About Ryan Alessi

Ryan Alessi joined cn|2 in May 2010 as senior managing editor and host of Pure Politics. He is now pursuing an advanced degree in non-fiction writing from Murray State University and is a regular contributor to Pure Politics. Ryan has covered politics for more than 14 years, including seven years as a reporter for the Lexington Herald-Leader. Ryan can be reached at purepolitics@twcable.com or @mycn2.

So far 2015 Democratic primary for governor is unusually quiet for an open-seat race

08/04/2014 10:45 AM

MAYFIELD — While the 2015 governor’s race was a consistent subplots among Republicans attending the 2014 Fancy Farm festivities, most Democrats spent the weekend avoiding the subject or at least downplaying it. Even Attorney General Jack Conway — the only Democratic candidate who has announced for next year’s race — seemed to consciously place his candidacy to the side. He didn’t mention his run for governor in his three-minute remarks to Democrats Friday night at the Marshall County Bean Supper,... Read more 

Is it time for Kentucky to create a debate commission?

08/03/2014 06:05 PM

MURRAY — Here’s the good news: Both Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell and Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes said this weekend they “sure hope” they can debate each other. The bad news is that it’s now August and words and deeds are not matching up. Their campaigns have yet to agree on the parameters for a debate — or even another joint appearance after Saturday’s yell-fest at the annual Fancy Farm’s St. Jerome Parish picnic. Neville Blakemore III, a Democrat... Read more 

Despite a modern selfie, old-time politics rules in biggest Fancy Farm ever

08/02/2014 07:10 PM

FANCY FARM – While this year’s political speaking at St. Jerome Parish began with a selfie, it quickly returned to its 19th century roots of zingers and criticism between the U.S. Senate candidates, their allies and a record-breaking crowd. Both Democratic candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes and Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell acquitted themselves without making gaffes as they yelled over the evenly divided crowd of largely blue t-shirt wearing Grimes supporters and red-clad McConnell backers. But it was the supporting... Read more 

GOP Breakfast: McConnell and Paul step up efforts to flip incumbency argument

08/02/2014 10:13 AM

Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes might be the challenger, but Republicans are concentrating their messages to describe her as a pawn of the Democrats — and essentially as a pseudo-incumbent. U.S. Sens. Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul delivered that unified message at the Graves County Republican breakfast Saturday, which is a warm-up for the Fancy Farm picnic’s political speaking event. “She’s a new face for the status quo – for no change whatsoever. She’s a new... Read more 

Potential changes to death penalty in Kentucky gaining traction among lawmakers

08/01/2014 04:20 PM

PADUCAH — By the statements and reactions from lawmakers at Friday’s Judiciary Committee meeting, Kentucky’s legislature is unlikely to abolish the death penalty any time soon. But a more than two hour meeting on the future of capital punishment revealed a growing consensus that Kentucky leaders must move to make changes to the system. That includes adopting some of the recommendations the American Bar Association made its review of Kentucky’s system in 2011. For instance, Kentucky doesn’t require the preservation... Read more 

Comer says pension systems need 'more transparency,' funding and experienced board members

07/31/2014 03:18 PM

MURRAY — Kentucky will have to infuse more tax dollars into its main public employee retirement system but, at the same time, should require the fund to disclose much more than it currently does, Agriculture Commissioner James Comer said Thursday. Comer, speaking to the Murray Rotary Club Thursday afternoon ahead of his appearance at this weekend’s Fancy Farm Picnic-related events, is expected to announce this weekend his intentions about running in next year’s Republican primary for governor. But the first... Read more 

Conway: 'I'm getting very, very angry' at feds over inaction on gas anti-trust case

07/09/2014 05:24 PM

Despite urging the Federal Trade Commission and U.S. Justice Department to look into gas price gauging in Louisville, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway said the case that began his first year in office might not be done by the time his second term ends next year. Conway began investigating since 2008 whether the merger of Marathon Oil and Ashland, Inc., in the late 1990s has led to a monopoly in wholesale gasoline distributors in the Louisville area where gas is... Read more 

Nick Storm to take over as Pure Politics anchor

07/09/2014 12:34 PM

I am thrilled to announce that Nick Storm, who has served as lead political reporter for Pure Politics for the last two-and-a-half years, will become the next anchor and managing editor of the program effective Thursday. Nick has fully immersed himself in Kentucky politics since joining the team in December 2011 — just in time for Gov. Steve Beshear’s inauguration for a second term. Since then, he has covered the developments in the U.S. Senate race, two special legislative elections,... Read more 

Americans for Prosperity -- partly funded by Koch brothers -- launches Ky. operation, hires Julia Crigler as director

07/08/2014 10:42 AM

The Koch brothers are coming to Kentucky. Well, at least one of the groups they help fund is. And it plans to be in the Bluegrass for a long time. The non-profit conservative policy and advocacy group Americans for Prosperity, which is partially funded by the conservative industrialists Charles and David Koch, has hired Republican strategist Julia Bright Crigler as its state director. Crigler will launch an operation that will have two regional offices and a long-term presence in pushing... Read more 

Conway cracks $750K mark in first fundraising report covering seven weeks

07/08/2014 08:18 AM

UPDATED WITH VIDEO: The Democratic frontrunner in next year’s governor’s race, Attorney General Jack Conway, announced Tuesday that his first fundraising report filed the previous night will show $751,329 raised since Conway entered the race May 6. Conway and his running mate Sannie Overly announced the figure, adding that the money comes from individual donors — not from Conway’s personal accounts. The fundraising numbers are through Conway’s first seven weeks in the race, between May 6 and June 30. The... Read more 



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