Well, in case you missed it, the elections are over…for now. Voter turnout was a low 15 percent of the state’s registered voters. One Democrat said she voted for the ones who didn’t bother her with phone calls while another Democrat told me, “there’s nothing to vote for”. She didn’t like anything see saw or heard about any of the candidates. Her only regret was that there wasn’t a “none of above” on the ballot. If there was, there would be a lot of embarrassed politicians suddenly out of office.
As for my predictions, it looks like I was pretty right on. It looks like I missed just a couple. For State Treasurer, I said Republican Lonnie Napier and Mike Weaver on the Democratic side would win. Well, Melinda Wheeler, who wants to do away with the office, won on the GOP side while Todd Hollenbach, son of the former Jefferson County Judge Executive during the forced bussing episode of 1975, won for the Democrats.
For Agriculture Commissioner, Richie Farmer (R) won as I thought he would, while my other pick, David Neville lost to David Williams, a current Democrat. Williams is a sometime Republican and sometime Democratic candidate. Looks like Democratic suits him well this time! Congratulations to both Todd Hollenbach and David Williams on their win.
If Jody Richards is serious about Kentucky’s best interest, he should forget about running for Governor or any other office than the one he currently has. He needs to stay right where he’s at as Speaker of the House. Sometimes one can do more good by not having the top job.
My thanks to John Y Brown III for being a good sport. He did a great job as Secretary of State. I think if John has higher aspirations, he should look to either a State Senate or State Representative seat, and then come back for another run. I’ve heard rumors that John and Jack Conway had considered a possible at the Governor’s Mansion. I think that would make a formable team. You listening John?
Gatewood Galbraith has made some four attempts for Governor. Gatewood, you’re always a hoot, but it just ain’t gonna happen pal. Have you ever considered running for Agriculture Commissioner? If not, you should. You’re a basically country lawyer. You know about the problems of farmers and obstacles they face. This is a rural state. You could do a lot there. Go for it!
Jeff Hoover. What can I say? You’re tough. You’re experienced. You’re intelligent. And I like that. But like Jody, you may be at your best right where you are. Besides being a thorn in Larry Clark’s side (I like that too), you might consider making it your mission to bring talented people interested in public service into the Republican Party, and even helping them run for office.
Billy Harper. You’re a heck of a guy. I admire your convections. I especially admire your willingness to back up your convections with your own money. It’s rare in politics these days that someone will “walk the talk”. I’d like to see you in a position where you could ride roughshod over the financial abuses and mismanagement in Frankfort. I bet you’d clean house! Like my advice to Jeff, I think you can offer much to people aspiring to public service from the Republican side of the fence. You’d make a terrific “Dutch Uncle”!
Finally, Anne Northup. You had just lost your seat to John Yarmuth. Perhaps you felt compelled to run. You’ve done it for so long. Maybe it was outside pressure, but I suspect it may have been the sting of defeat and the need to prove yourself again. You did what you felt needed to be done. You’ve been a State Representative. You’ve been a Congresswoman. You did well. You really did. Now, take some time off for yourself. You’ve earned it.
Congratulations to all the victors and thank you to all those who time out of the busy lives to run for public office. I’ve been there and done that. It isn’t easy.