Gov. Andy Beshear handily wins Democratic nomination in Kentucky primary

The incumbent will face Daniel Cameron, Kentucky’s current attorney general, in November

By: - May 16, 2023 9:13 pm
Image of Andy Beshear, Kentucky's Democratic governor

Gov. Andy Beshear seen on the night he was elected in November 2019. (Photo by John Sommers II/Getty Images)

A crowd of several hundred joined Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear in shouting “Four more years” at a victory rally for Beshear early Tuesday night at the Kentucky History Center in downtown Frankfort.

Beshear trounced his two opponents in the Democratic primary election for governor — Peppy Martin and Geoff Young — and now faces Republican
Daniel Cameron in the Nov. 7 general election.

Beshear, with his wife, Britainy, and their two children, Will and Lila, at his side, started speaking about 7:10 p.m. and chided the Republican candidates for governor for trying to get the job by tearing down each other.

He said viewers who watched their TV ads must think the GOP candidates “are all WOKE.”

Beshear then rattled off some of his accomplishments in office — lowest unemployment rate in the state’s history, 46,000 more jobs than before the COVID-19 pandemic, a half-billion dollars for clean water, expansion of broadband, use of medical cannabis, sports betting and a new bridge between Covington and Cincinnati without tolls.

In his next four-year term, Beshear said his goals include four-laning the entire Mountain Parkway in Eastern Kentucky, passing universal pre-kindergarten and building on the state’s economic success.

Before Beshear spoke, his running mate, Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman, asked the crowd to “put your faith in us one more time.”

Beshear’s father, former Gov. Steve Beshear, and mother, former first lady Jane Beshear, also took to the stage to campaign for their son.

The elder Beshear said Kentuckians were hungry for leadership four years ago after a rocky term of Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.

“They found that leadership in Andy Beshear and Jacqueline Coleman,” said the former governor and urged the crowd “to fight” through the Nov. 7 general election.

He then noted that Tuesday’s Republican gubernatorial primary generated among the lowest voter turnout for the party in the state’s history.

Several prominent Democrats attended the rally, including Gov. Beshear senior adviser Rocky Adkins, former Lt. Gov. Crit Luallen and Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg.

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Jack Brammer
Jack Brammer

Jack Brammer, a native of Maysville, has been a news reporter in Kentucky since 1976. He worked two years for The Sentinel-News in Shelbyville and then from 1978 to 2021 in the Lexington Herald-Leader's Frankfort bureau. After retiring in December 2021 from the Herald-Leader, he became a freelance writer for various publications. Brammer has a Master's degree in communications from the University of Kentucky and is a member of the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.