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Election 2012: Adkins, Massie hope to stop in Shelby

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Adkins, Massie say 20 counties keep them moving, candidates planning to return to Shelby

By Lisa King

Fourth-congressional districts candidates have been hitting the campaign trail hard lately, and both say they plan to include Shelby County in some of those visits before Nov. 6.

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Democrat Bill Adkins, a Williamstown attorney, and Republican Thomas Massie, former Lewis County judge-executive, attended several events in Shelby while campaigning during the May Primary, and during the summer have appeared at several functions, both politically oriented as well as social events, such as the Shelbyville Horse Show.

Adkins and Massie, who are vying for the 4th District congressional seat vacated when 4-term Republican Geoff Davis resigned this summer.

This newly drawn district lies mostly in the northeastern portion of the state, and extends west to east, from Oldham County, and a portion of Jefferson County, to Greenup County and a portion of Boyd County, and north to south from Boone, Kenton and Campbell counties, to Shelby County and a portion of Spencer County.

And those 20 counties create a very large campaign area.

“It’s a pace you wouldn’t believe,” Adkins said. “I’m running from one end of the district to the other, and all between court cases. I had a really busy day in court today. I had ten cases, and I’m on my way out the door right now to speak at Northern Kentucky University.”

Massie’s itinerary had been similar to Adkins, the way Massie described it.

“Two days in a row, I have driven four hundred miles each day,” he said. “I did have a driver, with four or five events a day,

“One day I started out with breakfast in Ashland, which is as far east as you can get in the district, then I had a meeting in northern Kentucky. Then I had a meet-and-greet in a private home in Louisville, and I was asleep on the way home.”

A district of this size would make door-to-door campaigning pretty difficult, and Adkins said he doesn’t plan to do much of that, except maybe at the last moment.

“Right now, I’m just running from end to end,” he said. “Yesterday, I was in Gallatin County and Louisville, and tomorrow I’ll be in Ashland and Maysville and in Lewis County on Saturday.”

“I will be in Shelby County Sunday, at the MaxPower fundraiser.”

That 2-night event, featuring casino and bingo games to raise money to support Kentuckiana Youth Athletics sponsored by MaxPower, will conclude from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday at the Shelby Bingo Plus facility on Buck Creek Road in Simpsonville.

Adkins said the last time he visited Shelby County to campaign was Oct. 4, when he attended a candidate forum at the Stratton Center, hosted by the area NAACP.

At a Democratic fundraiser Sept. 6 on Main Street, about 50 people turned out in support of Adkins, who enjoyed a landslide victory over Greg Frank of Corinth in the primary election, garnered 71 percent of the vote in Shelby County and 70 percent statewide, compared to Frank’s 31 percent in Shelby and 29 percent statewide.

Massie was also popular at the polls among Shelby Countians in the primary, with 50 percent of the county’s Republican vote, compared to 46 percent statewide.

Massie said he wasn’t sure when his last visit in Shelby was but that he had been to numerous events and functions in the county.

“I have met with the Farm Bureau there; I’ve spoken at the paint store [W.J. Andriot] on Main Street; I went to Gallrein’s for a chamber event, and I attended the [Shelbyville] Horse Show,” he said. “I stayed for the entire horse show; I didn’t get home until one o’clock in the morning.”

Neither Adkins nor Massie attended the candidate’s forum held Monday night at the Stratton Center, co-hosted by SCOPE and The Sentinel-News.

They had both been invited, but there one and only l debate aired on Kentucky Educational Television in the same time slot, and they submitted statements that were read to the crowd.