Nelson relying on his roots in Democratic primary treasurer's race

03/14/2015 03:32 PM

Rep. Rick Nelson, D-Middlesboro, is counting on his past and geographical location in the state in a five-way Democratic primary contest for state treasurer.

Nelson faces well-funded Louisville businessman Neville Blakemore; Rep. Jim Glenn, D-Owensboro; Daniel Grossberg, president of the Louisville Young Democrats; and former Democratic Rep. Richard Henderson of Mt. Sterling in the May 19 primary.

Saying he will “raise some money” for the contest, Nelson said he has yet to add to his campaign piggy bank, adding it would give the wrong impression for a sitting lawmaker to fundraise during a legislative session.

“It’s a rich man’s game for either party,” Nelson said. “That’s one advantage that I don’t have, but that’s just the way it goes sometimes.”

Nelson said no matter how much he raises he expects other candidates to perform better in their advertising plans.

“One millionaire running — no matter what money you have you’re going to get covered up anyway,” he said.

Still, Nelson thinks he has a chance in what will by all accounts be a sparsely attended primary. He’s elying on three bases to propel him to the Democratic nomination: eastern Kentucky, retired state school teachers and organized labor.

Nelson is a retired school teacher from eastern Kentucky, and he said he is a strong backer of organized labor in the state.

“If you can get that, you might not need a single dollar,” he said.

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