The first of Kentucky’s Republican constitutional officers seeking election to governor has officially filed to run.
According to the secretary of state’s office, Auditor of Public Accounts Mike Harmon submitted his candidacy papers Friday. He had previously filed a statement of spending intent with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance. According to quarterly reports, Harmon has raised almost $65,000.
“Over the last year and a half, sadly Kentuckians have had their liberties and their livelihoods suspended and stolen while promises to make those losses whole have gone for the most part unfulfilled,” Harmon said in a statement when he announced his candidacy last year.
“I learned a long time ago to make few promises because someone’s word should be their bond, and that bond, if at all possible, should be honored and unbroken. But I will make this promise that if I am elected, I will do my best to take time to listen to the people of Kentucky and to serve each and every one to the best of my abilities regardless of their political affiliation.”
Harmon has been twice elected as state auditor, first in 2015 and then 2019.
He’s the third Republican to formally file a gubernatorial campaign with the secretary of state’s office. Two other candidates, David Cooper and Robbie Smith, filed in November.
The Republican primary has 12 candidates who have announced plans to vie for governor. Other constitutional officers seeking the Republican nomination include Attorney General Daniel Cameron and Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles. Other candidates are former U.S. Ambassador Kelly Craft, Somerset Mayor Alan Keck, state Rep. Savannah Maddox, Anthony Moore, Johnny Rice, Eric Deters and Robert Devore.
Earlier this month, incumbent Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear filed his candidacy papers with the Secretary of State’s office.
Peppy Martin, a former Republican nominee for governor, has filed a statement of spending intent for the Democratic primary. Democrat Geoff Young, who most recently lost to Republican U.S. Rep. Andy Barr in the 6th Congressional District, has tweeted plans to run for governor but has not filed any paperwork yet.
The deadline for candidates to file is Friday, Jan. 6.. The primary election is May 16.
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