House members honor retiring Rep. Dwight Butler for being a consummate gentleman

04/16/2014 09:02 PM

Rep. Dwight Butler, R-Harned, often jokes that he moved his seat in the state House from up toward the front of the chamber to the back so that he can see the bigger picture.

His colleagues honored him Tuesday among the other retiring lawmakers as one of the best at thoughtfully considering the big picture when casting his votes. That thoughtfulness and his gentle demeanor has won him respect across the chamber over his 20-year career.

“I have never heard one person — Republican or Democrat, legislator or lobbyist — say a bad word in any way about the gentleman from Breckinridge,” Hoover said, adding that one colleague called Butler “the best of them all.”

Butler’s consistent friendliness and thoughtfulness helped him get away with crossing party lines more than a few times. This session, for instance, he was one of four Republicans who voted with Democrats for a bill to raise the minimum wage earlier this session.

Butler explained his process over the last 20 years for making those decisions, which is one part philosophy, one part empathy and one part proximity.

A realtor and auctioneer, Butler first won a House seat in 1994 to represent Breckinridge and Ohio counties. Eight years later, the map was redrawn to give him one of the most challenging districts that stretched from eastern Daviess County through Hancock and Breckinridge counties, across a sliver of Hardin County and into the tip of western Bullitt County.

The House reshaped the district once again into a more compact district this year. Still, Butler decided to retire to focus on his business and family.

Here’s what Hoover said about Butler on Tuesday:


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