The Chatter: Wild debate for auditor; P'Pool braces for unions; Comer celebrates C-J endorsement

10/11/2011 08:24 AM

In between blasting each other on Monday night’s appearance on KET, the two candidates for state auditor occasionally talked about how they would take over for two-term Auditor Crit Luallen next year, if elected.

Democrat Adam Edelen played the role of the aggressor for most of the night, questioning the qualifications of Republican John Kemper because of Kemper’s personal bankruptcy issues and for not being up to date on paying property taxes on his $1.3 million home that is on the brink of foreclosure auction.

Kemper sought to undermine Edelen’s credentials by claiming that the Democrat couldn’t remain impartial because of his connections to current officials and fundraising from some elected officials whom he would likely have to audit.

But Kemper also has acknowledged accepting donations from some local officials.

For much of the first half of the one-hour joint appearance on KET, the two candidates repeatedly tangled over those arguments with Edelen launching a series of sharp comments at Kemper. And the two often talked over each other.

(Programming note: Watch Pure Politics tonight at 7 p.m./6 p.m. Central or 11:30 p.m. /10:30 Central for highlights and analysis of the debate.)

GOP candidate P’Pool braces for unions to help Conway

Republican candidate for Attorney General Todd P’Pool told GOP supporters over the weekend that he expects Louisville-based unions to spend more than $500,000 against him.

P’Pool made the comment at a Bowling Green Republican picnic and was prompted to mention it when a low-flying plane’s loud engines interrupted his speech.

*Comer touts Courier-Journal’s endorsement
*
Republican candidate for agriculture commissioner James Comer landed the endorsement of the Louisville Courier-Journal’s editorial board on Sunday.

And he explained why to the Republican crowd of about 75 people in Bowling Green:

Comer, a state representative and farmer from Monroe County, is running against Democrat Bob Farmer of Louisville. Farmer has a marketing background, and Comer has repeatedly criticized Farmer for not having a background in agriculture issues.

But Farmer’s campaign has tried to deflect that criticism. In a statement to Pure Politics, Farmer’s spokesman Bright Wright said Comer’s “tea party” voting record shows that he’s not qualified for the job.

“The job is 65 percent regulatory, protecting Kentucky consumers, and 35 percent marketing, promoting Kentucky Proud,” Wright said. “Comer’s right wing voting record has been against consumer safety and he has no marketing experience.”

The agriculture commissioner works with Kentucky’s farm community and oversees a budget of about $29 million. In addition to working with agriculture and farming issues, the ag department regulates gas pumps, county fairs and amusement rides.

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