Politics

Politics
11:59 am
Fri December 14, 2012

Mayor Greg Fischer Mum on Re-Election

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer hasn’t made a decision on whether he’ll run for re-election in 2014.

Fischer is among the rumored Democrats to run for Kentucky's U.S. Senate seat held by Republican Leader Mitch McConnell. A survey by the North Carolina-based Public Policy Polling showed Fischer trailing McConnell by 5 points in a head-to-head contest.

Earlier this month, a mayoral spokesman told WFPL Fischer would announce his decision on re-election in January.

But when asked if he intends to run for a second term, Fischer says he will make an official decision next summer.

"I love this job. I'm inclined to do that, but I haven't made a decision yet," he says. "I’ve got a great job here. There’s a lot of work to do, and I plan to do this and hopefully more in future. We get great feedback from people and we got a lot of work to do, and we got a great team too."

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Politics
8:02 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Mayor Greg Fischer: Local Sales Tax Option Would Give Louisville 'Independence'

Mayor Greg Fischer
Credit Louisville Metro Government

Addressing the Louisville Metro Council, Mayor Greg Fischer said the city needs additional revenue if it wants to remain competitive and that a local sales tax option would give the city more independence from state government.

The mayor has been pushing lawmakers in Frankfort to allow the city to put temporary sales tax increases up for a public vote. He outlined his plan—dubbed Local Investments For Transformation, or LIFT — for council members Thursday.

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Politics
1:10 pm
Thu December 13, 2012

Barr Lands Key Committee Assignments

Congressman-elect Andy Barr
Credit Barr Campaign

Kentucky Sixth District Congressman-elect Andy Barr announced his committee assignments Thursday.

Barr will be a member of the House Committee on Financial Services, which is led by fellow Republican Spencer Baucus. The financial services panel is considered a "top-tier," committee that dealt directly with the bank bailouts and crafted the controversial Dodd-Frank Act.

In a news release, Barr says he is honored to receive the appointment, and wants to work on solving  helping the state's community banks.

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Politics
6:43 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Democrat Ed Marksberry Announces 2014 Senate Bid

Democrat Ed Marksberry
Credit Hillbillyreport.org

Owensboro Democrat Ed Marksberry is running in the 2014 Kentucky race for U.S. Senate.

Marksberry is a building contractor and former congressional candidate, who ran unsuccessfully against Republican Congressman Brett Guthrie two years ago. He lost that race by 35 points.

On his campaign website, Marksberry says he shares the experience of middle-class Kentuckians and knows first-hand their struggles in this difficult economy.

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Politics
5:31 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Fischer to Outline Local Sales Tax Option Plan for Council Members

Credit File photo

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer will discuss his strategy to create a local sales tax option with members of the Metro Council this week.

Fischer has been lobbying state lawmakers and other leaders across Kentucky since July, saying the city needs the tool in the face of budget shortfalls.

The option would give Louisville voters the ability to vote for or against a sales tax increase to fund specific projects. Before that could happen, however, the measure needs a two-thirds vote in both chambers of the state legislature and a statewide referendum to amend the state constitution.

Democratic Caucus spokesman Tony Hyatt says his members are eager to hear the mayor outline his plan, adding they have serious questions about the sales tax options before showing support.

"What are you going to do with the money if it is passed and how long would such a local option tax be in place? Are you going to use it for infrastructure projects or to supplement the budget? The caucus would like to hear directly from the mayor what he plans to do with the money if the effort is successful," he says.

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Politics
4:24 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

In Farewell Speech, Lugar Calls for More Unity, Less Posturing

Outgoing U.S. Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana says Congress and the president need to establish a closer working relationship, especially in the area of national security.

The Republican, who’s leaving Capitol Hill after 36 years, delivered his farewell address on the Senate floor today , saying the current dialogue on national security is one of the least constructive he’s ever witnessed.

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Politics
3:45 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

McConnell Unpopularity: A Talk With the Pollster

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell
Credit U.S. Senate

Yesterday it was revealed that Republican Leader Mitch McConnell is currently the most unpopular Senator in the country, according to a survey conducted by Public Policy Polling.

Today on Here and Now, host Jonathan Bastian spoke with Jim Williams, issue polling specialist at Public Policy Polling, who helped formulate and conduct the poll.  Also present was WFPL's political editor Phillip Bailey. 

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Politics
12:47 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

Poll: Hillary Clinton Leads Rand Paul in Kentucky

Sen. Rand Paul and State Secretary Hillary Clinton
Credit U.S. Senate, U.S. State Department

In a new survey released Wednesday, Public Policy Polling found that in a hypothetical 2016 presidential race Democratic Hillary Clinton leads Republican Sen. Rand Paul in Kentucky.

Clinton is the outgoing U.S. Secretary of State who many Democrats want to run in four years, while Paul is a rising GOP star and Tea Party favorite. Both are rumored presidential candidates at this point, but the PPP survey shows Clinton ahead of Paul by a 5-point margin in the commonwealth at 47-to-42 percent.

A large reason for Clinton's lead is that she is far more popular in Kentucky than President Obama, who has struggled amongst state Democrats.

From PPP:

Clinton has a 48/42 favorability rating with Kentucky voters. By comparison Barack Obama's approval rating is 38/59.

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Politics
4:03 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Poll: McConnell Most Unpopular U.S. Senator

Credit File photo

Republican Leader Mitch McConnell is the most unpopular Senator in the country, according to a new survey conducted by Public Policy Polling released Tuesday.

The poll shows that among Kentucky voters, McConnell has just a 37 percent approval rating along with a 55 percent disapproval and has only one-third of independents. But the GOP leaders is still ahead of all Democratic threats in 2014, including actress Ashley Judd, Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Crimes and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer.

From PPP:

The reason McConnell does decently well in the head to head match ups despite his poor approval numbers is that even though a lot of Republicans dislike him, most of them would still vote for him in a general election before they would support a Democrat.

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Politics
1:05 pm
Tue December 11, 2012

Kentucky State Sen. Kathy Stein Plans Apology for 'Nimrod' Comment

A Lexington lawmaker says she will apologize for making a disparaging comment about another legislator that appeared on Facebook.

Democratic state Sen. Kathy Stein told the Lexington Herald-Leader that she made the comment on an old blog and thought it would be private, but the commenting system was powered by Facebook and so her post also appeared on her Facebook account.

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