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KY Governor's race: News and notes

KY Governor's race: News and notes

by Joe Arnold


Posted on June 14, 2011 at 11:18 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jun 14 at 11:31 PM

What's in a name?

In order to be placed on the fall ballot, independent candidate Gatewood Galbraith needs to submit petitions with the signatures of 5,000 voters by August 9.  But, Galbraith tells the Courier-Journal's Tom Loftus that more than 1,000 of the people who signed petitions printed their names, rather than providing a cursive signature. 

Galbraith has asked a judge to allow the printed names.

“Some people have said, ‘Gee, you can't read my scrawl, I'm just going to go ahead and print it,'” Galbraith said in an interview Tuesday. “It's still a fixing of your name to a document with legal intent, so that should qualify as a signature. They don't teach cursive in school any more; it doesn't seem like it anyway.”

You wanna spark this, man?

Meanwhile, Galbraith - who Republicans hope plays the spoiler in drawing votes away from Democratic incumbent Steve Beshear - hopes that voters don't just regard him as the candidate who has advocated the legalization of medical marijuana.

 The Advocate-Messenger's (Danville) Todd Kleffman describes the scene at a recent fundraiser:

Gatewood Galbraith is sitting at a table beneath the pavillion at Terrapin Hill Farm with his running mate, Dea Riley, when a young man with longish hair in a tye-dye shirt stops by uninvited and pushes a pipe full of pot in Galbraith’s direction.

“You wanna spark this, man?” the dude asks.

“No thank you. I’m doing an interview right now,” Galbraith responds politely. “But I appreciate the offer.”

Old bloggers never die, they move to New York

Former Kentucky political blogger Mark Nickolas is offering his views on the governor's race to Insight Cable's Lanny Brannock.

“There really is a fracture among sort of the more business oriented Republicans and more of the social and some of the libertarians,” Nickolas said. “I think that the governor has to feel good. It’s going to help his fundraising. It’s never over, but certainly you want to head into the general with a double digit lead. Seems pretty commanding to me.”

Barbour not in the Ville, but Lexington

Much has been made of the drained resources of GOP candidate David Williams after a closer than expected primary battle.  The Republican ticket hopes to make a statement with a big fundraiser in Lexington on Thursday.  Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, who served as chairman of the Republican Governors Association last year, is the headliner.

"Gov. Barbour has been a great hands on governor, dealing with some of the toughest situations in his state’s history,” Williams said last month, “Kentucky needs a governor who shares Gov. Barbour’s commitment to conservative values. I admire his action-oriented leadership style and his willingness to take tough, principled stances. We look forward to having him in Kentucky for what is sure to be a great event.”


 The Charleston (WV) Gazette political blog spoke to Democratic Governors Association communications director Lis Smith, who says West Virginia and Kentucky are “top priorities” for the DGA this election cycle:

Smith said DGA staffers plan to work closely with (Senate President/Acting Gov. Earl Ray) Tomblin’s team and others in the state Democratic Party. She wouldn’t comment on specific campaign spending plans, but indicated that the organization plans to spend big in the Mountain State.

“We are going to be very financially supportive of efforts” to elect Tomblin,  she said. “We’ll spend every dollar that it takes.”

Democrats lost 11 governor seats to Republicans in the 2010 elections, and Smith said this year’s races in Kentucky and West Virginia could provide a glimpse of what can be expected nationally in the 2012 governor’s elections.


The Kentucky Democratic Party hopes that the Kentucky Personnel Board's review of two merit position hires in Richie Farmer's Agriculture Department will conjure images of the Ernie Fletcher administration.

 “When it comes to Republican hiring scandals, Kentucky has been down this road before," said  said Dan Logsdon, Chairman of the KDP.

Who's speaking for the governor?

Katie Dailinger has stepped down - at least for now - as Governor Steve Beshear's Director of Communications and Policy to join the Beshear-Abramson campaign as Communications Director.  Kerri Richardson, currently serving as Spokesperson and Deputy Communications for the Office of the Governor, will assume the role of Director of Communications.

Beshear speaks for himself

As Williams works to restock his campaign coffers, Governor Steve Beshear is the only candidate airing campaign commercials.

His second ad, "Leading by Example," reasserts Beshear's standard stump speech, that he has spared Kentucky painful budget cuts during a recession while finding ways to save money.

"Just like Kentucky families have had to dig deep and make sacrifices to balance their budgets, I’ve done the same thing with state government. I just try to lead by example, like the ad says."