Commentary

COMMENTARY

On his 99th birthday, Jimmy Carter is fondly remembered for hammering in the hills of Kentucky

BY: - October 1, 2023

The lively young girl was excited about her brand-new home, as well she should be. It had been built in a miraculous five hot and sometimes rainy days, by a gang of friendly volunteers with Habitat for Humanity. She was showing me what would soon be her very own room. Telling me where she planned […]

COMMENTARY

Prevention is conspicuously absent from Louisville Republicans’ ‘Safer Kentucky’ plan

BY: - September 29, 2023

After watching the Sept. 26 news conference held by Louisville House Republicans to introduce their proposed 18-point Safer Kentucky Act, I pulled out my scribbled, contemporaneous notes from a Sept. 19 meeting of the legislature’s Task Force on School and Campus Safety.  An hour into that meeting, I wrote: “These meetings are a way for […]

COMMENTARY

Ahem, Rand Paul, aren’t you forgetting something?

BY: - September 25, 2023

In a fundraising letter boosting Republican Attorney General Daniel Cameron for governor, GOP Sen. Rand Paul praised the state’s top cop for suing Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear over “virtually every authoritarian edict” the incumbent “unleashed on Kentucky.” Paul meant Beshear’s emergency executive orders that were aimed at keeping Kentuckians out of the hospital and the cemetery […]

COMMENTARY

Brereton Jones leaves lessons for reformist politicians

BY: - September 22, 2023

Kentucky never had a governor quite like Brereton Jones, who died Monday, and it may never again. His legacy is one of reform, with lessons for reformers. Jones wasn’t the first high-minded millionaire to use wealth to gain high office, but he did it with a most unusual pedigree. His political career began in West […]

COMMENTARY

Bipartisan backlash killed most of Sanders’ anti-transparency agenda

BY: - September 21, 2023

It’s doubtful that Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders anticipated the national firestorm she would ignite on Sept. 8 when she called the state’s General Assembly into special session — commencing Sept. 11 — to enact legislation aimed at upending the state law governing the public’s right to know, the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act. Clearly, […]

COMMENTARY

Tell us more, Mitch and Joe

BY: - September 15, 2023

Mitch McConnell, who has a policy of saying little, is exactly nine months older than Joe Biden, who says too much and will be 81 on Nov. 20. The president’s rambling makes some people worry about his health, but we know a lot more about it than we do about the Senate Republican leader’s, even […]

COMMENTARY

Why I’m very worried about a Gov. Cameron 

BY: - September 13, 2023

In Alabama, the governor earlier this year forced out the state’s early childhood education director, who is a Black woman, over the use of a teacher training book that the governor deemed “woke.” In Arkansas, the state’s education department, led by appointees of the governor, recently announced students could not get credit towards graduation by […]

COMMENTARY

Beware Sanders-like attack on government transparency by Kentucky’s supermajority

BY: - September 12, 2023

Arkansans set a high bar for Kentuckians in responding to their governor’s direct assault on the state’s public records law, and their message is clear: Stop putting the public’s interest last yet again.  As one critic loudly proclaimed, “Avoiding public scrutiny is neither bold nor conservative; it’s weak and reactionary. Requiring elected officials to obey […]

COMMENTARY

So many prayers. So little action.

BY: - September 11, 2023

I woke at 5 a.m. last Thursday thinking about the victims of the Old National Bank shooting in Louisville and googled their names so I could say a specific prayer: Thomas Elliott, James Tutt Jr., Juliana Farmer, Joshua Barrick and Deana Eckert; plus the six who were injured, James Evans, Julie Anderson, Dana Mitchell, Darrin […]

COMMENTARY

Kinship care families are waiting for a champion

BY: - September 5, 2023

I recently spoke to a legislative committee about Kinship Care. As I sat at the table during the hearing, my heart was hurting for so many kinship families in Kentucky who are in serious need and seem to be forgotten. There are many kids in Kinship Care who’ve been abused, neglected and removed from their […]

COMMENTARY

Will McConnell’s proudest accomplishment be his party’s political undoing?

BY: - September 4, 2023

A Louisville audience last month applauded U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell as he touted his historic success in remaking the federal courts. But McConnell’s proudest accomplishment could also prove to be his party’s electoral undoing as voters again showed the next day in Ohio where a measure sought by anti-abortion forces was defeated. The federal judiciary […]

COMMENTARY

As concern about Mitch McConnell’s health grows, his legacy remains strong

BY: - September 4, 2023

Even if Mitch McConnell’s health prevents him from accomplishing his stated goal of serving as Senate Republican leader through 2024, he will still be the longest-serving Senate leader of any party, one who remade the federal judiciary from top to bottom. The impact of that achievement will outlive the 81-year-old Kentuckian, who appeared to freeze […]