A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Mitch McConnell: Bill to protect abortion survivors should not be a partisan issue

Caring for innocent children and their mothers is a moral imperative. To put these principles into action, I announced, as Senate Majority Leader, that we would vote on the “Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act,” offered by Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE) in the coming days. His bill, on which I’m proud to be an original cosponsor with nearly forty of my colleagues, would direct any physician...

Al Cross: At 77, McConnell faces big decision about his legacy — a Trump enabler or a Senate leader?

Mitch McConnell turned 77 Wednesday. He’s at the point in life where you reflect, sometimes at length, on how you will be remembered. If the Senate majority leader had any such ruminations in the last week or so, they should have troubled him. He risks going down in history as the main enabler of an autocratic president’s challenge to our constitutional system of government. Mitch McConnell The...

Rural Blog: Trump, McConnell urge TVA not to close two of its oldest coal-fired plants, one in Paradise

The Tennessee Valley Authority’s Paradise Fossil Plant in Muhlenberg County. The town of Paradise, which no longer exists, was made famous in 1971 by John Prine’s eponymous anti-strip mining song. (Photo by Kathleen Cole) President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky are trying to convince to the federally owned Tennessee Valley Authority not to close two of its...

Mitch McConnell: Standing together, we will continue making great strides for Kentucky and our nation

In his State of the Union address, President Trump presented his vision for our country’s future. He articulated our national values, our economic potential, and the needs of families throughout the county. I was proud to once again welcome President Trump to the U.S. Capitol for this important speech, and I applaud his leadership. Standing together, we will continue making great strides for Kentucky...

KDA approves more than 42,000 acres of industrial hemp for planting in 2019

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has announced the Kentucky Department of Agriculture approved 1,035 applications to cultivate up to 42,086 acres of industrial hemp in 2019. The KDA also approved 2.9 million square feet of greenhouse space for hemp cultivation.  “The numbers tell you what you need to know about the excitement about hemp in Kentucky,” Quarles said. “The growth in the number...

Mitch McConnell: Democrats refusal to address southern border crisis another example of absurdity

There is a humanitarian and security crisis at our nation’s southern border. Our country is threatened by the inflow of drugs and criminal aliens. Career border security experts continue to express strong support for physical barriers. The simple truth is these walls and fences work. In fact, the Trump administration reports that in four border sectors where physical barriers were recently built...

Ryan Quarles: USMCA must be passed to protect, expand market access for American agriculture

On the heels of the successful passage of the federal farm bill, and with a new year upon us, there is a major opportunity to protect and expand market access for American agriculture in 2019: Congress must pass USMCA. The last year has been dominated by headlines about international trade and the tough tri-lateral negotiations involving the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Now, a new trade framework...

Mitch McConnell: Kentuckians benefitting from clout in Washington; here are some examples from 2018

Throughout 2018, I worked with my colleagues and President Trump to accomplish a great deal across Kentucky – from Paducah to Pikeville. We legalized industrial hemp, opening new doors of opportunity for farmers. We bolstered funding for our military and our veterans. And we helped protect families from the scourge of the opioid epidemic and the terrors of human trafficking. My most important responsibility...

Bill Straub: Think of all the great acts. Give big round of applause now for McConnell, Paul and Trump

In the past, we’ve had Laurel and Hardy, Burns and Allen, Abbott and Costello. Now we have McConnell and Trump. In an interview with columnist Fred Barnes, an acquaintance from the days of appearing on “Issues in the News’’ over the Voice of America, Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell, of Louisville, squealed like a four-year-old holding a double-scoop ice cream...

Bill Straub: Mitch McConnell is in an uncomfortable spot (and he did vote for Clinton’s impeachment)

Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell said a lot the other day by saying nothing. Asked by a reporter at a press briefing, “On Friday night, federal prosecutors implicated the president on two crime. Do you have any concerns about that?” McConnell, of Louisville, answered, to wit: “I don’t have any observations to make about that.” The inquiry, of course,...

