by JOSH JAMES –
Republicans dominated the dais at the annual Fancy Farm political picnic in western Kentucky over the weekend, but Democrats did gather for their annual soup bean supper at Kentucky Dam Village – and one prospective candidate sounded the alarm on the party’s uncertain future in the commonwealth.
While the dinner often serves as a morale booster for Democrats, emcee Matt Jones – a Lexington sports radio host who was floated as a possible congressional candidate in 2015 – took on the role of canary in the coal mine. He told the audience the window for Democrats to regain ground in the state is closing fast.
“I did a lot of analytics research considering the run for Congress and looked at how our state votes. In my opinion, we’ve got three to five years to make a move,” he warned. “If we don’t, we’re in trouble.”
Jones urged fellow attendees to branch out from the party’s strongholds and campaign outside their comfort zone to regain the trust of working class voters.
“We cannot any longer be the party of Lexington and Louisville. I know that’s where we win majorities, but if we’re the party of Lexington and Louisville… we’ll lose by 10 to 12 points in every election. We will. We have to go back to the mountains and get those folks back,” he said.
The Kentucky House is the final Democratically-controlled chamber in the south, and all seats are up for election this fall.