PRESS RELEASE: Drew Curtis campaign statement on Kentucky Coal Association



October 8, 2015 – The Kentucky Coal Association invited the Democratic and Republican nominees for governor to make presentations during its annual meeting today. As the only candidate for governor who has not accepted money from the coal industry or its allies, Independent candidate Drew Curtis was not invited to participate.

Curtis’s statement on the matter is as follows: “They didn’t invite me because I won’t sell them laws. Usually I don’t like being left out of debates but this one I’m totally fine with.”

Drew Curtis is a Lexington businessman, digital entrepreneur, and the independent candidate for governor of Kentucky. He has been the sole owner and chief operator of, one of the world’s most popular news aggregator websites, since he founded it 16 years ago. In addition to being an expert on the subject of mass media and news, he is a member of Lexington’s Economic Development Investment Board and the University of Kentucky’s Innovation Network for Entrepreneurial Thinking. He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.

For more information, please contact:

Heather Chapman
Communications Director
Drew Curtis for Governor

Matt Bevin And Seniors On The Draw


In the gubernatorial candidate debate at Centre College, Republican Matt Bevin deviated slightly from his campaign MO:

— He says something pretty strong.

— He walks it back or claims he didn’t say it.

— A reporter calls his hand with proof, such as videotape, that he did say it.

— He still denies what he said and sometimes gets testy with the reporter.

This time, Bevin got a little chippy with his Democratic opponent, Attorney Gen. Jack Conway. Okay, he’s castigated Conway before.

Anyway, Conway asked Bevin if he favored random drug testing for Medicare recipients. Bevin responded by saying that Medicare recipients are “on the draw”and that he believed “we should have random drug testing for people who are on social benefits.”

Bevin also bristled at Conway: “We’re talking about Medicaid in this instance, Jack. And you know that’s what we’re talking about.”

No sooner had the debate–co-sponsored by the American Associaton of Retired Persons– concluded than the Kentucky Democratic Party blasted out an email with a video showing Bevin at a Louisville Tea Party forum in April declaring unequivocally, “I firmly believe we frankly should drug test people that are on Medicaid and Medicare. We just should.”

The email claimed, “…Matt Bevin proved why Republicans called him an ‘East Coast Con Man’ and a “Pathological Liar.’ Just like he always does, Bevin is lying to Kentuckians — he said on video that seniors on Medicare should be drug tested.”

“Matt Bevin’s statement that Kentucky seniors who have paid into Medicare their entire lives and earned these benefits are ‘on the draw’ is wildly insulting,” KDP Chair Patrick Hughes chimed in on the party website. “Tonight, Bevin blended fantasy, paranoia and his trademark chronic dishonesty — and in the process he proved exactly why Republicans called him an ‘East Coast Con Man’ and a ‘Pathological Liar.’”

Daniel Kemp, a Conway campaign spokesperson, added in an email, “Attorney General Jack Conway strongly disagrees with Matt Bevin’s statement disparaging Kentucky seniors. Our seniors have paid into Medicare their entire lives – and Jack Conway believes they deserve to receive the benefits they’ve earned, end of discussion. Bevin’s comments that seniors receiving Medicare are ‘on the draw’ is not only inaccurate, it’s incredibly insulting. And it’s just more proof that Kentuckians cannot trust Bevin to serve as our governor.”

Louisville WHAS radio suggested that Bevin’s “on the draw” comment “may not find him favor with Senior Citizens in the State.” This senior citizen who is thankful for Medicare agrees.

But the larger story is his flat statement—“…we frankly should drug test people that are on Medicaid and Medicare”—and his hedge—“We’re talking about Medicaid in this instance.”

It will be interesting to see how—or if—Bevin tries to spin his “on the draw” observation. My guess is he won’t do much, if anything. He’s a far-right-wing ideologue who’s not a fan of government programs designed to help people who need help.

“On the draw” wasn’t a slip of the tongue. He meant it.

Anyway, I’m pretty sure that Bevin’s “on the draw” opinion and the video of him calling for drug tests for those of us on Medicare will find their way into a Conway campaign commercial.

If Conway wins on Nov. 3, the KDP ought to give Bevin the campaign’s MVP Award. He’s their gift that keeps on giving.

Capt. Matt Bevin’s white whale?


