2019 election

Kyeland Jackson

Kentucky’s new Republican Attorney General Daniel Cameron has asked the FBI to investigate controversial pardons issued by former Gov. Matt Bevin at the end of his term.

Bevin issued pardons and commutations to more than 650 people during his final weeks in office. Most of those actions were fairly routine — low-level drug offenders who had turned their lives around or cases widely thought to be miscarriages of justice.

But some of the pardons drew controversy, especially the pardon of a Kenton County man convicted of child rape and that of a Knox County man convicted of murder whose family later held a fundraiser for Bevin.

 


Kyeland Jackson

Former Gov. Matt Bevin defended his last-minute pardon of a man convicted of repeatedly raping a nine-year-old during a radio interview on Thursday.

Bevin claimed that there was no physical evidence of the victim’s abuse because her hymen was still intact, echoing a myth that examining the small vaginal tissue can prove sexual activity, including rape.

On his last day in office, Bevin pardoned Micah Schoettle of Kenton County for rape, sodomy, incest and other offenses after serving 19 months of a 23-year sentence.

 


Kyeland Jackson

Daniel Cameron has been sworn in as Kentucky’s next attorney general. He is the first Republican to hold the office since 1948 and the first African American elected on his own ticket to statewide office.

Cameron was supposed to take office on January 6, but started early after newly-elected Gov. Andy Beshear appointed him to fill a vacancy in the office. Beshear, a Democrat, was the previous attorney general and was inaugurated as Kentucky’s 63rd governor on December 10.


Becca Schimmel

Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jenean Hampton managed to stay relatively out of the spotlight until the final year of Republican Governor Matt Bevin's administration.

In January, eyes turned toward her once Bevin filed to run for reelection without her on his ticket, and without explanation for several months.

In an interview with WKU Public Radio, Hampton discussed that moment and several other lessons from her time in office.


U.S. Air Force photo illustration

In his inaugural address Tuesday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear addressed two of the core issues he campaigned on: health care insurance and the cost of drugs.

“These are our brothers and our sisters; after the expansion, these neighbors could go see a doctor without the fear of bankruptcy. And the expansion ensured that almost all of Kentucky’s children had access to health care,” Beshear said. “I will honor and strengthen our commitment to these families.”

Beshear’s father, former Gov. Steve Beshear, expanded Medicaid in 2014 to adults without children and to people making up to 138 percent of the poverty limit, or about 400,000 people.

Andy Beshear Sworn In as Kentucky’s 63rd Governor

Dec 10, 2019
Jacob Ryan

Kentucky has a new governor.

Calling on the state to set a national example of casting aside political divisions, Democrat Andy Beshear was sworn in just after midnight Tuesday in the Governor’s Mansion. Beshear defeated Republican Matt Bevin in a close election last month; after a recanvass of the vote totals revealed only one additional vote, Bevin conceded.

Bevin received a long ovation on Monday from administration employees who lined a Capitol hallway as the outgoing governor walked to his office. They all gathered in the Rotunda, where Bevin said they had set a new standard for how government should operate in his single term.

At the start of President Trump's term, Republicans had solidified control in Washington and their hold on state governments across the country, with 33 GOP governors in power. Democrats were at their lowest numbers in nearly a century — down to just 16 Democratic governors and having control of only 13 state legislatures.

Ryland Barton

A Democratic state lawmaker from Warren County will have an insider’s view when Governor-Elect Andy Beshear takes the oath of office in a private ceremony early Tuesday morning.   

Representative Patti Minter will attend the formal swearing-in at 12:01 a.m.  A public swearing-in ceremony will take place on the Capitol steps Tuesday afternoon at 2:00 p.m. 

Minter is one of the co-chairs of the inaugural committee and says all the festivities will emphasize unity.

J. Tyler Franklin

Andy Beshear will be sworn in as Kentucky’s 63rd governor on Tuesday, five weeks after he defeated incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin by a little more than 5,000 votes.

Beshear’s Inauguration Day will be full of traditional pomp and circumstance that has developed since Kentucky’s first governor Isaac Shelby took office in 1792. And most of the festivities will be open to the public — a departure from some previous inaugurations.

Bevin will leave office at midnight on December 10th and Beshear will be officially sworn in during a private ceremony at 12:01 a.m. at the Governor’s Mansion.

J. Tyler Franklin

Outgoing Gov. Matt Bevin claimed he lost his reelection because Democrats “harvested votes in urban areas.”

Gov.-elect Andy Beshear named some of his cabinet secretaries. And education commissioner Wayne Lewis defended himself as his job might be in jeopardy in the new administration.

Jonese Franklin from member station WFPL talked to Capitol reporter Ryland Barton for this week’s edition of Kentucky Politics Distilled.


Kyeland Jackson

During a series of interviews on talk radio shows Wednesday morning, outgoing Republican Gov. Matt Bevin said that he lost his race for reelection because the Democratic Party “harvested votes in urban communities.”

Bevin lost to Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear last month by a little more than 5,000 votes.

During an interview on 55KRC in Cincinnati, Bevin said that the election was a “surprise” that defies logic.

 


Becca Schimmel

With a little more than a week until his inauguration, on Monday Gov.-elect Andy Beshear appointed five more officials to help run his incoming administration.

Beshear announced two of his eleven cabinet secretaries on Monday: former Lexington Mayor Jim Gray will serve as Transportation Cabinet secretary and Lt. Gov.-elect Jacqueline Coleman will be the next secretary of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

Beshear said that his picks would help set a “constructive and collaborative tone” in Frankfort as Kentucky returns to divided government.

 


Ryland Barton

Calling it “a time for all Kentuckians to come together on one team,” Gov.-elect Andy Beshear announced details of his December 10 inauguration.

Inauguration Day festivities are open to the public and include a breakfast, parade, swearing-in ceremony and two inaugural balls that last until midnight.

The governor-elect and first lady Britainy Beshear announced the events during a news conference at the state capitol on Tuesday.


Kyeland Jackson

Incoming Secretary of State Michael Adams says he wants to “clean” Kentucky’s voter rolls and get the legislature to pass a voter ID law before next year’s election season.

The moves by Kentucky’s incoming chief election officer would have significant implications for next year’s political races, when Kentuckians will vote for contests in the U.S. Senate, Congress, all 100 seats in the state House of Representatives and half of the 38-member state Senate.

Adams, a Republican, made the comments before the legislature’s Interim Joint Committee on State Government as he outlined his priorities for the next four years.


J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky Gov.-elect Andy Beshear’s transition team will help craft his administration, and he’s stacked it with well-connected bureaucrats, legislators and longtime supporters of the Beshear family’s political campaigns.

Transition team members donated at least $358,000 to Beshear since his run for attorney general in 2015, according to state campaign finance records. About 80 percent of the 163 team members have donated to Beshear, either in this race against incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin or his 2015 campaign. At least 16 currently work for Andy Beshear as employees of the Office of the Attorney General.

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