RPK Targets two House Democrats for missing votes

03/14/2017 04:39 PM

UPDATED: The Republican Party of Kentucky is continuing to keep pressure on House Democrats who have missed votes, or are voting against bills being promoted by the Republican supermajority with a round of targeted posts and websites launched on Tuesday.

Rep. James Kay, D-Versailles, and Rep. Russ Meyer, D-Nicholasville, have been singled out by the Republican Party with the round of Facebook posts and micro-sites calling them out for missing votes this session on the House floor.

The RPK tells Pure Politics they’re spending around four-figures for the targeted Facebook posts, which will direct social media users in the representatives districts back to the single page websites.

“It’s clear from the votes they’ve chosen to skip that they fear their constituents discovering the truth: Russ Meyer and James Kay are just another pair of liberal Democrats,” RPK communications director Tres Watson said. “They care more about protecting their political livelihood than representing the people of their districts.”

The RPK is targeting Kay over missed votes on: House Bill 2, the informed consent bill; Senate Bill 5, which bans abortions after 20 weeks into pregnancy; Senate Bill 8 which defunds Planned Parenthood; HB 128, which would allow for an elective Bible literacy course in public schools; HB 396, which allows the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet to provide state resources to the Kentucky State Police Foundation, HB 408, aimed at fighting child pornography; HB 524, aimed at fighting human trafficking; HB 308, which is promoted at fighting opioid abuse.

The website targeting Kay, casts him as “no-vote kay,” when it comes to bills dealing with children.

In a response, Kay called the attack “fake news” from the RPK.

“Glad to see the Republican Party fake news machine is up and running,” Kay said. “Looks like the KY GOP needs alternative facts to cover up their attacks on the working people of Kentucky and selling out to special interests, not to mention trying to sell out public schools for profit. I will continue to work hard for my people and for the people of Kentucky.”

The Republican Party is targeting Meyer for missed votes on four bills: Senate Bill 8 which defunds Planned Parenthood; HB 454, which calls on schools to teach an essential curriculum and requires the Kentucky Department of Education to develop an age-appropriate drug awareness and prevention program; HB 314, which expands controlled substance monitoring through KASPER; HB 308, which is promoted at fighting opioid abuse.

Meyer said he had missed several votes because of deaths in his home county, and he planned to make up those votes he has missed.

“There have been several deaths in Jessamine County over the last two weeks that have touched me personally, and I have served as a pallbearer in two funerals,” Meyer said in a statement. “I will still be able to record votes on those issues that I missed on the House floor.

“If the RPK questions why I missed time on the floor to be with my loved ones in my community, that’s their issue,” he continued. “I would encourage the RPK to look up the missed votes of its own members.”

Lawmakers who miss a vote are permitted to file paperwork with the House clerk and cast votes when they return to the chamber, but lawmakers are only allowed to cast those votes permitting that their vote would not change the outcome of the overall vote.

The Republican Party has been active this session spending money and directing robocalls to constituents of Democratic members who have spoken out against legislation endorsed by the RPK.

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 nicholas.storm@charter.com.


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