Fancy Farm 2014

The tiny Fancy Farm community of Western Kentucky was the focus of U.S. politics on Saturday during the unofficial kick-off of the 2014 election season in the state.

The headlining events during the annual Fancy Farm picnic were speeches—peppered with Fancy Farm's traditionally rowdy crowd—by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and his Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes.

You can find our past coverage of the 2014 Senate race here.

Pages

Politics
11:51 am
Mon August 4, 2014

Listen: Sounds of Fancy Farm Heckling From the Middle of the Crowd

Supporters for Mitch McConnell, in red and Alison Lundergan-Grimes, in blue, gather before the political speeches at the Fancy Farm picnic.
Credit Alix Mattingly/WFPL News
Read more
Politics
6:52 am
Mon August 4, 2014

Democratic Strategist Under Fire for Criticizing Mitch McConnell's 'Asian' Wife

Democratic strategist Kathy Groob's Twitter account

A Kentucky Democratic strategist has deleted her Twitter account after being sharply rebuked by party leaders for referencing the ethnicity of Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell’s wife in a series of political attacks.

The latest controversy marks the second time during this year's Senate contest in which Democratic operatives have mentioned the Asian heritage of McConnell's wife, Elaine Chao.

Over Fancy Farm weekend, McConnell told a crowd at Saturday morning's GOP breakfast that his wife was playing a major role in his re-election bid.

Read more
Politics
8:16 am
Sun August 3, 2014

Fancy Farm: Mitch McConnell, Alison Lundergan Grimes Strike Different Tones In Combative Speeches

Senator Mitch McConnell speaks at the annual Fancy Farm Picnic.
Credit Alix Mattingly/WFPL News

PADUCAH—Republican Senator Mitch McConnell and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes traded partisan blows at the 134th Fancy Farm picnic Saturday.

With fewer than 100 days till the election, the two candidates gave speeches that struck starkly different tones.

First, Grimes tagged McConnell as a heartless, out-of-touch incumbent, particularly on women’s issues.

Read more
Politics
12:49 am
Sun August 3, 2014

Fancy Farm: Ag Commissioner James Comer Officially Enters 2015 Governor's Race

Agriculture Commissioner James Comer beside his wife, T.J., as he announces his bid for governor.
Credit Alix Mattingly/WFPL News

  FANCY FARM—Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer officially announced his bid for governor Saturday at the 134th annual Fancy Farm political picnic. He's the third candidate to launch an gubernatorial bid in the 2015 race.

"It's been my dream come true to be your commissioner of agriculture," Comer said before a packed audience at the St. Jerome Church picnic grounds. "And I view the people of Western Kentucky as our family. So [my wife] T.J. and I have chosen this time, and this place, to say to all of you, I will be a candidate for governor in 2015."

Read more
Local News
12:32 pm
Sat August 2, 2014

Live Updates From Kentucky's Fancy Farm: Grimes, McConnell Trade Barbs

James Comer speaking at the 2014 Fancy Farm picnic.
Credit Joseph Lord/WFPL News

  Update 3:45 p.m.: James Comer Is Running for Governor

As he did the day before, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer took jabs at 2015 gubernatorial candidates.

This time, though, he also said he's officially running for governor in 2015.

— JL

Update 3:25 p.m.: McConnell Draws Obama, Grimes Parallels

Read more
Politics
10:00 am
Sat August 2, 2014

Fancy Farm: Republicans Must Be Bolder In Courting Minority Voters, Rand Paul Says

Senator Rand Paul speaks at The Night Before Fancy Farm event hosted by the Marshall-Calloway GOP.
Credit Alix Mattingly/WFPL News

AURORA—Republicans are doing well in states like Kentucky, but need to be bolder in appealing to minorities if they hope to win national elections.

That’s according to Senator Rand Paul, who delivered a message to voters Friday touting his efforts to broaden the GOP base ahead of the annual Fancy Farm picnic.

Speaking at the Marshall-Calloway County Republican dinner in front of a predominately white audience, Paul said the GOP doesn’t have to give up its core message to grow its appeals among minority voters.

Read more
Politics
7:00 am
Sat August 2, 2014

Fancy Farm: 60 Pounds of Beans Fuel Kentucky Political Rally

The food served at the Democrat's Marshall County bean supper.
Credit Jacob Ryan/WFPL News

GILBERTSVILLE — The focus of the annual Fancy Farm picnic is the political speeches.

But that's Saturday night.

The night before, Democrats gathered for their traditional  pre-Fancy Farm bean dinner — more than 60 pounds of beans were consumed by nearly 500 people at the Kentucky Dam Village Convention Center.

Chef Richard Lindsay said the planning and organizing for the bean dinner began months in advance with orders and estimates, but the cooking is a one day affair.

Read more
Politics
11:51 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Fancy Farm: Alison Lundergan Grimes Throws Red Meat to Bean Supper Crowd

U.S. Senate Candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes addresses the crowd at the 19th Annual Marshall County Bean Supper on Fri., Aug. 1.
Credit Jake Ryan / WFPL

GILBERTSVILLE—At an annual event known for its bean dish, Kentucky Secretary of State and U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes offered some red meat to a Democratic audience.

Grimes once again challenged her opponent, incumbent GOP Sen. Mitch McConnell, to a public debate, drawing cheers from a friendly crowd.

Read more
Politics
11:24 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

Fancy Farm: James Comer Jabs Opponents Ahead of Gubernatorial Announcement

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer speaks beside his wife, T.J., at The Night Before Fancy Farm event hosted by the Marshall-Calloway GOP.
Credit Alix Mattingly/WFPL News

AURORA — On the eve of the Fancy Farm picnic, Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner James Comer Friday night took jabs at the current crop of gubernatorial candidates, setting the stage for his likely entrance into the race.

Comer has been in Western Kentucky for the past week in advance of the annual political event, where political observers expect he'll announce his own bid for the Republican nomination.

Related: WFPL's coverage of the 2014 Fancy Farm picnic

Read more
Local News
12:00 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

On the Eve of Fancy Farm, Remembering Gatewood Galbraith and an Old Kentucky Oratory Tradition

Gatewood Galbraith and Dea Riley during their campaign for governor and lieutenant governor.
Credit File photo

It’s Fancy Farm, 2011. Gatewood Galbraith, clad in his trademark fedora, takes the stage. 

“Thank you very much folks," he tells the applauding crowd. "Gatewood Galbraith here. First of all, I’m gonna go away from my regular speech for just a second and tell you Gov. Beshear, that was the worst darn speech I ever heard anybody give!”

The audience cheers.

Dubbed by many Kentucky political observers as one of the best stump speakers in recent history, Galbraith’s populist oratory style and steely resolve was a perfect match for the event.

Read more

Pages