2018 candidate filing update: More intraparty skirmishes on tap

01/08/2018 11:41 AM

There’s more intraparty skirmishes lining up as candidates continue to file for the 2018 election season with the filing deadline looming on the 30th.

Some of the more hotly contested races could come in the form of repeats from previous elections, like the 8th District House race which will feature a familiar face, but in a much different environment than candidates last saw in 2016.

State House:

3rd Dist. Democratic candidate Martha B. Emmons, of Paducah, is the first candidate from either party to file for the open House seat created by Democratic Rep. Gerald Watkins retirement. Emmons co-owns the bicycle and fitness shop, BikeWorld, according to WKMS.

This district is expected to be a target by both sides of the aisle.

6th Dist. Republican Chris Freeland, of Benton, joins Republican Randall Fox, of Benton, in filing paperwork to enter the GOP primary for the district which encompasses all of Lyon, Marshall, and part of McCracken County. The seat is currently held by Democratic Rep. Will Coursey, of Symsonia.

8th Dist. Former Rep. Jeff Taylor, D-Hopkinsville, has filed to try and take back the seat he once held. The seat is currently held by Rep. Walker Thomas, R-Hopkinsville. Thomas defeated Taylor 51.9 percent, to 48.1 percent in 2016.

17th Dist. Republican Joey Franzell, of Morgantown, joins David Graham, of Rockfield, in the GOP primary to replace Rep. Jim Decesare, who is not seeking re-election in 2018. Decesare is one of four GOP lawmakers to be named as settling a secret sexual harassment settlement with a former House staffer.

19th Dist. Democrat Bill Fishback, of Bowling Green, has filed paperwork to appear in the Democratic primary in the Edmonson and partial Warren Co. District. Republican Brian Kent Strow, has also filed for the GOP primary.

The district is held by Rep. Michael Meredith, R-Oakland, who is also one of four GOP lawmakers to be named as settling a secret sexual harassment settlement with a former House staffer.

27th Dist. A familiar opponent will once again try and unseat Rep. Jeff Greer, D-Brandenburg. Republican Rachelle Frazier, of Brandenburg, a special needs teacher, has filed for the primary. Frazier previously ran against Greer in 2014 and 2016. Republican Nancy J. Tate has also filed for the primary.

34th Dist. Republican Robert James Douglas, of Louisville, has filed for the GOP primary in this heavily Democratic district. Rep. Mary Lou Marzian, D-Louisville, has held the seat since 1994.

49th Dist. Jennifer Baird Faith, a Republican from Shepherdsville, has filed for the open House seat, a special election has been called to replace Rep. Dan Johnson, R-Mt. Washington. Johnson’s widow Rebecca is the GOP nominee in that race against former Democratic Rep. Linda Belcher.

56th Dist. Republican Daniel Fister, R-Versailles, has once again filed for the partial Fayette, partial Franklin and Woodford Co. District, currently held by Rep. James Kay, D-Versailles. Joe Graviss, a McDonald’s franchisee from Versailles, is filing for the Democratic primary.

Kay has been asked by Pure Politics and other news outlets this year if he will seek re-election, current Woodford County Judge-Executive John Coyle will retire at the end of next year.

60th Dist. Roger Rankin, a Democrat from Union, joins Jesse Parks, a Democrat from Walton, in the Democratic primary to take on Rep. Sal Santoro, R-Florence, in the Republican held district.

67th Dist. Dayton Republican Bob Schrage has filed for the GOP primary. The seat is currently held by Minority Caucus Chair Rep. Dennis Keene, D-Wilder.

68th Dist. Fort Thomas Democrat Jason Kilmer, has filed paperwork to appear in the Democratic primary race. Republican Rep. Joe Fischer, R-Ft. Thomas, has held the seat since 1999.

69th Dist. Ryan Neaves, of Florence, has filed for the Democratic primary for the Northern Kentucky seat held by Republican Rep. Adam Koenig, of Florence.

State Senate

18th Dist. Chester Chuck Highley, a Democrat from Rush, has filed for the primary for the district encompassing Boyd, Carter and Greenup County. Democratic Sen. Robin Webb, of Grayson, has held the Senate seat since 2009. Webb has yet to file for re-election.

20th Dist. Democratic labor attorney Dave Suetholz, of Eminence, filed paperwork on Monday to enter the Democratic primary for a chance to take on state Sen. Paul Hornback, R-Shelbyville.

26th Dist. Karen Berg, a Democrat from Louisville, has filed for the Senate district which encompasses all of Oldham and part of Jefferson County. Sen. Ernie Harris, R-Prospect, has held the seat since 1995.

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