Beshear Administration Hasn’t Paid Legal Fees in Marriage Case Sunday, Nov 29 2015 

It’s unlikely that Gov. Steve Beshear’s administration will pay the legal fees of the attorneys who sued the state over its same-sex marriage ban by Dec. 8, when Governor-elect Matt Bevin takes office.

Attorneys who defeated the ban — in a case that was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court — say they should get about $2.1 million in compensation. Beshear’s administration says that amount is unreasonable, and the two parties have gone back and forth without reaching an agreement.

Dan Canon, one of the plaintiffs’ attorneys in the same-sex marriage lawsuit, said Beshear’s administration intends to “dump a problem they created on the incoming administration.”

“The Beshear administration created this problem by insisting upon litigating this case even after Attorney General [Jack] Conway called Kentucky’s laws what they are — discrimination,” Canon said in an email.

Conway declined to defend the same-sex marriage ban after it was struck down by a U.S. District Court in 2014, leading Beshear to hire Ashland law firm VanAntwerp Attorneys. That firm is on a $260,000 contract to defend the state against the suit.

“Instead of paying private lawyers with taxpayer dollars to continue fighting a battle that the administration has lost every step of the way, they have the ability to resolve this issue now,” Canon said.

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19260336181_e8c3ff1b6c_k_1024Kentucky Taxpayers Facing $2.3 Million Tab In Same-Sex Marriage Case

Plaintiffs’ attorneys from Michigan and Ohio, who challenged same-sex marriage bans their states to the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and eventually the Supreme Court alongside the Kentucky case, have already been compensated. Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder’s administration paid out $1.9 million in plaintiffs’ legal expenses. In Ohio, led by Gov. John Kasich, also a presidential candidate, the administration paid out $1.3 million.

Plaintiffs’ attorneys in Tennessee, who were also part of the case through the Sixth Circuit and Supreme Court, have requested $2.3 million, but no amount has been paid yet.

Beshear said the Kentucky plaintiffs’ fee request is unreasonable.

“Absent some agreement, the court will decide the fee amounts to be paid,” he said in an email. “While there have been some settlement discussions, no agreement has been reached.”

Beshear maintains that it was good to defend the state’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage so the nation’s high court could determine whether such laws are constitutional.

“At the time of the appeal, fractured laws and court decisions across the country concerning same-sex marriage had created an unsustainable and unbalanced legal environment, and there was the opportunity for legal chaos,” Beshear said. “Kentuckians — indeed all Americans — needed a clear and certain roadmap. The U.S. Supreme Court’s opinion this summer finally provided that clarity.”

Incoming Gov. Bevin’s administration did not respond to a request for comment.

In addition to Canon, the attorneys seeking compensation on the Kentucky case include Laura Landenwich, Joe Dunman, James Esseks, Chase Strangio, Joshua Block, Jeffrey L. Fisher, Dawn Elliott and Shannon Fauver.

The WEEK says Happy Thanksgiving Louisville KY! Thursday, Nov 26 2015 

Happy Turkey Day Louisvillians!

Here’s some news, and a podcast, and Paul Thorn’s ode to family as we remember that, you know, we’ve got it pretty good around here. There’s plenty of tidbits for you from Rusty Satellite alumni and local media folks:

Tom Owen

Tom Owen

Owen Rides Off: Metro Councilman Tom Owen told me it wouldn’t take him long to decide, and one week after his Rusty Satellite Show appearance the 76-year-old Louisville legend said he’s not up for another election, prompting a lot of Highlands residents to think about running. Happy Trails to Tom.

Janelle Chooses Family: WAVE-TV’s anchor Janelle MacDonald celebrated her last day at the station yesterday, getting a tearful send-off that included an on-air appearance by her fiancee Todd Earwood. MacDonald spent 11 years at WAVE. She’s getting married in December and says she’s not going back into TV.,

Jackey’s Back: Not the same can be said for Ben Jackey, who left his job as an 0n-air reporter at WLKY in 2010 for the better pay and working conditions of the PR world.  He chose a tumultuous JCPS communications office, where he spent five years as a spokesman before that office imploded. This week, he turned up on WLKY again, reporting on the new Louisville Bats logo design.

Matt Jones

Matt Jones

Jones Says No: Bummer. Matt Jones said this week he’s not running for Congress. I was kind of excited about all those right-wing Republicans considering casting a vote for the politically-liberal Jones. Back to basketball, says Jones, who didn’t want to miss another UK run at the NCAA title. The Cats are currently #1 in the polls.

