Comer officially kicks off gubernatorial campaign alongside running mate state Sen. Chris McDaniel

09/09/2014 12:01 PM

A large crowd gathered in Tompkinsville Tuesday to see Agriculture Commissioner James Comer officially kick off his campaign and introduce his running mate, state Sen. Chris McDaniel, R-Taylor Mill.

The crowd of around 1,000 Kentuckians were in attendance in Comer’s hometown where the Republican gubernatorial candidate pointed to landmark locations in the town from the stage to talk about how he grew up.

“We have a lot of family values in this community,” Comer said. “So many hard working middle class families trying to make a living for their families.”

But said there are problems with drugs, crumbling infrastructure and competitive disadvantage that hinders state from creating good paying jobs for those people.

“We can do better. And we have a conservative record to prove it,” Comer said.

To drive home that point, Comer touted achievements in department of Agriculture such as new initiatives for veterans, cleaning out waste, and fighting federal government saying “we took on the Obama administration and won.”

“Now is the time for bold leadership and the buck stops with the governor,” Comer said. “As your governor, I will be humble enough to listen, strong enough to lead.”

Before Comer’s remarks, Republican House Leader Jeff Hoover was first up on the stage leading the crowd it “Comer Country” chants. Hoover told the crowd the area does a couple things well, barbeque and winning elections.

“We can and will do better with Jamie Comer as our governor.”

Talking about the James Comer for governor signs seen around the area, state Rep. Bart Rowland said the residents of Tompkinsville know him a little differently.

“Around these parts, we just call him Jamie. And its really no surprise to us that he is here today. We have all known this day is coming for a long time,” Rowland said. “We fully expect he’s going to win and be next governor of this state.”

Rowland added that it was going to be a team effort to elect Comer and asked attendees to put signs in their yards, help campaign, and even donate.

Hoover introduced Alliance Coal CEO and former Bush fundraiser Kelly Knight as honorary co-chairs for the campaign.

“Kelly and I believe that for Kentucky’s future success, we need Jamie Comer’s leadership,” Craft said listing parts of Comer’s platform including improving the job climate and school choice.

“Kentuckys future can be bright with the right leader. Jamie is that right person, in the right place,” Craft said.

McDaniel said Comer had been showing him around Tompkinsville and it reminded him how similar the two areas of the state are, talking about the experiences that show them “we can do better.”

On when he first met Comer, McDaniel says he was introduced to the Commissioner during his 2011 race and was impressed with him.

“I have a message for some of the other campaigns out there. Farmers were the original businesses and never underestimate a Kentucky farmer,” McDaniel said.

McDaniel went on to talk about the work ethic shared by the two and said the office will need that type of dedication.

“We both rise early, we both go to bed late, we both pride ourselves in providing our customers with a quality product,” McDaniel said. “Those are the types of values you can expect to see from him as governor of the state.”

McDaniel then shifted to policy during his speech, asking why the state has so much waste and says these are tough questions next governor has to answer.

“Ladies and gentlemen that is why I am proud to stand here today and to stand with you to make sure Tompkinsville’s own Jamie Comer is the next governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky,” McDaniel said.

Comer closed the announcement by telling the crowd this would be a 14 month marathon which will require a strong support system as he called their families to the stage to make his final statements.

“Today, history will show that Kentuckians from all corners of the state gathered here to join in the effort to move Kentucky forward,” Comer said. “We’ve got the juice to win this campaign.”

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