Politics

Politics
4:25 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Lawmakers Plan to Question Coventry CEO Over Contract Issues

Kentucky lawmakers will get their first chance tomorrow to ask a private Medicaid operator why it’s having so much trouble negotiating contracts with healthcare providers.

The CEO of CoventryCares will speak to lawmakers at a meeting of the Interim Joint Health and Welfare Committee. Coventry has been fighting with the Eastern Kentucky hospital network Appalachian Regional Healthcare over reimbursement rates and a new contract.  

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Politics
4:01 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Yarmuth: McConnell is Endorsing Dishonest Campaigns

In a House floor speech Tuesday, U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky., slammed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., for opposing legislation that would require Super PACs to disclose the names of their contributors.

Last Friday, McConnell told a conservative think tank that keeping donors names a secret is a First Amendment right, but Yarmuth says anonymity allows individuals to distort the truth without being held accountable by the voters.

Check it out:

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Politics
3:58 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Mazzoli's Wife Dead at 78

The wife of former Congressman Ron Mazzoli has died, according to family friend and former aide.

Helen Mazzoli was 78 years old. According to WHAS-11, she reportedly suffered a stroke in the Mazzoli's home Monday.

Ron Mazzoli was a Democratic congressman who represented Kentucky's Third Congressional District from 1971 to 1995. The two were married in 1959, and have two children and four grandchildren.

Politics
3:33 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Paul Addresses Criticism, Death Threats Over Romney Endorsement

U.S. Senator Rand Paul, R-Ky., has received harsh criticism from his base over his recent endorsement of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in the fall election.

Earlier this month, Paul announced his support for Romney despite the fact that his father—Congressman Ron Paul—is still pursuing delegates. Since the endorsement, vocal Tea Party activists have accused Sen. Paul of betraying the so-called liberty movement that brought him to office.

He has also received death threats but dismissed what he calls a small group of “Internet extremists” who are preaching violence against his family.

"The people that are over the top and even making death threats on the Internet, I hope they are not serious, but they are a small number of people making a disproportionate number of the comments," Paul told The Washington Times. "A lot of those people may not even vote or may not have voted for my father. They don’t represent the majority of the people that support what we’re fighting for."

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Politics
2:29 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Kentucky Democrats Focusing on State House Campaigns

With no statewide races on the ballot this year, the Kentucky Democratic Party is focusing its efforts on the General Assembly. 

Republicans have made taking over the state House a priority and have pledged to raise one million dollars to do so. But KDP spokesman Matt Erwin says Democrats have already raised near that amount and they plan to do more than protect incumbents. 

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Politics
2:00 pm
Tue June 19, 2012

Noise & Notes to Make Radio Debut

For over a year, WFPL Political Editor Phillip M. Bailey has edited the Noise & Notes news blog on WFPL.org. Now he has something for your ears.

The Noise & Notes radio show is a relaxed conversation on issues of importance to Louisville, from the news of the day to broader discussions on policy, politics and politicians.

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Politics
10:59 am
Tue June 19, 2012

McConnell Being Scolded for Opposing Disclose Act

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., is being scolded for flip-flopping on campaign disclosures after his denunciation of legislation requiring that Super PAC donors provide their names.

Speaking before the American Enterprise Institute last week, McConnell argued that contributors to third party organization have a right to remain secret and that the Disclose Act is threatening their free speech. But local and national critics point out that wasn't McConnell's position a few years ago when he was at the forefront of opposing campaign finance reform.

"Money is essential in politics, and not something that we should feel squeamish about, provided the donations are limited and disclosed, everyone knows who's supporting everyone else," McConnell told NPR's Talk of the Nation in 2003.

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Politics
5:06 pm
Mon June 18, 2012

City Pledges Support to Reopen Old Kentucky Kingdom

File photo

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is pledging his support for Kentucky Kingdom days after Bluegrass Boardwalk Inc. announced it was pulling out of the project to re-open the old amusement park.

Last Friday, the Koch walked away from its deal with the state fair board despite approval of hefty tax incentives. Bluegrass Boardwwalk CEO Natalie Koch told WFPL that the board voted against the deal because the group’s business model wouldn’t fit well with state regulations and oversight.

Councilman David Tandy, D-4, is chairman of the labor and economic development committee. He says council members were surprised to learn the project had failed, but city and state leaders need to move forward.

"There are a number of different amusement park operators out there that I’m sure are wanting to take a look at this opportunity now that it has re-presented itself," he says. "And we’ll go forward from there."

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Politics
1:50 pm
Mon June 18, 2012

Tea Party Joins Fight Between State and Christian Health-Sharing Group

A decades-long court fight between a Christian health organization and the Kentucky state government is drawing the ire of some Tea Party activists.

Christian Care MediShare allows people to sign up for accounts and pay into a shared fund, then draw money to pay medical expenses. The state Supreme Court has ruled that MediShare is an insurance company and is not allowed religious exemptions to state law. Despite that, the organization has not changed its operations in the commonwealth.  

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Politics
12:57 pm
Mon June 18, 2012

Wicker Decries GOP Lethargy in Third District Race

Republican congressional candidate Brooks Wicker is frustrated by the lack of interest from the Louisville GOP to unseat Democratic incumbent John Yarmuth in the fall election.

The Louisville Young Republicans recently organized an event where Wicker criticized the "defeatist attitude" among fellow Republicans. He also decried the party’s executive committee for failing to support his bid and not having enough bumper stickers on their cars.

Wicker says those comments were taken out of context, but that local GOP activists and rank-and-file members are looking past the race.

"It’s a segment of the party that I’m talking about," he says. "I’m not talking about the leadership of the executive committee and I’m not talking about anybody that’s in a leadership position at this point. I’m talking about the other people when I’m reaching out to activists and to past participants in the Republican process."

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