Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway’s campaign for governor received endorsements Thursday from three leading state Democrats.
Conway picked up the support of former U.S. Sen. Wendell Ford, former State Auditor Crit Luallen and current U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, the campaign announced.
“I am humbled to receive the endorsements of three people who have been so dedicated to standing up for Kentuckians and fighting for the working men and women of our Commonwealth,” Conway said in a news release.
A Louisville native, Conway is the first and only Democrat to officially jump in primary race, and he chose House Democratic Caucus Chair Rep. Sannie Overly, D-Paris, to be his running mate. The endorsements show Conway is fortifying his high name recognition and fundraising prowess with the backing of popular Democratic officials.
“He and Sannie are committed to expanding early childhood education and making college accessible to more Kentuckians, which are critical to developing a strong economy and ensuring our workforce is ready for the jobs of the future,” said Yarmuth, who represents Louisville and is the only Democrat in Kentucky’s federal delegation.
The endorsement is the latest bit of good news for Conway. State Auditor Adam Edelen, a potential primary rival, announced recently that he would not seeking the governor’s office in 2015.
In an interview with The Courier-Journal’s Joe Gerth, former lieutenant governor Dan Mongiardo, said he was “leaning towards running.” Other rumored contenders are Lexington banker Luther Deaton and House Speaker Greg Stumbo of Prestonsburg.
Luallen was once a rumored candidate but declined to make a bid—like Edelen, she cited family reasons. She cited her close working and personal relationship with Conway as the reason for backing his candidacy.
“Jack Conway has the intellect, the integrity, and the vision to be one of the best governors the state has seen,” she said in a statement. “He and I worked side by side in the governor’s office for six years, and I know he has the strength and skills to build a strong future for Kentucky.”
On the Republican, former Louisville mayoral candidate Hal Heiner announced he was running for governor earlier this year.