President Trump’s recent visit to Kentucky caps long history of presidential visits chronicled in new book

By Wayne Onkst Special to KyForward When President Trump visited Kentucky this fall, he was adding to the long history of presidential visits to the Commonwealth. For 200 years, presidents have traveled to Kentucky for public business, using the state’s centrally located rivers, railroads and airports. Kentucky has also played an important role in national politics at various times during U.S. history,...

Bill Straub: When you don’t know anything, it is probably best to shut up and listen to those who do

Permit me to borrow a phrase that has been used consistently by Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell and any number of his colleagues on the GOP side of the aisle: I am not a scientist. Here is my curriculum vitae on the subject: I somehow managed to survive a high school chemistry class taught by Mr. George Barstow who had been a teacher since the Roosevelt Administration...

Mitch McConnell: Landmark opioids bill can save lives, get Kentucky back to work

The epidemic of opioid and substance abuse affects families in virtually every neighborhood in America. Its deadly toll hit a staggering record in Kentucky, where more than 1,500 people died from a drug overdose in 2017 alone. The only way to solve this crisis is through coordinated efforts at the local, state and federal levels. As the Senate Majority Leader, I have made responding to addiction a...

Public can now comment on Trump administration proposal to limit green card, visa applications

By Mary Kuhlman Public News Service People can now officially weigh in on a proposal by the Trump administration to punish legal permanent residents who have used certain public benefits by making it harder for them to get a green card or visa. The proposal comes despite studies that show legal permanent residents use benefits such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Medicaid...

Trump in Richmond to support Congressman Andy Barr; Joe Biden rallied for Amy McGrath Friday

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today RICHMOND, Ky. (KT) – President Donald Trump urged his supporters to re-elect U.S. Rep. Andy Barr in the November midterm elections on Saturday at a raucous campaign rally and underscored the reason why. 
“The election of Andy is a really important thing,” Trump told the crowd of 6,100 in Alumni Coliseum on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University. “It could...

Bill Straub: Certainly no witch hunt as Mueller moves right along; and a word about ‘great guy’ Art Schmidt

With the November election now less than two months away, Republicans are ratcheting up their calls for a quick and painless end to the investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into Russia’s apparent maneuvering in the 2016 presidential election that resulted in, and it hurts to say, “President’’ Donald J. Trump (good Lord in heaven). The probe, entering its 15th month,...

Bill Straub: Trump Derangement Syndrome aside, there are legitimate questions about Putin and Trump

To Sen. Rand Paul, it can all be chalked up to Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS). The Republican lawmaker from Bowling Green, famously referred to as a “wacko bird’’ by one-time presidential candidate Sen. John McCain of Arizona – a member of Paul’s own party, it should be noted – insists the vitriol that greeted President Trump’s (YIKES!) recent session with Russia strongman Vladimir...

Mitch McConnell: Visits with constituents back home help to guide Kentucky’s priorities in Washington

Whenever the Senate is not in session, I enjoy working at home in Kentucky and hearing first-hand from my constituents. During the July state work period, I again traveled across Kentucky to meet with families, veterans, workers and students. I’m proud to represent them in Washington and always appreciate spending time with them in the Commonwealth. These conversations help me – as Senate Majority...

Keven Moore: Inclusion of fire sprinkler provisions in Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will save many lives

On Dec. 22, 2017, President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The top individual tax rate dropped to 37 percent as a result of the bill. It also cut income tax rates, doubled the standard deduction and eliminated personal exemptions. For corporate, the tax rate went from 35 percent to 21 percent beginning in 2018. Like with any other bill passed in Washington, addendums are always added that...

Bill Straub: Following Tuesday’s primary election, the Republican Party now the party of Trump

WASHINGTON – There can no longer be any doubt that the Republican Party, once known as the party of Lincoln and, later, the party of Reagan, is now the party of Trump. The proof comes in Tuesday night’s primary election results. In South Carolina, state Rep. Katie Arrington toppled incumbent Rep. Mark Sanford to capture the GOP nomination for that state’s 1st Congressional District seat centered...