Matt Bevin

Kentucky Governor Outlines Support for Medical Marijuana

Feb 12, 2019
J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky's Republican governor says he would be happy to sign a bill to make marijuana legal for medical purposes.

Matt Bevin told a community forum in Stanford on Tuesday his teenage nephew died after battling cancer. He said his nephew suffered near the end of his life, suggesting medical marijuana can provide relief to people experiencing similar pain.

Bevin said his support for a bill legalizing medical marijuana would depend on how the bill is written, adding he would be opposed to a bill written solely to raise money for the state's general fund.

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Gov. Matt Bevin spent much of his fourth State of the Commonwealth Address praising the Republican-led legislature for passing measures like so-called “right-to-work” legislation, anti-abortion policies and attempting to make changes to state worker pension benefits.

The appreciative tone comes a little more than a month after Bevin chided the General Assembly — which has more than three-fifths majority in each chamber — for quickly ending a specially-called legislative session without passing an overhaul of the pension systems.

J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear issued an opinion Thursday that said an emergency regulation put in place by Governor Matt Bevin’s administration earlier this year violates the law.

The regulation restricted access to all state-owned facilities and grounds, including the state capitol building in Frankfort.  One provision in the regulation said that any group wanting to protest at the capitol would have to make such a request at least ten days in advance.

Ryland Barton

Gov. Matt Bevin met with members of the Kentucky Poor People’s campaign after the group rallied outside his office for nearly an hour on Tuesday.

The Poor People’s Campaign was protesting an emergency regulation signed by Bevin that limits visitors’ access to the Capitol.

But in the 20 minute meeting with Bevin, the group’s leaders elevated issues like school shootings, health care and voting rights for people who have felony records.

Steve Pavey, Hope In Focus

The Kentucky Poor People’s Campaign is returning to the state capitol Tuesday to protest a new emergency regulation enacted by Governor Matt Bevin.

The new rules require those wanting to assemble at a state building to submit an application ten days in advance of the event. Last summer the group held a series of statehouse protests in Frankfort and 40 other state capitals.

Reverend Megan Huston, a pastor of First Christian Church in Bowling Green, participated in those protests last year and will be in Frankfort for the event Tuesday.

State Officials Delay Start Of Some New Medicaid Rules

Feb 1, 2019
feverpitched, 123rf Stock Photo

Kentucky officials are delaying the start of some new Medicaid rules, including a requirement that some enrollees work or volunteer in order to maintain coverage.

In a news release Thursday, the Cabinet for Health and Family Services said Kentuckians with Medicaid coverage won’t have to start working or volunteering for 80 hours a month to keep their insurance until at least July 1. 

The new rule, called the “community engagement” requirement by the state, was originally supposed to start in July 2018, but a federal judge blocked the rule saying the federal government had not legally approved the change. The Trump administration re-approved changes in November.

Ryland Barton

The court battle continues over who has to pay attorney’s fees for gay couples who sued Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis for refusing to issue marriage licenses to them.

Davis refused to issue marriage licenses in the wake of the landmark Supreme Court ruling in 2015 that legalized same-sex marriage — she spent five days in jail as a result.

On Thursday, a three-judge panel on the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments in two cases — one over who is responsible for the nearly $225,000 in legal fees and the other over whether Davis is immune from paying the bill herself.

Gov. Bevin, Kentucky Clerk At Odds Over Attorneys’ Fees

Jan 31, 2019
J. Tyler Franklin

As a candidate for governor in 2015, Matt Bevin said he “absolutely supported” a Kentucky county clerk who stopped issuing marriage licenses because of her opposition to gay marriage.

But four years later, after a court ordered Kentucky taxpayers to pay more than $222,000 in legal fees for the gay and straight couples who sued, outside lawyers for now Gov. Bevin say former Rowan County clerk Kim Davis broke the law and taxpayers “should not have to collectively bear the financial responsibility for Davis’ intransigence.”

J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin has announced that his running mate during his re-election campaign this year will be Ralph Alvarado, a state senator and physician from Winchester.

The announcement came just four days before the deadline to run for office, January 29, and means that current Lt. Governor Jenean Hampton will not be on a ticket with Bevin again.

J. Tyler Franklin

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin said he hoped to avoid weighing in on the confrontation between students at Covington Catholic High School and activists in Washington D.C, but took to Twitter on Tuesday to criticize “liberals” who were upset by the controversy.

Over the weekend, a video surfaced showing a group of Covington Catholic students in “Make America Great Again” hats jeering, chanting and laughing at Native American activist Nathan Phillips, who calmly beat a drum and sang a prayer.

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A federal judge is delaying a lawsuit seeking to overturn Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin’s Medicaid changes. Judge James Boasberg granted the Department of Justice one additional week to respond to the suit because of the government shutdown.

Lawyers for the federal government are on furlough and therefore have limitations on what cases they can spend time on, according to the DOJ’s request. The DOJ originally asked for a stay in the case until the shutdown ends. 

J. Tyler Franklin

Attorney General Andy Beshear’s office is reviewing a new emergency regulation recently enacted by Governor Matt Bevin impacting public access to state buildings and facilities. The new rules require those wanting to assemble at a state building to submit an application ten days in advance of the event.

“And that could be potentially problematic because if you take an example of last year when there were more or less spontaneous reaction to and demonstration against the pension reform measure that seemingly wouldn’t pass muster under the new administrative regulation,” said Michael Abate, a Louisville based attorney with experience in media and constitutional law.


LRC Public Information

A new state lawmaker from eastern Kentucky has become the first Republican to formally launch a campaign for governor as speculation continues over whether Gov. Matt Bevin will run for re-election.

In an announcement Tuesday morning, Rep. Robert Goforth of East Bernstadt criticized Bevin’s character and stance on issues.

“I’m not a New England transplant using the people of Kentucky to feed my ego or audition for a job in Washington D.C.,” Goforth said. “Rather, I empathize with millions of my fellow Kentuckians. I understand and I respect you because I am you.”

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 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.”

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