Adam Edelen

Ryland Barton

After a nasty primary election, Democratic candidate for governor Andy Beshear campaigned with his former rival Adam Edelen at an event in Louisville on Wednesday.

Beshear, Kentucky’s attorney general, is trying to unseat Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, who has been dogged by a low-approval rating.

Edelen came in third during this year’s Democratic primary and previously attacked Beshear for being a “talking point politician” and representing the Boy Scouts of America in a sex abuse case while working for a private law firm.


With one week until the primary election, Kentucky’s Democratic candidates for governor made their pitches for why they should be their party’s nominee during a debate on KET Monday night.

It’s the third televised event during this year’s race to see who will take on the winner of the Republican primary, which includes incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin and three Republican challengers. Democrats will participate in two more televised forums this week.

All three Democratic candidates voiced support for increasing state revenue to provide more money for state programs like public education, Medicaid and the state worker pension system, but candidates differed on how they would do it.

flickr/Theresa Thompson

A record number of Kentucky residents are registered to vote in the May 21 primary election. 

The Kentucky Secretary of State’s office reports that 3,421,796 Kentuckians are registered to vote in the upcoming primary.

That’s 18,891 more registered voters than in the General Election  in 2018.

Looking at the breakdown by political party, Democratic voters represent about 49 percent of the electorate, with about 1,684,200 voters.

J. Tyler Franklin

Adam Edelen is doing something most Democrats running for statewide office in Kentucky have avoided: running as a progressive. He wants Kentucky to invest in renewable energy, decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana and he supports abortion rights.

Edelen is one of four Democrats running for governor this year. He’s a businessman from Lexington and previously served as state auditor, before he lost reelection in 2015.

After that, Edelen established Edelen Strategic Ventures, a consulting firm where he has helped develop a solar power project in Pike County on top of a former coal mine.

Lisa Autry

Democrat Adam Edelen says he’s running for governor to bring 21st century leadership to Kentucky. 

The solar energy entrepreneur and former state auditor says the commonwealth isn’t putting pillars in place that support modern economic development. 

In a speech to the Bowling Green Noon Rotary Club on Wednesday, Edelen said the state hasn't prepared enough for the digital age.

“Next time you’re outside of Bowling Green proper and you find yourself at a McDonald’s between 4:00 and 6:00 in the evening, it will be chock full of people not just there to buy hamburgers and milkshakes, but because the most reliable provider of wi-fi in Kentucky is a McDonald’s," Edelen stated.


Kentucky’s Democratic candidates for governor participated in the first televised debate of the campaign season Wednesday night. They argued over issues like abortion, how to generate more revenue for the state and who has the best chance to beat incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin.

Attorney General Andy Beshear, the son of former Gov. Steve Beshear, is trying to maintain his front-runner status in the race while former auditor Adam Edelen and longtime state Rep. Rocky Adkins search for a path to victory.

Ryland Barton

With about a month to go before Kentucky’s primary elections, all three major Democratic candidates for governor appeared together on stage for the first time on Thursday.

During a forum held by Louisville’s Rotary Club, candidates differed only slightly in their stances on a wide range of issues including preserving Kentucky’s Medicaid expansion, shoring up public education and allowing casino gambling to generate revenue for the state’s ailing pension systems.

Jacob Ryan

Democrat Adam Edelen said that if he is elected governor of Kentucky, he’ll push to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.

Edelen said Kentucky’s marijuana laws have put strains on families and taxpayers and are disproportionately used against minorities.

In a news conference Monday, Edelen called for eliminating criminal penalties for possessing less than a half-ounce of marijuana.

Ryland Barton

There was no need for Democrat Adam Edelen to share the spotlight at the Black Votes Matter forum in Louisville Thursday because none of the other major candidates for governor showed up.

The event was hosted by Simmons College, a historically black college, and questions focused on how to promote wealth and resources in black communities, reform the criminal justice system and improve public education.

Edelen Strategic Ventures

One of Kentucky’s Democratic candidates for governor will lay out his vision for the state before an audience in Bowling Green on Friday evening. 

Adam Edelen is holding a public forum to talk about his campaign platform that includes making the bluegrass state competitive in a modern economy.

"We've got to get broadband to every community in Kentucky," Edelen told WKU Public Radio. "We got to embrace renewable energy as part of our energy portfolio in order to be attractive to recruiting and developing new companies in Kentucky."

Jacob Ryan

Former State Auditor Adam Edelen is the third Democrat to launch a bid for Kentucky governor.

During an announcement in Lexington, Edelen said as governor he would focus on fixing the state’s public education system, protecting health coverage and generating new revenue for the state’s cash-strapped budget.

Edelen depicted himself as a new direction for Kentucky Democrats, saying that he is an alternative to “the stale scent of incrementalism and nostalgia.”

Edelen Files Paperwork to Raise Money for Governor's Race

Jan 3, 2019
Edelen Strategic Ventures

A former Kentucky auditor has filed paperwork to raise money for the 2019 governor's race.

Adam Edelen filed a letter of intent with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance on Thursday. Edelen has not officially filed as a candidate, but Thursday's filing is an indication he will run for governor. Edelen did not return a phone call seeking comment.

Edelen was elected state auditor in 2011. He ran for re-election in 2015 but lost to Republican Mike Harmon.

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.”

Edelen And Jones’ Political Project Seeks New Ideas, Leaders

Aug 17, 2016
J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky’s former state auditor and the host of the state’s most popular sports talk radio show have launched a new nonprofit political organization they say is focused more on generating ideas than electing people to office.

Former Auditor Adam Edelen and Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones formally launched the New Kentucky Project on Tuesday.

The group aims to have chapters in all 120 counties governed by an executive committee. Members will pay $20 annual dues, or $10 for college students. It will focus on education, health care, modernizing the state’s economy and other hot-button political issues in Kentucky.

The group signals the return of Edelen, the former state auditor who was preparing a run for the U.S. Senate before he lost re-election to former Republican state Rep. Mike Harmon.

And it is the first political work for Jones, whose show has become a must-stop for candidates seeking statewide office.

Kentucky LRC

A Louisville lawmaker says she is crafting legislation that would help curb the state’s backlog of untested rape kits and reform the system of reporting the kits.

Sen. Denise Harper-Angel, a Democrat from Louisville, introduced the bill that required state Auditor Adam Edelen to tally up the total number of untested rape kits in the state. Edelen released a report Monday that revealed more than 3,000 are sitting untested in Kentucky’s state and local law enforcement offices.

The report partly blames the problem on a lack of funding for the Kentucky State Police Forensics Lab, which conducts the DNA testing of kits.

Harper-Angel said she’s working on legislation to ensure the swift and proper handling of the kits.

“I’m going to fight hard for additional funding for KSP and the crime lab,” said Harper-Angel, who sits on the Senate’s appropriations committee. “I’m going to rely on many of the recommendations in the report.”

Edelen’s report detailed local law enforcement agencies routinely failing to send along rape kits to the state forensics lab. In the report, he proposed requiring local law enforcement agencies to submit rape kits within 10 days of receiving them. He also recommended requiring the state forensics lab to test the kits within 90 days.