The new leader of the Kentucky Democratic Party says the “Republican experiment” has failed.
In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Chairman Ben Self accuses the GOP of waging a war on the middle class by creating right-to-work and prevailing wage laws.
He also thinks sexual harassment allegations looming over Republicans and a pension proposal rejected by many public employees jeopardizes some House GOP members in next year’s elections.
Republicans gained control of the Kentucky House last year for the first time since 1921, but Self believes Democrats have a real opportunity to take back the chamber.
Some former state representatives, including Brent Yonts of Greenville, are working to reclaim the seats they lost in 2016. Self says he likes his party’s chances next year.
"We have several legislators that lost by just a few hundred votes, maybe less than 200 votes in some cases," Self commented. "I think it's really clear that those seats will not go Republican again."
Kentucky Republican Party Communications Director Tres Watson responded with this statement:
"While I congratulate Mr. Self on his election, I hope he'll spend some time studying the history of our state and learn how we found ourselves with the problems we face: a century of Democratic mismanagement. Republicans in Frankfort are working hard everyday to correct the errors of Democrats in the past and have been rewarded with the confidence of the voters at the ballot box, a trend I don't see changing anytime soon."
All 100 members of the state House are up for re-election next year and seats in even districts are open for contest in the Senate. The candidate filing period for the 2018 election cycle is open through January 30th of next year.