Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Democrats debate...and Henry shows up...

The Democratic candidates for Governor had another debate last night and Steve Henry actually showed up for a change. Ryan Alessi and John Stamper have the article for the Herald-Leader. I think it's pretty clear that State Treasurer Jonathan Miller gets it.
State Treasurer Jonathan Miller pulled out the one-liner of the night in his closing statement, setting it up by saying that he took issue with Fletcher's claims of broad accomplishments over the last four years.

"That's hogwash. We know this has been a trying time for the state. When I hear my opponents trying to reinvent their careers ... I feel that's just another version of Fletcher light," he said. "So you can have this six-pack of Fletcher light or you can have Miller genuine."[...]

Miller also attempted to zing Lunsford by questioning his plan to launch an efficiency audit of state government to help pay for programs. Miller cited proposed efficiencies in Rhode Island that included cutting back services for foster children.

"We can't afford that kind of efficiency," he said. "That's a Fletcher-light approach."

After the debate, Lunsford acknowledged that he became the target.

"I think they're probably reading the polls," he said.
Here's the article from the C-J.
"Ernie Fletcher made a mockery, a mockery of our merit system," said state Treasurer Jonathan Miller.

The largely civil tone that the candidates took toward one another reflected the campaign so far. All have signed a pledge not to resort to negative personal attacks.

Moreover, in a big field with no clear leader -- and the likelihood that the top two candidates will have to face one another in a runoff election if no one gets 40 percent of the vote -- negative campaigning could backfire by damaging the attacking candidate's chances of making the runoff.[...]

All seven candidates said that, if elected, they are prepared to deal with the strong leadership in the Senate of President David Williams, R-Burkesville.

Miller said he stood up to Williams and the Senate in opposing a move to take $14 million from a prepaid tuition program that Miller championed. While he said he would work with Senate Republicans, he added, "Sometimes a governor needs to stand strong."

But this issue sparked a lively exchange between Richards and Beshear.

Richards insisted that the House Democrats passed most of their agenda in the past two years as Williams led the Senate. He said House initiatives that became law this year included an increase in the minimum wage and bills to make the workplace safer for both coal miners and social workers.

Said Beshear, "David Williams deals from a position of power. But when Steve Beshear is governor, the governor's office is going to be more powerful than the president of the Senate or the speaker of the House." When cooperation isn't working, he said, a governor must sometimes approach opponents with "a kick in the rump."

Richards replied, "It's been a long time since Mr. Beshear was in the legislature."

Richards said he was a member of the House at a time when the legislature won its independence from controlling governors and that governors now must work with legislative leaders rather than "kick butt."

The candidates agreed that they don't favor tolls on the Ohio River bridges planned for Jefferson County and in Northern Kentucky. But Galbraith said he would support raising the state gasoline tax by 5 cents a gallon to pay for road improvements that would improve highway safety and boost economic development.
We should know soon about the status of a special session for the General Assembly. Here's a reminder that this year was the short session.

Has Gov. Paul Patton endorsed anyone yet? I know that Bruce Lunsford is, surprisingly, backed by former Gov. Julian Carroll. Former Gov. Brereton Jones has announced his endorsement of former Lt. Governor Steve Beshear.
“I think that not only can they win, but they can make the kind of history that will make us all proud,” Jones said of Beshear and his lieutenant governor running mate, state Sen. Dan Mongiardo of Hazard.

Beshear supports legalization of casino gambling as a way to generate revenue for state programs.

Jones, who was governor from 1991-95, is the second former governor to endorse one of the seven candidates in the May 22 Democratic primary. State Sen. Julian Carroll of Frankfort, who was governor from 1974-79, previously endorsed millionaire Louisville businessman Bruce Lunsford.

Beshear said during a press conference in Frankfort that his father always told him that individuals are judged by the company they keep.
Jonathan Miller recieved more endorsements today.
Eighteen Louisville leaders, including Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney David Stengel and two former members of Congress, endorsed Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jonathan Miller this afternoon.[...]

In addition to Stengel, the endorsements came from Frank Burke Jr., a former congressman and mayor of Louisville; Mike Ward, a former congressman and state representative; Christina Lee Brown, a civic leader; Owsley Brown II, a business leader; Rick Blackwell, president of the Louisville Metro Council; Dan Johnson, Bob Henderson, Madonna Flood, George Unseld, Jim King, Mary Woolridge and Vicky Aubrey Welch, all members of the Metro Council; David Karem, a former state senator and current head of the Waterfront Development Corp.; J. Bruce Miller and Mike Conliffe, former Jefferson County attorneys; Bob Hughes, former state representative and World War II veteran; and Joe Greene, a former Jefferson County sheriff.
I'm pleased to see that my fellow Louisvillians back the Miller-Maze ticket.

Pardon the pun, but I can't bee-lieve this.

Shame on these British journalists. If it keeps up, don't expect me to be quoting any British papers when it comes to news dealing with Eretz Yisrael. On that note, here's this piece of news dealing with British teachers.
Timesonline reported Monday that the group wrote to Education Secretary Alan Johnson regarding a report put out by his office, "Teaching Emotive and Controversial History."

The Center wrote that it was "horrified" to read that British schools were reluctant to educate students about the Holocaust because teachers did not want to challenge "contentious or charged versions of history" taught to children at home -- an apparent reference to an unwillingness by teachers to confront Holocaust denial in the British Muslim community," the Times wrote.

"Teachers' mistreatment or exclusion of the Holocaust is an offense to the memory of its 6 million victims and to the British soldiers who liberated the Nazi death camps," Shimon Samuels, the center's international relations director, wrote to Johnson on Monday in a letter coinciding with Yom Hashoah.

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