Somebody at Kentucky Democratic Party headquarters in Frankfort changed that sign that drives Matt Bevin batty.


Bevin is the GOP gubernatorial hopeful. His Democratic opponent is Attorney Gen. Jack Conway.

Bevin is bonkers over the sign.

“WE CAN’T TRUST MATT BEVIN,” it first said. When Bevin spied it, he stopped near the sign and made a video ridiculing the message.

The Dems made fun of Bevin for getting so riled that he made fun of the message. They also changed it to challenge, “WE STILL CAN’T TRUST MATT BEVIN.”

The new message made Bevin so mad that he went inside the headquarters to complain.

No sooner did Bevin leave than David Bergstein, the KDP PR guy, batted out a news release, quoting KDP Chair Patrick Hughes: “We would be happy to chat with Bevin about his refusal to release his tax returns, his failure to pay his taxes, his lies about his positions on critical issues and his chronic dishonesty which has led even Republicans to call him a ‘Pathological Liar’ and an ‘East Coast Con Man.’”

Bevin’s apparent obsession with the sign made national news, doubtless pleasing Bergstein, Hughes and the other KDP bigwigs. Bevin “went into Democrat Party Headquarters and screamed at a secretary,” Politico reported.

Come on, Politico, it’s “Democratic” HQ, not the Joe McCarthyesque “Democrat” HQ.

Anyway, Bevin, the native New Englander, must have read Herman Melville’s classic novel Moby Dick, the story of a peg-legged ship captain with a whale fixation.

Capt. Ahab has lost a leg in a close encounter of the worst kind with Moby, who is his obsession. Bevin, er, Ahab, sees the Democrats, sorry, the whale, as the incarnation of evil. Ahab will sail the seven seas, no matter how tempest-tossed or otherwise perilous, to stick a harpoon in his tormentor.

In the end, Moby sinks Ahab’s ship and sends the captain and everybody aboard to Davy Jones’ locker except for Ishmael, the teller of the tale.

Sam Youngman, the Lexington Herald-Leader’s political writer, called Bevin’s invasion of Democratic HQ “ill-advised and jaw dropping.” Politico called his whole campaign “stumbling.”

The Democrats’ sign seems a sign of the times for Bevin. A trio of polls suggest he might be headed Davey Jones’ way. He was up by three in June, down by three in July and now down by five.

Drew Curtis Bluegrass Poll Campaign Statement


September 30, 2015 — The latest Bluegrass Poll was released today and has Drew Curtis at 7 percent.

We are disappointed in not just the results of the poll, but the methodology used to achieve them. Specifically, the poll changes populations in the middle of the survey, which is a deviation from standard polling methods. For the overall “Who would you vote for” question, the population was 701 likely voters. The population for the rest of the questions was 866 registered voters.

Additionally, likely voters are typically determined by asking a respondent if they voted in the last election. Many of Drew’s strongest supporters have been disenchanted by politics for years, and would not have been deemed likely voters. The simple fact is that many of them haven’t found a candidate they liked in a long time–until Drew came along.

While we respect the Bluegrass Poll media partners for their fair coverage of this election, SurveyUSA has a reputation for polling results that are proven wildly inaccurate come Election Day, as we saw last year in the McConnell-Grimes Senate race. So it’s unfortunate, but we’re hopeful that we’ll see another poll or two drop before November that uses a more traditional and accurate methodology. We expect it would show an alternate outcome.

In the meantime, as Drew has said in speeches before: Assert your ultimate authority over this process and elect the best candidate for the job. If everyone who ever thought government doesn’t work for them came out to vote, Drew would win in a landslide. This fact remains true today.

Congressman Ed Whitfield Retiring

Republican Congressman Ed Whitfield (KY-01) is calling it quits aka retiring. Reckon he’s calling it quits because he’s not a Kentucky resident? Or could it be he’s quitting because of an ethics investigation?

Lexington Herald- Leader
Whitfield has been the subject of an ethics investigation during the past year that revolves around his wife, Connie, an attorney who worked as a lobbyist on behalf of the Humane Society of the United States. Read more.

In any event I don’t expect he’ll be moving back to Kentucky from his current 4356 Westover Place NW Washington, DC 20016 residence.


