Politics
10:36 am
Tue July 3, 2012

Paul: Obamacare Debate Will Continue

Comparing the debate to the infamous Dred Scott case, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., says the Supreme Court's ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act isn't the final word.

In a brief editorial, Paul also addresses criticisms for his earlier dismissal of the high court's powers to declare what is constitutional. He also mentions the Plessy v. Ferguson decision that made racial separation legal in the U.S. under Jim Crow as an example of the high court being wrong about what is constitutional.

From USA Today:

While it is clear to anyone who was awake in high school civics class that the Supreme Court has the power to declare whether a law is valid under the Constitution, that power is not a pronouncement set in stone.

Think of how our country would look now had the Supreme Court not changed its view of what is constitutional. Think of 1857, when the court handed down the outrageous Dred Scott decision, which said African Americans were not citizens.

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Money & Politics
10:21 am
Tue July 3, 2012

Gay Donors Open Wallets On Both Sides Of The Aisle

President Obama is introduced by singer Ricky Martin at a fundraiser hosted by Martin and the LGBT Leadership Council at the Rubin Museum of Art on May 14 in New York.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue July 3, 2012 8:26 am

In politics, money talks. And money from gay and lesbian donors is talking louder than ever in this election cycle.

That's partly a result of President Obama endorsing same-sex marriage, and it's partly because Republicans are starting to see contributions as well.

That's a huge change from just a few decades ago.

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Environment
5:39 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Metro Goverment Installs New Pollution Filters on Some Diesel Equipment

This John Deere tractor was retrofitted with the grant.
Erica Peterson WFPL

Some vehicles in Louisville Metro Government’s diesel fleet are now equipped with new pollution controls. 

With more than $1.6 million in federal and state grants, Louisville Metro has retrofitted 90 pieces of diesel equipment. Air Pollution Control District director Lauren Anderson says the new pollution controls will greatly reduce the amount of pollution the equipment releases into the air.

“Diesel particulate filters can filter out 90 percent of the harmful particulate from diesel emissions,” she said. “Ninety percent.”

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Local News
5:26 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Former Courier-Journal VP Latest to Sue Gannett Over Ageism

Former Courier-Journal  Vice President of Circulation Mike Huot was laid off last year, and is now suing the C-J and parent company Gannett for age discrimination.

Huot's total compensation was over $300,000, according to Gannett Blog. His lawsuit alleges that the paper brought in a younger employee to replace him. 

Today, Gannett Blog posted a copy of Huot's lawsuit.

 

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Environment
5:20 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Drought, High Temperatues Could Affect Kentucky Vineyards

 The high heat and lack of consistent rainfall is creating possible hardships for crops in Kentucky.  And that includes one of the more recent additions to the state’s agriculture industry: grapes.

There are about 120 grape growers spread out across Kentucky, mostly in the central, northern, and western regions. Patsy Wilson is the extension specialist for viticulture at the University of Kentucky—viticulture is the science, production and study of grapes. She says temperatures above 90 degrees can start to affect photosynthesis.

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Local News
4:48 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Former Kentucky Tourism Commissioner Fined $2,000

The Executive Branch Ethics Commission has fined former Tourism Commissioner Mike Cooper $2,000 in an agreement to resolve ethics charges.

Cooper, who resigned in February, was accused of misusing state resources for his own financial gain.

Cooper was publicly reprimanded Monday. He also waived his right to appeal.

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Politics
3:36 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Pension Task Force Says Everything is "On the Table" at First Meeting

A group of Kentucky lawmakers has a new summer assignment…shoring up the state’s failing pension systems.

At least two of Kentucky’s six pension plans are at a high risk for failure. And their troubles have been highlighted by Bloomberg, the New York Times and the Pew Center.

In response, the state has formed a public pension task force. Co-chairman Mike Cherry says he's dedicated to find a solution, and it may not be pretty.

“From my standpoint, everything’s on the table for this summer interim session,” he says.

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Local News
3:28 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Maurice "Bojangles" Blanchard Defies Southern Baptist Stereotypes

File photo

A familiar face showed up on the cover of Monday's Courier-Journal: A profile of Maurice "Bojangles" Blanchard looked at his life, his recent ordination, and some criticism from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President Albert Mohler. Reverend Mohler says Blanchard's ordination illustrated the rift between traditional Baptist churches and more liberal congregations like Highland Baptist Church, whom Mohler says "defy scripture."

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Politics
3:11 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Yarmuth Defends Health Care Law on Fox News

Appearing on Fox & Friends, U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., defended the Affordable Care Act on Monday.

The liberal congressman has accused Republicans—particularly Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell—of misleading the public about President Obama's health care law, but Yarmuth had a civil exchange on the Fox News Channel.

Check it out (h/t The 'Ville Voice):

Local News
2:50 pm
Mon July 2, 2012

Lighting Problem On Eggners Ferry Bridge Fixed

Photo from harrellhistory.wordpress.com

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says a wiring problem caused the navigation lights on the newly rebuilt Eggners Ferry Bridge in western Kentucky to malfunction Sunday  night.

Spokesman Keith Todd says the outage was reported by a boater and confirmed by state police.    

An electrical crew tracked down the problem this morning.

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