I Don’t Have Time: Don’t use that excuse this Holiday season, or anytime. Call my guest on the Rusty show this week, Cathi Bingaman. She runs a personal and business concierge service called InSyncWithYou.

A Bowling We Will Go: The Louisville Cards are likely to be visiting El Paso for the Sun Bowl Dec. 26, sources tell me, regardless of how they come out in Lexington Saturday. For both UK and U of L, it’s been a mediocre, at best, season, so both are looking for something to salvage for 2015 at Commonwealth Stadium Saturday. I’m betting the Cards will cover the 4-point spread.  Meanwhile, the better game is in Bowling Green Friday at Noon, as Jeff Brohm’s Toppers take on Marshall. WKU is slated for the Miami Beach Bowl Dec. 21.


Ted Loebenberg

Coated for Good:  Go to your closet. Find a coat you haven’t worn in a year, and take it on Friday morning to one of the Free Coat Exchange locations around town. Ted Loebenberg’s Free Coat Exchange is now in its fifth year of getting coats to people who need them. Hear Ted on Rusty here.

And One More Good Deed: Check out this WDRB story about a program that provides shoes for folks fighting addiction at the Healing Place. That’s my doctor, George Quill, heading up a great program. You’ll find out more about my surgery and Dr. Quill’s good works next week on the Rusty Satellite Show.

I Don’t Like These People: Check out one of my absolute favorite Paul Thorn songs that’s a totally appropriate background tune for your Thanksgiving meal.


The post The WEEK says Happy Thanksgiving Louisville KY! appeared first on Louisville KY.

Incoming Auditor Calls For State Pension Director’s Resignation Wednesday, Nov 25 2015 

Incoming state Auditor Mike Harmon is calling for the resignation of the executive director of the state’s most under-performing pension system.

The Kentucky Retirement Systems Board of Trustees recently extended the contract of Executive Director Bill Thielen and gave him a 25 percent raise.

The pension fund covers 120,000 state employees and retirees in non-hazardous positions. It has only 19 percent of the money it needs to make future payouts.

Harmon said Thielen shouldn’t have taken the raise while the system is so underfunded.

“It’s just a bad example,” Harmon said, adding that the system needs a new leader to rebuild that “positive, ‘we can win’ type attitude.”

“It’s kind of like changing out a coach — sometimes it’s just a new direction. A lot of times it works. Sometimes it doesn’t,” said Harmon.

Harmon is currently a Republican state representative from Danville. Earlier this month, Harmon upset Democrat Adam Edelen’s re-election bid and will become state auditor on Jan. 4.

The KRS did not immediately return calls for comment on Wednesday.

Thielen became executive director of Kentucky Retirement Systems in August 2012 after serving as interim director. He had planned on retiring soon, but the KRS board extended his contract through June 2018 after trustees said they had trouble finding a replacement.

On Tuesday, Thielen’s salary will increase from $171,200 to $215,000.

The pay raise drew the ire of some legislators.

During a legislative hearing on Monday, Senate Majority Whip Jimmy Higdon, a Republican from Lebanon, publicly called for Thielen to step down.

“Because your hiring and accompanying large salary increase followed an executive search that was truncated at best, I’m requesting that you retire at the completion of the 2016 General Assembly session as you originally planned,” Higdon said, reading from a letter he sent to Thielen.

The 2016 legislative session ends in April.

KRS has been criticized for its secrecy in investments and costly fees awarded to fund managers. The system invests in so-called “alternative investments” at one of the highest rates among public pension systems. Those investments tend to be riskier and provide lower returns.

State Sen. Joe Bowen, a Republican from Owensboro, said he’ll file a bill in the upcoming legislative session that would require the legislature oversight of KRS’ contracts, including the agreement for Thielen’s raise and extended term.

During the meeting on Monday, Thielen predicted that next year the state’s annual contribution to the non-hazardous pension fund will need to be about $157.8 million more than it was this year.

Metro Councilman Tom Owen Won’t Seek Re-Election Wednesday, Nov 25 2015 

Metro Councilman Tom Owen announced Wednesday that he won’t be seeking re-election next year, ending a run of more than two decades representing the Highlands on Louisville’s legislative body.

Owen, a Democrat representing District 8, said he’s been mulling over possibly retiring for some time, but he decided to announce ahead of a filing deadline so anyone interested in running for the open seat on the council can prepare.

