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Hidden Website Suggests Adam Edelen Plans To Run For Kentucky Governor

Edelen Strategic Ventures

Speculation that former State Auditor Adam Edelen will run for Kentucky governor continues to grow after the back door to his gubernatorial campaign website was left open on Wednesday.

The test-version of the website included the text “Adam Edelen for Governor” and “Edelen Holland 2019” and was quickly shut down after pictures of the page began circulating on social media.

The page also included an embedded YouTube video of Hall & Oates’ hit 1977 single, “Rich Girl.”

Credit screenshot
A screenshot from Edelen’s campaign website found Wednesday. The site has since been taken down.

Edelen is a Democrat and served as auditor of public accounts from 2012 until 2016 before he lost re-election to current Republican Auditor Mike Harmon. Edelen also served as chief of staff to former Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear.

Edelen’s apparent running mate is Gill Holland, a Louisville businessman who has donated heavily to Democratic political efforts. Holland is also a board member of Louisville Public Media, which is the parent organization of WFPL News.

Neither Edelen nor Holland returned requests for comment on Wednesday.

Edelen would be the third Democrat to launch a bid for governor after Attorney General Andy Beshear and Rocky Adkins, the minority leader of the Kentucky House of Representatives.

Republican Gov. Matt Bevin has said he will run for re-election, though he still hasn’t formally filed paperwork and has dodged questions over whether Lieutenant Gov. Jenean Hampton will be on his ticket again.

The deadline to officially declare candidacy for elected offices in Kentucky is Jan 29.

Edelen hinted at a run for governor over the summer, saying that Democrats need to run against Bevin’s attempts to change the Medicaid system.

If Edelen is in fact running for governor, it would be the second time a gubernatorial candidacy has been revealed through the discovery of a test website. Andy Beshear’s gubernatorial campaign page was left open ahead of his announcement over the summer.

Ryland Barton is the Managing Editor for Collaboratives. He's covered politics and state government for NPR member stations KWBU in Waco and KUT in Austin. He has a bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago and a master's degree in journalism from the University of Texas. He grew up in Lexington.

Email Ryland at
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