Politics

The Kentucky House of Representatives on Tuesday elected its first Republican Speaker since 1921.

Rep. Jeff Hoover was chosen by the new Republican majority. It is the first time Republicans have controlled the state House of Representatives in nearly 100 years. The GOP now controls the legislatures in all of the southern states.

Hoover is the first Republican speaker since Joe Bosworth of Bell County, who served in 1920 and 1921. Charles Blandford is the only other recorded Republican House Speaker in Kentucky, who served from 1896 to 1897, according to research by the Courier-Journal.

Hoover has pledged to “manage expectations” of the new Republican majority.

Democrats Choose Adkins to Lead Caucus

House Democrats have elected state Rep. Rocky Adkins to lead the caucus through its first session as the minority party.

Adkins was elected without opposition following a nearly two-hour closed-door caucus meeting. A Democrat from Sandy Hook, Adkins had been the majority floor leader when Democrats were in power. But Republicans won 64 of the legislature’s 100 seats in November, winning a majority for the first time since 1921.

Democrats also elected Rep. Dennis Keene of Wilder as minority caucus chairman and Rep. Wilson Stone of Scottsville as minority whip.

Adkins said he hopes to work with the Republican majority when he can, but promised to voice opposition on policies the party disagrees with.