It's Democrat Kim Humphrey vs. Republican Suzanne Miles in House race to replace John Arnold

10/16/2013 08:53 PM

Two women will face off in the Dec. 10 special election to replace former Democratic Rep. John Arnold of Sturgis, who resigned last month in the wake of allegations that he sexually harassed female legislative staffers.

The Republican executive committee in the 7th District that covers southern Daviess County, part of Henderson and all of Union counties picked Suzanne Miles as the GOP nominee at a meeting Wednesday night. Miles works as a district staff member of 2nd Congressional District U.S. Rep. Brett Guthrie, R-Bowling Green.

Democrats from those counties selected Kim Humphrey on Tuesday night. Humphrey, of Union County, works for a Alliance Coal LLC, which has a major mining operation in the county, and is a former economic development official for the county.

The race is expected to attract plenty of attention for a December special election for a House seat. Not only do the allegations against Arnold cast a shadow over it, but the district has proven to be highly competitive. Arnold only won re-election last November by five votes — months before the allegations against him became public.

Plus, both parties are expected to use the race as a tune-up for 2014 in which control of the state House could be at stake. After Arnold’s resignation, Democrats hold a 54-45 advantage in the House.

About Ryan Alessi

Ryan Alessi joined cn|2 in May 2010 as senior managing editor and host of Pure Politics. He has covered politics for more than 10 years, including 7 years as a reporter for the Lexington Herald-Leader. Follow Ryan on Twitter @cn2Alessi. Ryan can be reached at 502-792-1135 or


  • Joe wrote on October 16, 2013 09:33 PM :

    Is there really a choice here? What coal employee in their right mind is a democrat, when the dems are waging war on coal? Call yourself a Kentucky democrat all you want—if you support the party in Kentucky, you’re supporting Obama, and Obama’s killing coal. Typical of mindless lifelong democrats in that part of the state.

  • Willie K. wrote on October 17, 2013 10:04 AM :

    What middle class person in their right mind is a Republican, when the reps are waging a war on the middle class? Trickle down done trickled out! The Republican party’s policies do not work and have been proven to be a disaster for our nation!

  • Bobby wrote on October 17, 2013 11:35 AM :

    Go Suzanne Go.

  • S-jones wrote on October 17, 2013 11:32 PM :

    So the Democrats pick John Arnold’s niece? Makes sense.

  • Yeah, so? wrote on October 18, 2013 11:13 AM :

    @S-jones: By marriage, apparently. So what? Does that make her a pervert too by some non-blood relationship? Republicans would look extremely petty by trying to make that an issue (“She has been long-married to a man who happens to be a nephew of an alleged pervert who resigned in disgrace!”). What matters is that she works for coal, has deep roots here, kept her nose clean, and is heavily involved in community service in the Henderson-Union area.

  • Ohcee wrote on October 18, 2013 12:46 PM :

    The Democrats only won the district by 5 votes last time…but wasn’t the district redrawn since then?? I know the current district has a gigantic Democratic registration advantage

  • Counterpoint wrote on October 18, 2013 06:12 PM :

    From what I read in John Arnold’s resignation letter, he said he could only do one campaign event in all of 2012 because he had heart surgery that spring. A friend of mine who is a maven of KY politics said that was part of why he nearly lost, also the Union County/Owensboro divide. His Republican opponent was well-funded too and from Owensboro.
    As redrawn, the district got a little less Dem by taking in redder parts of Owensboro (but by doing this they drew out the 2012 Republican opponent). If the Dem is strong and able, she should win this. She works for Alliance Coal, which is a big plus and takes the wind out of the sails of a possible Republican attack against her.

  • Kevin Williams wrote on October 22, 2013 07:53 AM :

    I am a ninth generation Kentuckian. My family moved here before we were a state. I am always amazed at Kentuckians love of coal. If coal was going to make Kentucky wealthy, we would already be the wealthest state in the union. Instead w are one of the poorest. Coal profits are pumped to out of state owners all the time and leave some of the poorest counties in the nation. The fact is more people work at Walmart in the Commonwealth than work in the coal mines. It is a fact. I want an industry that will support KY in the future not the past. Like Senator Lamar Alexander R-Tenn, recently said in Washington, he said he opposed Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining because he knows the economic value of the mountains. He said tourism brings in much more money to Tennessee yearly than coal does and its a renewable source. Only wish KY politicians were as smart.

  • Ziklag wrote on November 21, 2013 07:48 PM :

    I have knowledge of which I will speak due to the people that I speak to every day. Obama hates coal, oil and tobacco. I was at a coal mine today, spoke to one who has personal knowlege of this. Confirmed. The HUGE oil find in North Dakota(bigger than Saudi Arabias oil field), the Keystone pipeline, Obama is against them both. 11,000 capped oil wells in California, by Obamas order, and people still vote for this Sociaist Progressive. Democrat does not mean what it did 10 years ago.

  • Stephen Hopgood wrote on December 06, 2013 04:31 PM :

    It’s a shame we have to stoop to mud slinging to get some one elected to office
    What happened to the good in people. Right to Work does not work all the states that have it have less tax revenue and don’t have any more industry than before. I’ve Known Kim a long time she is a good Christian she will do a good job for Kentucky.

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