ELECTION: GOP rides last bus to Election Day

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Williams, Farmer, Kemper stop at Andriot’s on Tuesday

By Lisa King

This week, it was the Republicans’ turn to stump in Shelbyville, when the Williams & Farmer Bus Tour rolled to a stop Tuesday morning at WJ Andriot’s on Main Street.


With just one week until Election Day, a crowd of about 30 greeted state Sen. David Williams, the would-be governor, and outgoing Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer, the candidate for lieutenant governor, when the pair stepped off the bus, ready to talk about their come-from-behind effort against incumbent Gov. Steve Beshear and Jerry Abramson.

The mood was warm for the GOP rally, but the party moved inside the store because of chilly weather.

Jennifer Decker, Republican Party chair for Shelby County, and state Sen. Paul Hornback (R-Shelbyville) introduced Williams and Farmer, as well as John Kemper, who is running for state auditor.

“I’m glad to see we have a good turnout, and I hope you all watched the debate last night, because if you did, you know that Williams and Farmer have a vision for the future,” Hornback told the crowd. “They have ideas that will help move this state forward; they will make a good team.”

Williams told the crowd that his and Farmer’s “jobs platform” has been out there for about a month now, referring to the title of their bus tour, “Real Plan for Real Jobs.”

Williams outlined the following highlights of his platform:

§       Tax reform for individuals and businesses.

§       Legal and labor law reforms.

§       Protection of the coal industry.

§       Promoting agriculture and farm families.

§       Reforming Kentucky’s pension and unemployment insurance systems.

“We really have to do something about this, it is nine hundred and sixty million dollars right now, and it’s a job crippling situation,” he said, referring to pension fund situation.

Williams introduced his running mate then, describing Farmer as a former Clay County and University of Kentucky basketball star, who is every young man’s dream, “unless you’re a Cardinal fan.”

Farmer told the group that his vision for Kentucky was improving the job and career situation in the state.

“For me, it’s about the future of our young people,” he said. “So many of them are having to go to other cities and other states to have successful careers and raise their families. That’s not acceptable. We need to make some changes to help our young people do that right here in Kentucky.”

He added that he and Williams are pro-life, pro-coal, pro-jobs and against Obama.

“People have said that we’re behind at the polls, but I’ve been behind before in my life,” he said. “But upsets happen; I remember the LSU game, when we were down by thirty-one points at half time, and we came back to win the game. We can win this race.”

State Rep. Brad Montell (R-Shelbyville) and Shelby County Attorney Hart Megibben also made short, impromptu speeches at Williams’ request. Montell said Williams and Farmer would work for the types of initiatives that are supportive of business, and Megibben urged everyone to work for a good turnout on Election Day.

When introducing Kemper, Williams again gave Big Blue a plug.

“He [Kemper] was also a UK athlete; he played football,” he said. “I also went to UK, but I couldn’t jump or run.”

Kemper spoke briefly, mostly echoing the general trend of negativity towards the opposition that the other candidates had expressed, and finished with saying, “I pledge to you, as auditor, I will work for the taxpayers of Kentucky.”

Decker said she is glad the candidates’ tour took them through Shelbyville.

“I’m just excited to have them here, because this gives people a last chance to see them and talk to them before Election Day,” she said.


Election 2011



A comparison of the candidates, Page A5

A preview of the Secretary of State race, Page A9


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