Dems sign still drives Matt Bevin bonkers


“WE STILL CAN’T TRUST MATT BEVIN,” the Kentucky Democratic Party headquarters sign still says. 

Bevin still can’t trust himself with the sign.

The GOP gubernatorial hopeful got miffed at the message again today. This time he stormed the enemy HQ to give the staff a piece of his mind.

The Dems loved it.

“This bizarre moment demonstrates just how unhinged Matt Bevin has become, but if he wants to talk to someone at the KDP all he has to do is make an appointment,” jabbed Patrick Hughes, KDP chair, in a news release headlined “Matt Bevin Crashes the KDP. Again.”

The sign drives Bevin bonkers.

“WE CAN’T TRUST MATT BEVIN” the marquee sign beside Interstate 64 in Frankfort originally said. When Bevin spied it, he got so steamed that he stopped on the roadside and made a web video making fun of the message.

The Democrats made fun of Bevin for making fun of the message.

Maybe Bevin, an ex-Army officer, figured this time he’d scare the Dems into taking down the sign.

He handed the Dems another opportunity to make fun of him.

No sooner did Bevin decamp than David Bergstein, the KDP PR guy, batted out the news release.

Hooted Hughes: We would be happy to chat with Bevin about his refusal to release his tax returns, his failure to pay his taxes, his lies about his positions on critical issues and his chronic dishonesty which has led even Republicans to call him a ‘Pathological Liar’ and an ‘East Coast Con Man.’”

Barbed Bergstein: “In another moment demonstrating how unhinged Matt Bevin has become, this afternoon he took a break from not releasing his tax returns to stop by the Kentucky Democratic Party Headquarters and complain about our billboard…This is the second time this month that Bevin has come to the KDP for this purpose.”

The release included a photo of Bevin inside Democratic HQ.

Bait goes for naught if fish, and politicians, won’t bite. You’ve got to wonder how many more times Bevin will bite on that state capital sign.

In his video, Bevin sarcastically suggested that the Dems ought to replace the hand-lettered sign with a fancy, flashing LED sign. Showing no mercy for the Republican standard-bearer, the unapologetically irreverent Blue in the Bluegrass website thinks the KDP ought to  take him up on it, programming the electronic sign to flash: “Somebody change Matty’s diaper; he’s getting cranky.”

China, Climate Change And Cap-And-Trade

The Guardian
China, the world’s biggest carbon polluter, will launch a national cap-and-trade scheme in 2017, the White House said on Thursday.China, the world’s biggest carbon polluter, will launch a national cap-and-trade scheme in 2017, the White House said on Thursday.

The move, announced on the eve of a summit in Washington between Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping, would make China the world’s biggest carbon market, overtaking the European Union, and could strengthen global efforts to put a price on carbon. Read more.

It appears that China understands climate change better than our right-wing money grubbing politicians here in the USA.

The Hill
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Monday that cap-and-trade energy legislation is “dead” in the upper chamber.

The Senate’s top Republican spoke before a local chamber of commerce in eastern Kentucky.

“I think cap-and-trade, which is also known as the national energy tax, is dead in the United States Senate,” McConnell said, according to WKYT. Read more.



I’m glad Jack Conway is topping our ticket


I’m an old reporter. So I know it’s unwise to argue with folks who buy their ink in barrels.

But Lexington Herald-Leader scribe Larry Dale Keeling is tad off base in his column about the recent gubernatorial candidate debate–or forum, or whatever—that starred Democrat Jack Conway, Republican Matt Bevin and independent Drew Curtis.

I don’t know who Keeling plans to vote for. But in the interest of full disclosure, Jack Conway is my candidate. So feel free to malign my musings as partisan palaver or wishful thinking, or a combination thereof.

Anyway, I’m with Keeling when he called the three-way matchup a “gubernatorial Q&A.” He couldn’t bring himself to call it a “debate.”

It wasn’t. A debate is what Lincoln and Douglas did in 1858.

One hundred and fifty seven years hence, what passes for candidate “debates” – presidential, gubernatorial, senatorial, you name it – are more like simultaneous press conferences.

In addition, Keeling wrote that as he viewed the “Q&A” he “began to wonder how many Kentucky Democrats/Republicans also watching the first televised forum featuring all three candidates might be saying to themselves, ‘Gee, I wish Drew Curtis headed up our party’s ticket.’”