“It is something that I needed to do well in advance of the election year, because there will be talented younger people that need to mount a campaign, line up their friends before the filing date,” Owen said.

Owen, an archivist for the University of Louisville and local historian, said the Highlands has a history of providing energetic and progressive leadership in Louisville. He said he’s confident that will continue.

“I know there are qualified, able and capable progressive leaders that will step up and fill the post,” he said.

Owen was first elected to represent the Highlands area on the old City of Louisville Board of Aldermen in 1990. In 2012, he was among the first group of Metro Council members elected after city-county merger.

Owen noted that his departure isn’t imminent. He has 13 months left in the seat.

“I am going to be fully engaged in the council role for 13 months,” Owen said. “I will not be moving toward the periphery gracefully.”

The filing deadline to run for the seat is in January. So far, only one candidate, Democrat William Corey Nett, has filed to run in District 8.

Felon Voting Rights Issue in Kentucky Isn’t Completely Settled Wednesday, Nov 25 2015 

Michael Hiser started taking drugs when he was 8 and was only able to sober up while serving time for a felony.

While in prison, he decided he wanted to vote — an act prohibited for felons in Kentucky.

“Something just clicked that I needed to be civic-ly minded, that I was a part of this community,” he said. “And voting is a huge part of that.”

Hiser completed his parole for drug crimes in 2012 after a 25-year struggle with addiction. “And for me, not to have the ability to vote meant that I really wasn’t part of the community.”

Thanks to an executive order issued Tuesday by outgoing Gov. Steve Beshear, Hiser expects he’ll be able to cast ballots in upcoming elections.

Beshear’s executive order restoring voting rights to 180,000 non-violent felons in Kentucky was monumental for the years-long push for supporters of the issue. But the legislative battle over felon voting rights isn’t over.

The Democrat-led state House has repeatedly approved legislation to restore voting rights to non-violent felons. The Republican-led Senate has declined to send those bills to the governor, though in 2013 the Senate passed a bill that would restore voting rights after a five-year waiting period.

Fortified by incoming Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, GOP leaders from both legislative chambers called out Beshear’s order as an overreach of executive authority. Senate Majority Leader Damon Thayer, a Georgetown Republican, argued that while Beshear is allowed to issue individual pardons, he can’t do so to a whole class of individuals.

“I think that’s a really broad and incorrect interpretation of the law and constitution,” Thayer said.

A provision in Kentucky’s constitution strips felons of their voting rights, though the governor’s office also has the authority to restore those rights by executive pardon.

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Beshear Orders Voting Rights Restored For Non-Violent Kentucky Felons

Thayer said he’s going to urge Bevin “to closely review” Beshear’s executive order to see whether it is constitutional.

“Nobody’s taking a look at each individual case, which is normally what happens when someone requests to have their voting rights restored,” Thayer said, adding that voting rights should be granted only after a waiting period in order to incentivize good behavior.

Beshear’s order applies to those with felony convictions who didn’t commit violent crimes, sex crimes, bribery or treason, and don’t have any pending criminal charges. Once they complete their time behind bars, finish their probation or pay court-mandated restitution in full, their voting rights will be automatically restored.

Joshua Douglas, a law professor at the University of Kentucky, said Beshear’s executive order will likely pass legal muster.

“I don’t see anything in the Kentucky constitution that says the governor can’t do it wholesale as opposed to one by one,” Douglas said.

But even if Beshear’s order is legal, that doesn’t mean Bevin couldn’t rescind it. Douglas said the next question is whether those who get their voting rights restored could have them taken away again.

Probably not, he said.

“If someone takes advantage of this right now and gets an order from the Department of Corrections that their voting rights are restored, I don’t know that Matt Bevin could take that individual person’s voting rights away,” Douglas said.

After Beshear’s executive order, only Florida and Iowa have polices that permanently prohibit felons from voting.

State Rep. Darryl Owens, a Louisville Democrat, has been a leading proponent of restoring felon voting rights. On Tuesday, he said the legislature needs to tackle the felon voting rights issue and remove it from the “whims of the governor.”

House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover, a Jamestown Republican and a supporter of voting rights restoration, said the matter should be taken up by the General Assembly. He also questioned the validity of Beshear’s order.

“It should be the role of the legislature, not one person, which should address these issues through legislative debate,” Hoover said.

