The Chatter: Legg concedes in GOP primary, Hoover's statement on Stumbo and more

05/26/2011 04:49 PM

Republican Hilda Legg conceded defeat to Bill Johnson in the GOP primary for secretary of state on Thursday after a recanvass of the counties’ voting machines showed few changes in the results.

Johnson led Legg by 1,114 votes, according to the initial unofficial results from last Tuesday’s primary. Legg closed the gap by only six votes after the recanvass. In all, Johnson picked up 5 extra votes, while Legg picked up 11 additional votes as a result of the recanvass, according to the secretary of state’s office.

In a statement, Legg wished Johnson success in the fall against Democratic nominee Alison Lundergan Grimes.

“Although I wish the outcome had been different, the people of Kentucky have spoken,” Legg said. “I congratulate Bill and wish him continued success. Whatever our differences, they are set aside, because we will now stand as fellow Kentuckians and Republicans.”

Johnson’s campaign thanked Legg after her concession.

“We would like to thank Ms. Legg for running a positive campaign during the primary,” James Young, political director for the Johnson campaign, e-mailed to Pure Politics. “We are excited to have her on our team.”

Hoover responds to Stumbo’s claim on Pure Politics

House Republican Leader Jeff Hoover denied that he consented to House Democrats’ plan to abruptly adjourn the House during this spring’s special session without having a chance to override the governor’s vetoes.

Democratic House Speaker Greg Stumbo said this week on Pure Politics that Hoover and Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear both agreed to the plan that essentially gave Beshear the last word on the bill fixing the Medicaid budget.

Hoover said in a statement to Pure Politics that House GOP leaders “strongly opposed the House Democrats’ proposal of adjourning sine die and allowing Governor Besehar the ability to make vetoes without allowing the General Assembly an opportunity to override those vetoes.”

The House agreed to the Senate’s version of the Medicaid budget fix, including a provision that would cut funding for state agencies and K-12 education. Stumbo said in the interview that he suggested to the governor that if the House passed that, Beshear could use his veto pen to strip out the provisions cutting education.

“While we liked the policy of not cutting education, we made clear during our meeting with the House Democratic Leadership, as well as in remarks on the House floor that evening … our opposition to their strategy to adjourn,” Hoover’s statement said.

Gatewood apologizes on behalf of Beshear

Independent gubernatorial candidate Gatewood Galbraith has become the second candidate with eyes on the governor’s office to criticize the man currently behind the desk, Gov. Steve Beshear, for skipping an appearance with President Barack Obama.

Galbraith’s campaign sent out a letter saying Galbraith was apologizing to all military members and their families for Beshear’s recent decision to not attend an event at Fort Campbell in early May when Obama visited the troops.

Beshear had said he wasn’t notified of the president’s stop at Fort Campbell until it was too late to change his schedule. But critics have called the governor’s excuse unacceptable.

In his campaign release, Galbraith continued that criticism.

“Simply put, Beshear was afraid to be photographed standing next to the president because he thought it might cost him votes in Kentucky,” part of the release said. “His behavior is totally unacceptable for a governor of Kentucky.”

Galbraith talked about that during an interview Thursday on Pure Politics, which airs at 7 p.m. EST/6 Central.

Farmer’s court date canceled

A scheduled court date in Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer’s divorce case was canceled today, the Lexington Herald-Leader reports. .

No reason for the cancellation was given, but Farmer’s lawyer, Richard Guarnieri, told the Herald-Leader that neither Farmer or his wife, Rebecca, felt motions made by her were needed to be heard by a judge.

Guarnieri refused comment when asked if the couple were trying to reconcile. He said no other hearings have been scheduled and that the case is on hold.

-Kenny Colston and Ryan Alessi


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