Here’s where I part company with the Fourth Estate gent.

I’m a union card-carrying Democrat. I don’t wish for a nanosecond that Curtis topped my party’s ticket. I couldn’t be happier that Jack Conway does.

He just might turn out to be the most pro-union governor in Kentucky history.

Conway was my candidate from the start. I was glad the Kentucky State AFL-CIO endorsed him even before the filing deadline last January.

Okay, after I finished with Keeling’s column – I often read his musings — I conducted an admittedly unscientific poll among some of my Democratic friends. Some of them belong to unions and others don’t.

They’re all sticking with Conway.

One of them called Curtis “a likeable flake, like Gatewood.” He meant the late Gatewood Galbraith, the perennial third party-independent candidate for whatever office was up for election.

Like Galbraith, Curtis is a gadfly whose politics are hard to peg.

Anyway, Keeling also wrote, “Whatever the reason, Curtis came across as the candidate most comfortable in his own skin, the candidate who answered every question without bobbing and weaving and the candidate quickest on his mental feet to call his opponents to task when they did bob and weave.”

The reason seems pretty obvious to me. Like Galbraith, Curtis doesn’t have to carefully choose his words. So what he if flubs? Hogs will fly before he gets elected.

So third party or independent candidates can say whatever they want. Knowing you’re a sure-fire loser is a great way to get comfy in your own hide on the stump.

In addition, Keeling claimed, “Independents almost always draw votes from the middle of the political spectrum. Curtis is no exception. So, their respective parties’ bases become all the more important to Bevin and Conway. And that’s problematic for Conway.”

History, the subject I taught for two dozen years in a community college, suggests that third party candidates mostly draw from the political fringes.

Moderates tend to be pretty practical voters. They’re not prone to cast protest votes.

Anyway, go ahead and accuse me of whistling past the graveyard. But I suspect Curtis is more Bevin’s bane than Conway’s.

The last Bluegrass Poll, taken in July before Curtis got in the race, had Conway up 45-42 with 13 percent undecided. With Curtis as a candidate, the spread was Conway 43, Bevin 38, Curtis 8 and the rest undecided.

So Curtis subtracted two percent from Conway and four percent from Bevin—advantage Conway, at least so far.

Who knows what the next Bluegrass Poll will show? But it wouldn’t surprise me if the survey reveals Curtis is still siphoning more support from Bevin than from Conway.

Said Keeling: “Although Bevin reportedly has ignored the Republican Party’s establishment and structure during this campaign, the hatred of President Barack Obama is as strong in Kentucky as it is anywhere in the country. So, the anti-Democrat turnout in November is assured.”

Keeling may be right. But a lot of Bluegrass State citizens—nearly all of them, not coincidentally, white folks–despised the president in 2011, too. Even so, Democrat Steve Beshear got reelected in a landslide over Republican David Williams who worked overtime to tie the governor to the president. (Bevin is trying to make “Conway” and “Obama” synonyms.)

Like Williams, Bevin is an uber-conservative union-buster who is about as cuddly as a porcupine.

Added Keeling: “…Conway’s reluctance to act in the Kim Davis case has to temper enthusiasm for him among the more liberal elements of the Democratic base. And they are the voters he can least afford to have stay home come Election Day.”

“Temper enthusiasm?” If Conway is “reluctant,” Bevin is pandering full-bore to the bigots of the Jesus-loves-me-but-He-can’t-stand-you persuasion over “the Kim Davis case” – “circus” is more accurate.

In any event, liberals are pretty practical, too, especially those in Red States like the Bluegrass State. That’s also true of those few of us who are left of liberal. We all understand realpolitik.

We are keenly aware that a vote for Curtis amounts to a vote for Bevin because it’s a vote Conway would have otherwise gotten. Curtis won’t fare well among us on Nov. 3.

If there is tempered enthusiasm among liberals, it’s likely to be transitory. The prospect of Bevin the tea party-tilting, John Birch Society-cozying reactionary moving into the governor’s mansion is by itself more than enough incentive to get liberals to the polls.

Meanwhile, I’ve yet to hear any Democrat declare, “Gee, I wish Drew Curtis headed up our party’s ticket.”