Ed Whitfield Endorses Former Field Director in 1st District Congress Race
Kentucky's 1st District Congressman Ed Whitfield has endorsed his longtime field director Michael Pape to succeed him next year.
Whitfield announced last month he would not seek a 12th term in Washington.
Earlier this week, Whitfield spoke glowingly of Pape, but stopped short of an endorsement, saying it was premature to announce his official support.
"Mike Pape has been with me 20 years, going on 21, and he's done everything I've ever asked him to do," said Whitfield. "He's bent over backwards to help constituents. He knows the issues. He knows the people of the 1st district."
Whitfield said he had been thinking about stepping away from politics for some time and almost didn’t run in 2014. He says he’s frustrated with Congress failing to pass appropriations bills.
“It’s almost like Groundhog Day in Congress now," Whitfield said in a previous interview. "Every single year we find ourselves at the end of the year not having completed a budget, not having passed these appropriations bills and we always have to have a continuing resolution to keep the government operating.”
Whitfield endorses Pape over other Republican primary opponents who already announced, Agriculture Commissioner James Comer and Hickman County Attorney Jason Batts. Comer ran unsuccessfully in the Republican gubernatorial primary this year, losing by a razor thin margin to Matt Bevin.