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4th District State Representative Debate: Lynn Bechler v Jarrod Jackson


The candidates for Kentucky’s 4th District House of Representatives seat differ on the future of higher education funding in the commonwealth.

Democrat Jarrod Jackson and incumbent Republican Lynn Bechler debated for a half hour at the WKMS studios on subjects ranging from stimulating job creation, combating the state’s 18 percent jobless rate, funding the Affordable Care Act and reforming the Kentucky tax system. 

But both candidates shared different views on state budget cuts to funding post-secondary education.

Jackson says those cuts need to be dialed back to support an educated workforce.

“Education is currently fifty-two percent of the state budget, but the amount allotted to secondary-education is dwindling and I think that’s one of those areas that you can’t compromise," said Jackson. "With any government there’s unnecessary spending that needs to be toned down, secondary-education, post-secondary education I do not put that into the class of unnecessary spending. I think that’s one of the most valuable investments we can make in order to combat poverty, stimulate economic growth.”

But Bechler says the legislature needs to broaden educational opportunities in the commonwealth by focusing more on vocational and career training programs.

“We have people who are ready to go to college; we have many people who choose not to go to college," said Bechler. "I think what we need to do is look at getting our high school students career or college ready. We need to do a better job whether its vocational schools or other things. I believe competition is the best thing, and if we had junior colleges working to get people in colleges, then the cost of secondary education would go down.” 

The candidates face off November 4.

The 4th district covers all of Caldwell, Crittenden, Livington counties and part of McCracken county.

Todd Hatton hails from Paducah, Kentucky, where he got into radio under the auspices of the late, great John Stewart of WKYX while a student at Paducah Community College. He also worked at WKMS in the reel-to-reel tape days of the early 1990s before running off first to San Francisco, then Orlando in search of something to do when he grew up. He received his MFA in Creative Writing at Murray State University. He vigorously resists adulthood and watches his wife, Angela Hatton, save the world one plastic bottle at a time.
Rob Canning is a native of Murray, KY, a 2015 TV Production grad of Murray State. At MSU, he served as team captain of the Murray State Rowing Club. Rob's goal is to become a screenwriter, film director or producer and looks to the likes of Quentin Tarantino and Guy Ritchie for inspiration. He appreciates good music, mainly favoring British rock n' roll, and approves of anything with Jack White's name on it. When not studying, rowing or writing, Rob enjoys spending his free time with a book or guitar.
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