as I believe he will, what chance does he have of winning? Better than you might think. Yes, he may be America’s most unpopular governor. In the latest Morning Consult state-by-state poll, for the last quarter of 2018, his approval rating was 34 percent and his disapproval was 51 percent. (Four other governors had...

Andy Beshear officially files to run for governor, calls candidates to release tax returns

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Accompanied by family members, Attorney General Andy Beshear and running mate Jacqueline Coleman filed their papers at the Secretary of State’s office on Tuesday as a gubernatorial slate for the May Democratic primary. 
Speaking to reporters, Beshear called upon all slates for governor to release their income tax returns for the last two years, in the interest of transparency.  
“After...

State representative Rocky Adkins raises $620,000 in only two months toward gubernatorial campaign

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Democrat Rocky Adkins has proven himself a formidable gubernatorial candidate, raising more than $620,000 in the two months since he entered the race. “We’re honored and humbled to have strong support across Kentucky,” said Adkins, the longtime House Democratic floor leader from Sandy Hook. “The outcome of our fundraising effort demonstrates the strength of this...

House Democratic Leader Rocky Adkins may be getting ready to run for governor, has family support

By Tom Latek Kentucky Today Democrat Rocky Adkins may be inching closer to a run for governor, telling reporters Wednesday that his family supports the idea. House Democratic Leader Rocky Adkins is still mulling over a run for governor in 2019. He has the full support of his family. (LRC photo) “It’s a must that they be on board, and they are,” Adkins said. “This is a statewide race, and it’s...

Rural Blog: Coal company wants to turn reclaimed Eastern Kentucky strip mine into solar farm

An Eastern Kentucky coal company on Tuesday said it wants to build Appalachia’s largest solar farm on a reclaimed mountaintop strip mine in far Eastern Kentucky. The Berkeley Energy Group said the project, which is still in the early stages, would be the first large-scale solar project in Appalachia. It didn’t say how much the project would cost; former state auditor Adam Edelen, who is...

Lexington health advocates join national effort to save medical coverage from repeal efforts

Doctors, health care advocates, patients and community members joined the National Save My Care Bus Tour Friday to stand against any action to repeal the Affordable Care Act and take away nearly 500,000 Kentuckians health care. At a press conference at the Lexington Public Library, community members sent a clear message to Washington: Don’t Take Away Our Health Care. Despite growing public opposition,...

Bill Straub: Edelen, Jones try to clean up Democrats’ mess with launch of New Kentucky Project

WASHINGTON – The late Raymond Overstreet, former Republican state representative from Liberty, a beloved figure in Frankfort, used to tell the story of Little Timmy who, while chasing a ball, fell into the privy. Timmy’s mother ran out to determine the cause of the commotion and could only spot a pair of eyes looking up at her from the muck. “Lord,’’ the mother exclaimed, looking up to...

Bluegrass ADD board resolute against sanctions that ‘plow up old ground’ about issues already resolved

By Judy Clabes KyForward editor In a specially called meeting, the Bluegrass Area Development District executive committee voted unanimously Wednesday to appeal the state’s order to repay $898,000 in “disallowed” costs for federal workforce programs from 2010-13. After hearing reports from attorneys John Gay and Jeff Walther about options related to next steps, the board also authorized BGADD’s...

Kentucky gets D+ in State Integrity investigation; toughened laws but gaps in oversight remain

By Ryan Alessi Center for Public Integrity A month after starting to investigate Kentucky’s Agriculture Department, state Auditor Adam Edelen called a meeting for his team for an update on the transgressions of ex-Ag Commissioner Richie Farmer. Auditors took turns sharing revelations at that February 2012 get-together about how Farmer, a former University of Kentucky basketball hero, ordered his...

Buck Ryan: Let’s not squander the lessons learned from Matt Bevin’s dickens of a wakeup call

A Tale of Two Young Voters: It was the left of times, it was the right of times, depending on whether you’re a future journalist or a current Honors student. The historic Kentucky election of 2015 has some people shaking their heads and others sorting their quantitative and qualitative research results. Who was The Biggest Loser on election night: Auditor Adam Edelen, the Bluegrass Poll or traditional-elite...

Auditor: Third of Ky.’s rural hospitals in poor shape; closure may be ‘unfortunate reality’

Location and financial strength of Kentucky rural hospitals (Map provided/click for larger view)   By Melissa Patrick and Al Cross Kentucky Health News   For a video of State Auditor Adam Edelen’s press conference, click here.   As many as one-third of Kentucky’s rural hospitals are in poor financial shape, and the survival of some will likely depend on their willingness...