Governor-elect Bevin has voiced support for the restoration of voting rights for non-violent felons. On Tuesday, his spokeswoman said Bevin was reviewing Beshear’s order.

Hiser, a 45-year-old Bullitt County resident,  said he was already applying to have his voting rights restored.

“Up until this point, I’ve only been a citizen in transition; I’ve only been able to pay taxes,” he said. “To me, it’s taxation without representation.”

Louisville Ky Mayor Greg Fischer Invites city to Peace Vigil tonight Tuesday, Nov 24 2015 

Louisville, KY., – Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, Compassionate Louisville and several other groups are inviting all members of the community to gather tonight in Downtown Louisville to show their solidarity against all forms of terrorism, particularly to the recent violence in Paris and Beirut.

The vigil begins at 6 p.m. at the Jefferson Memorial across from City Hall at 6th and Jefferson streets.

The event is also sponsored by Pakistani Americans for Compassion and Education, MSA, and local Islamic centers.


compassionate louisville

The post Louisville Ky Mayor Greg Fischer Invites city to Peace Vigil tonight appeared first on Louisville KY.

Beshear Orders Voting Rights Restored For Non-Violent Kentucky Felons Tuesday, Nov 24 2015 

This story has been updated.

Gov. Steve Beshear will sign an executive order restoring voting rights to non-violent felons in Kentucky who have completed their sentences.

Beshear made the announcement Tuesday in Frankfort. The executive order excludes people convicted of bribery, sex crimes or treason, he said.

“The right to vote is one of the most intrinsically American privileges, and thousands of Kentuckians are living, working and paying taxes in the state but are denied this basic right,” said Beshear, a Democrat. “Once an individual has served his or her time and paid all restitution, society expects them to reintegrate into their communities and become law-abiding and productive citizens. A key part of that transition is the right to vote.”

Beshear said the executive order will make about 180,000 Kentuckians eligible to vote.

The felon voting rights issue has been considered in the the General Assembly in recent years but has failed to win passage.

State House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover was quick to criticize Beshear’s use of executive order to expand voting rights rather than working through the legislature.

“Once again this governor has chosen to usurp the authority of the Kentucky General Assembly through executive order,” said Hoover, who has supported legislation to extend voting rights to felons.

“It should be the role of the legislature, not one person, which should address these issues through legislative debate.”

Hoover, a Republican from Jamestown, said voting rights can only be done by amending the state constitution. He questioned the legality of the executive order.

During the press conference, Beshear dismissed the argument.

“The constitution gives Kentucky’s governor the authority to restore civil rights or to fully pardon an individual of crimes,” Beshear said.

Voting rights advocates said they still want the legislature to pass a felon voting rights bill so that future governors can’t issue a subsequent executive order rescinding Beshear’s policy.

Kentucky NAACP President Raoul Cunningham said he hopes the legislature will “honor” Beshear’s order.

“The first preference of course would be legislative action, but since the legislature has not acted, we’re very glad that Gov. Beshear decided to issue the executive order today to give some immediate relief to those who are affected,” Cunningham said.

“We’re still going to have to go before the legislature to try to make it permanent.”

State Rep. Darryl Owens, a Louisville Democrat who has sponsored the voting rights bill in recent years, said the legislature needs to pass the bill so Kentuckians “don’t suffer at the whims of the governor.”

“We always talk about redemption and then when somebody does something, we want to hang them for life,” Owens said.

During his campaign, Governor-elect Matt Bevin said he was supportive of restoring voting rights to non-violent felons. In a statement on Tuesday, Bevin’s spokeswoman said he would evaluate Beshear’s executive order during the transition period.

Non-violent felons who have served their time will be able to fill out a form and, once approved, have their voting rights restored. They’ll also be able to run for public office.

Those who are currently incarcerated or on parole will automatically receive a certificate saying that their rights are restored when they finish their time.
Beshear said the state shouldn’t deny civil rights to those who have paid for their crimes.

“It makes no sense because it dilutes the energy of democracy, which functions only if all classes and categories of people have a voice,” Beshear said

Felons will still be forbidden from owning a gun and serving on a jury.

Here’s the executive order:

ACLU Sues Indiana Gov. Pence For Blocking Syrian Refugees Tuesday, Nov 24 2015 

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is being sued for blocking Syrian refugees from resettling in Indiana.

