On Camera: Host says he won't be a candidate in 2011 elections

06/21/2010 05:01 PM

Jim Host, the Republican businessman and civic leader, said he won’t be running for office in next year’s statewide elections, which include the governor’s race.

Host told cn|2 Politics in a recent interview that his time for being on the ballot has passed. Host ran for lieutenant governor in 1971 but lost to Democrat Julian Carroll, who went on to be governor and is now a state senator.

But Host, in no uncertain terms, said he doesn’t plan be on the campaign trail next year. Here’s what he told cn|2 Politics earlier this month in Louisville after a downtown-development related announcement:

After building a successful business with Host Communications Inc. that broadcasted college sports, Host remained engaged in public policy. He served as secretary of the Commerce Cabinet under Gov. Ernie Fletcher. And he has been chairman of both the Louisville Arena Authority’s construction of the downtown events center and the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games — two major efforts that began during Fletcher’s tenure and will wrap up by the end of this year.

Among the offices up for election next year are:

  • governor and lieutenant governor, in which Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear is seeking re-election with new running mate Jerry Abramson,
  • attorney general, in which incumbent Jack Conway could seek a second term but is running this fall for U.S. Senate
  • state auditor, which will be open because of term limits
  • secretary of state, which will be open because of term limits
  • treasurer, in which incumbent Todd Hollenbach has opened a re-election campaign fund
  • commissioner of agriculture, which will be open because of  term limits.

Earlier, Monday, the Underground Rooster blog wrote that Host is “quietly considering” running for governor but didn’t cite sources for those rumblings.

So far, no Republican has announced an intent to challenge Beshear but an independent slate of Gatewood Galbraith and Dea Riley, both of Lexington, has begun campaigning. A candidate for governor must join up with a lieutenant governor before raising money, according to Kentucky law.

- Video produced by Holly Thompson with reporting by Ryan Alessi


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