Former union negotiator Donohue seeks to smooth out "dysfunctional" General Assembly

07/09/2012 08:13 AM

Former union negotiator and Democratic Representative Elect for Louisville’s 37th House District Jeff Donohue spoke with Ryan Alessi about the state of Kentucky’s General Assembly, pension reform, and an KREF complaint against Donohue for an alleged campaign contribution.

Donohue said the General Assembly is “dysfunctional” and that bringing members together is a main reason why he is going to Frankfort.

“One of my expertise I would say I when I was at UAW 4 is being able to bring people to the table and find a common starting point and being able to move forward,” Donohue said (at :59 in the video).

Donohue defeated Democratic incumbent Wade Hurt in the primary election. Hurt, who switched parties from Republican to Democrat after being elected did have support in the election from Democratic leadership in the House, but Donohue said he spoke to House Speaker Greg Stumbo and the issue is, “water under the bridge,” (at 3:14 in the video).

One of the main issues facing the legislature is the nearly 30 billion dollars in unfunded liability in the pension system.

While Donohue would like to wait to see what options are available to legislators he did say he wanted to, “make sure we fund a pension for those individuals,” (4:47 in the video.)

A Kentucky Registry of Election Finance complaint has been filed against Donohue and his campaign for an alleged home owned by someone else as a campaign headquarters which was not reported as an in-kind contribution.

“We weren’t doing anything improper,” Donohue said. (8:31 in the video above) “I feel like we’ll be vindicated.”

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or


Subscribe to email updates.

Subscribe and get the latest political intelligence delivered to your inbox.