Kenny Colston

Kentucky Public Radio Frankfort Bureau Chief

Kenny Colston is based in the state capitol and files pieces for public radio stations across the commonwealth. Before joining KPR in 2012, he covered state government for Insight CN2. A graduate of the University of Kentucky, Kenny was a four-year staff member of the Kentucky Kernel, serving as editor-in-chief in his last year. 

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Politics
9:01 am
Mon August 27, 2012

Yarmuth Says Several Democrats Could Unseat McConnell in 2014

One of Kentucky’s two Democratic Congressmen believes his party has a good shot at unseating U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell in 2014.

So far, many of the state’s top Democrats have announced plans to avoid challenging the Senate Minority Leader. That includes Attorney General Jack Conway, who ran for Senate against Rand Paul in 2010, former state Auditor Crit Luallen and current Auditor Adam Edelen.

But Congressman John Yarmuth, D-3, says he believes most of the other well known Democrats could unseat McConnell, including Governor Steve Beshear or Congressman Ben Chandler.

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Local News
1:50 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

Yarmuth Says Democrats Could've Better Sold Health Care Law

U.S. Congress

Congressman John Yarmuth of Louisville says his party dropped the ball on promoting the Affordable Care Act.

Yarmuth is one of the few public officials in Kentucky who has supported the health care law, and he actively defends it from criticism. But he says his fellow Democrats could have done a better job explaining the legislation.

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Politics
5:05 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Despite Akin Controversy, McConnell Says GOP Chances at Senate Majority Are "50-50"

McConnell
Kenny Colston Kentucky Public Radio

A recent controversy over a Missouri Senate candidate’s comments on rape has not diminished U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell’s outlook for November.

McConnell is hoping to become majority leader next year. Depending on who wins the presidency, he needs either three of four GOP Senate victories this fall to do so. He recently asked Republican Congressman Todd Akin to drop out of his race to give Republicans a better chance in Missouri, but Akin declined.

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Politics
1:01 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Beshear Will Name New Chief of Staff Soon

Former Chief of Staff Mike Haydon

Governor Steve Beshear says he will appoint a new chief of staff soon, despite still being saddened by the sudden loss of his former chief of staff, Mike Haydon.

Haydon died suddenly of a heart attack earlier this month. Haydon worked in government for more than three decades, and had been Beshear's chief of staff since 2010.

Beshear called Haydon his “right arm,” but says the position needs to be filled.

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Politics
11:55 am
Thu August 23, 2012

Long Dormant Kentucky Hemp Commission Will Be Revived

Agriculture Commissioner James Comer says he is restarting the long-dormant Kentucky Industrial Hemp Commission.

The General Assembly created the commission ten years ago to look into hemp's potential in the commonwealth, but it has never met. This morning, Comer announced that he is reforming the commission and, per state law, he will be the chairman.

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Politics
1:30 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Repeal and Replace: Some Health Care Reforms Senators Paul and McConnell Like

McConnell and Paul
Kenny Colston Kentucky Public Radio

Kentucky's two U.S. Senators, Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul, are some of the most vocal opponents of the Affordable Care Act.

The two co-headlined a Tea Party rally in Frankfort yesterday to protest the health care law. During the rally, Paul said he wants to not only repeal the law, but replace it with a different one. Other Republicans have taken a similar stance, but the details behind the Republicans' preferred approach are largely unknown.

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Politics
12:35 pm
Wed August 22, 2012

Conway Says He Won't Run in 2014, Edelen 'Highly Unlikely'

Conway, Edelen, Grimes

Two of Kentucky's highest profile Democrats say they are not interested in taking on U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell in 2014. 

Attorney General Jack Conway, who ran for Senate in 2010 against Republican Rand Paul, tells Kentucky Public Radio he isn't interested in running for the chamber again.

“I cannot forsee a scenario where I would run for the Senate in 2014, because I stated on several occasions when I ran for re-election as attorney general that I would finish out that term as attorney general,” he says.

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Politics
3:33 pm
Tue August 21, 2012

At Rally, Paul Says Republicans Will Replace Health Care Law With 'Health Care for Everyone'

Kenny Colston Kentucky Public Radio

Kentucky’s two U.S. Senators say they both want to repeal the Affordable Care Act, but wouldn’t elaborate on reforms to replace the measure. The senators headlined a Tea Party rally held today in Frankfort.

With about 300 people in attendance, this was Senator Mitch McConnell’s biggest Tea Party event to date, and his message wasn’t a surprise. Both he and Senator Rand Paul rallied the crowd around the idea of repealing the federal health care law, which they call "Obamacare."

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Politics
8:59 am
Tue August 21, 2012

Conway Says He's Open to Building More Exemptions Into Prescription Pill Law

A leading advocate of Kentucky's new prescription pill law says he's ready to listen to doctors who want to change it.

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway has made fighting prescription pill abuse one of his top priorities. Earlier this year, he was a leading supporter of House Bill 1, which mandates that most doctors use the KASPER pill tracking system.

Several doctors have complained that having to put every patient into the KASPER system is burdensome. And Conway says he's willing to loosen some restrictions to help the medical community.

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Politics
2:19 pm
Mon August 20, 2012

Rand Paul, James Comer to Discuss Industrial Hemp

File photo

High-profile supporters of industrial hemp will rally for their cause at the Kentucky State Fair this week.

U.S. Senator Rand Paul and Agriculture Commissioner James Comer will hold a news conference on Thursday morning on the fairgrounds. Paul is the co-sponsor of a Senate bill that would make hemp legal again across the U.S. And Comer supports a state-level bill that would allow it in Kentucky. He does not support legalizing hemp's cousin crop, marijuana.

Comer says Kentucky has always been well-suited to growing hemp, and the crop could be helpful at a time like this.

“It’s more resilient to drought conditions than any crop I know," he says. "It’s a green crop, you don’t have to put out nitrogen fertilizer out for it, so it’s a win-win situation.”

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