UPDATED 5:56 PM ET MAY. 22, 2019
LOUISVILLE– In 2014, incumbent California governor Jerry Brown ran for re-election with 15 challengers. He won his primary by 35 points.
On the other side is Illinois’ former governor Bruce Rauner. At the time of his primary, Rauner was very unpopular with the Republican party. Rauner went on to win his primary by three points. Then, he lost his election by 16 points in the general election.
Governor Matt Bevin’s lead in the primary was more than that, but not as big as Jerry Brown’s. Kentucky’s incumbent governor won by about 13 points.
Minority Leader, Senator Morgan McGarvey (D-Louisville) says he thinks that will hurt Bevin in November. He said, “I think it spells real trouble for Matt Bevin.”
McGarvey explained, “The fact that 48% of Republicans went to the polls and voted against him, they voted against the job he’s done as governor the last four years, I think he has his work cut out for him to bring them back into the fold. I don’t think they like the way he has run things through the lawsuits or run governments in fits and starts, and they’re looking for a change at the top. I think Democrats can capitalize on that. I think people showed what they care about last night. They care about public education. They care about healthcare. They care about infrastructure. Andy Beshear has plans to do all of those things and make it a priority of his administration, rather than focusing on some of the social issues and things that don’t matter as much.”
His counterpart in the Senate, the majority leader, Senator Damon Thayer (R-Georgetown) argued Bevin did win by a large margin. He said, “Actually he won by 35,000 votes. That’s 34,917 votes more than he went by last time, and he ended up winning in a landslide against Jack Conway, another limousine liberal, which is exactly what the Democrats have nominated again.”
Thayer continued, “Andy Beshear is not well liked, or even adored like his father was, by Democrats. They’re not enthusiastic about him. He started out with 55% in the polls in January, and ended up winning with 38% of the vote. That means 2/3 of Democrats did not vote for Andy Beshear, that’s the story. He is not a likable guy to lead this ticket. I feel very strongly with the great economic record and pro-life record of Matt Bevin, and the Republican tendencies of the state, he’s going to get re-elected in the fall. I think we have a real chance to sweep all the offices. ”
One of the offices Thayer is hoping to flip is the attorney general’s office. Daniel Cameron won that race, running against current senator, Wil Schroder (R-Campbell). Toward the end of that campaign, ads at the end went started to go negative
Many Republican members of the Senate, including Thayer endorsed Wil Schroeder. However, now, Thayer says he is throwing his full support behind Cameron. “I was for Wil Schroder, and he’s a good friend of mine and a fellow caucus member, but I’m going to support Daniel Cameron.”
Thayer continued, “I didn’t like some of the tactics in the race, but I think Daniel proved that he is a viable candidate. He won a pretty strong victory. I think he is well qualified to be our attorney general, and I’ve already sent the message out via social media that we need to unite behind Daniel Cameron. I am for him. I’m going to vote for him. I’m going to help him.”
A Republican hasn’t held the office in more than 70 years. If Cameron wins, he will be the first African-American male to hold statewide office in Kentucky.