Politics

Businessman Donald Trump narrowly won Kentucky’s Republican Presidential Contest on Saturday, beating Texas Sen. Ted Cruz by 4 percent statewide.

The caucus was originally designed so Rand Paul could run for the White House and Senate re-election at the same time; of course, after a disappointing national run, Paul dropped out of the presidential race last month.

On Monday, Capitol reporter Ryland Barton talked with Warren County’s GOP Chair Scott Lasley, who helped organize the caucus.

Lasley said despite some concerns from voters about access to polling locations and electioneering, the caucus was “definitely more positive than negative at the end of the day.”

Listen to the interview in the player above.

On whether the caucus gave Kentucky Republicans more say in the presidential campaign:

“It’s hard not to. We were completely irrelevant in 2012, 2008. In May of 2012, we had a choice between Mitt Romney and Mitt Romney. And so even though the number of candidates were not as long as we would’ve hoped for a couple weeks ago, folks still had a choice of four reasonably competitive candidates that are moving forward.”

On the promise from state party officials that the caucus would make Kentucky more relevant nationally: 

“The week leading up to it I think most of us were disappointed. I think we thought there would be more attention paid. It was looking pretty good there for a second, with Carson coming, Trump on Tuesday, and Rubio was scheduled to come on Friday. I think most folks involved would say that would definitely be a disappointment in terms of how it played out.

“On Saturday, I though we got lots of attention. CNN was reporting from our location [in Warren County], I think they were in a couple more locations. The Washington Post was here. So I think that part was OK.”

Ryland Barton is the Managing Editor for Collaboratives.