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Democratic Candidates Make Final Election Pitches In West Ky.

Cory Sharber

Democratic candidates for statewide office including gubernatorial candidate Attorney General Andy Beshear finished a campaign bus tour the day before Election Day, with several stops throughout west Kentucky.

Beshear spoke in front of dozens of supporters Monday morning in downtown Murray, saying the future of public education and rural hospitals are at stake when voters go to the polls.


“The future of working families is on the line because the “haves” and the “have-nots” will become the “have-mores” and “never-wills” under another four years of Matt Bevin,” Beshear said. 


Beshear also said he isn’t concerned about the prospect of a potential boost his opponent, Republican Governor Matt Bevin, might receive from President Donald Trump stumping for Bevin in Lexington. Beshear said Bevin is using Trump to distract from the governor's record.


“He is having to hide behind the President and make this race about anything other than how he’s performed as governor,” Beshear said. “But I believe that our people know this race isn’t about what’s going on in the White House. It’s about what’s going on in their house.”


Beshear said Democrats will have a “big win” if Kentuckians “vote their values” of supporting institutions like public education. In a phone call Monday morning, Republican Governor Matt Bevin also said people should vote their values. But Bevin said he believes Kentuckians align more with his agenda.


“I would encourage western Kentuckians and all Kentuckians to think about what are your values. Do you support human life? If you do, vote those values,” Bevin said. “Do you support job creation and economic growth throughout the Commonwealth? If you do, vote those values.”


Bevin said Trump’s support in Lexington reflects the values that Kentuckians will vote for on Tuesday.


The Democratic candidates also made a final stop Monday afternoon in downtown Hopkinsville to address potential voters.


Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes expects about 31 percent of voters to turn out on Tuesday, but Secretary of State candidate Heather French Henry said she’s hoping to see higher numbers.


Credit Cory Sharber / WKMS
Michael Bowman, Robert Conway and Heather French Henry speaking to reporters in Hopkinsville, Ky. on November 4.

“I do think that this bus tour and all of the candidates criss-crossing the state have energized people in a way,” Henry said. “We’re seeing unions come out. We’re seeing teachers come out by the numbers, have some of them traveling on the bus with us, so hopefully with that energized base, we’re going to see higher numbers for this general election.”


State Treasurer candidate Michael Bowman said Kentucky needs to have a stronger source of revenue to aid the family pension funds and shore up the public education system.


“The legalization of marijuana is a piece of my platform,” Bowman said. “We see a state like Colorado that generates a billion dollars in revenue over the course of five years. That’s money that we can send to do good work for the people of Kentucky.”


Commissioner of Agriculture candidate Robert Conway said there are people that are going to lose everything over the fledgling hemp program.


“Right now, the Commissioner of Agriculture gets to choose who grows it and how much,” Conway said. “That’s not fair. That’s not fair at all. There’s only a thousand farms right now of the 75,000 farms left in Kentucky that’s actually growing hemp. My proposal is every farm in the state of Kentucky that’s a licensed farm gets to grow a hemp base.”


Auditor candidate Sheri Donahue said the first thing she will do if she’s elected is look at the pension system and improve cybersecurity for all county governments.



Credit Cory Sharber / WKMS
Sheri Donahue speaking to the media in Hopkinsville, Ky. on November 4.

“The auditor’s office is doing nothing,” Donahue said. “120 counties and we are not doing anything to protect people’s information or tax dollars and we’re going to put cybersecurity at the county level for sure.”


Election Day is Tuesday. Polls are open throughout the Commonwealth from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. local time.


"Liam Niemeyer is a reporter for the Ohio Valley Resource covering agriculture and infrastructure in Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia and also serves Assistant News Director at WKMS. He has reported for public radio stations across the country from Appalachia to Alaska, most recently as a reporter for WOUB Public Media in Athens, Ohio. He is a recent alumnus of Ohio University and enjoys playing tenor saxophone in various jazz groups."
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