The Indianapolis Star reports that the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed the lawsuit Monday night on behalf of Indianapolis-based nonprofit Exodus Refugee Immigration. It accuses Pence of violating the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act by accepting refugees from other countries but not from Syria.

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The lawsuit comes about a week after Pence objected to plans for refugees to arrive in Indiana following the deadly attacks in Paris. A family that fled war-torn Syria was diverted from Indianapolis to Connecticut on Nov. 18 when Pence ordered state agencies to halt resettlement activities.

Pence has said that he opposes the resettlement of Syrian refugees in his state until he can be assured that proper security measures are in place. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill last week calling for stricter security measures for Syrian refugees to enter the U.S.

An official from Pence’s office didn’t return the newspaper’s request for comment late Monday.

(Featured image via Gage Skidmore/Creative Commons)

Poll: 1 In 5 Americans Trusts The Government Monday, Nov 23 2015 

Only 19 percent of Americans — about 1 in 5 — say they trust the government “always or most of the time,” according to a study released by the Pew Research Center on Monday. Yet clear majorities also favor the government taking “a major role” in fighting terrorism, responding to natural disasters, keeping food and drugs safe, protecting the environment, strengthening the economy and improving education.

Despite this desire for government services, Americans are clearly dissatisfied with the level of service they feel they receive. Three out of four, 74 percent, say public officials put their own interests ahead of the nation’s. And a majority, 55 percent, say ordinary Americans would “do a better job of solving problems” than the people whose job it is to do so.

Trust in government appears to have been higher half a century ago, at a time when the Cold War may have had more of a rallying effect on public opinion — along with the space program and high employment and general prosperity. A similar survey in 1964 found 77 percent of Americans trusted the government either always or most of the time.

Confidence in government has clearly suffered over the ensuing decades, with Vietnam, Watergate, energy crises, various economic troubles, partisan gridlock in Washington and the recent frustrations in Iraq and Afghanistan. And that is not to mention the myriad stories of administrative breakdowns, personnel problems and computer hacking.

The trust level generally trended downward after the mid-1960s in the National Election Study, and in polls by Gallup, the New York Times and other news organizations, descending below 30 percent for the first time in the late 1970s. The trust level percentage rose into the 40s at times during the middle part of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, declined through most of George H.W. Bush’s presidency and fell all the way to 20 percent during the second year of Bill Clinton’s time in the White House. Thereafter, however, an improving economy helped the trust level recover again.

After the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the trust level briefly got over 50 percent again. But it fell rapidly thereafter through the George W. Bush years and slipped below 20 percent during the presidency of Barack Obama. In 2011, the moving average of major polls including the Pew Research Poll showed trust at just 17 percent.

People trust their own parties more

In general, trust levels among Democrats have been higher when Democrats are in the White House, while Republicans have expressed more trust when Republicans were president. Four out of 5 Republicans (and Republican-leaning independents) told Pew they prefer a smaller government with fewer services, while only 3 out of 10 said so among Democrats and Democratic leaners.

The Pew report is based on more than 6,000 interviews conducted in all 50 states between Aug. 27 and Oct. 4, 2015. That is a highly unusual sample in its size, which is five to 10 times larger than most of the polls often cited in the media. The Pew research also includes interviews done by cellphone, reaching a wider range of people than surveys done by landline phone or via the Internet.

More Republicans than Democrats say they’re angry with the government

Republicans are nearly three times as likely as Democrats to say they are angry with the government — 32 percent vs. 12 percent. Among those who say they vote frequently and follow politics on a regular basis, the gap widens — 42 percent to 11 percent. GOP presidential candidates Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Ben Carson get higher favorable ratings among Republicans who say they are angry at government than they do among other Republicans.

What is more surprising is that the parties are much less divided on the desire for government to play a major role in providing various forms of security, roads and bridges, safety and disaster response. Four in 5 in both parties said the government should have a major role in managing immigration. Here are more findings from the survey:

Spending limits: Big majorities in both parties said they favored some kind of spending limits in U.S. elections. Among those who called themselves conservative Republicans or Republican leaners, 68 percent supported the idea of limiting how much individuals and organizations can spend.

Safety nets: On issues of the social safety net, however, the partisan divide reappears. Some 72 percent of the Democrats and their leaners saw a major role for the government in lifting people out of poverty; only about a third of Republicans did. The same gap appeared on the question of government ensuring access to quality health care.

Government reform: The survey found almost 60 percent of Americans think their government needs “major reform,” a sharp increase from the late 1990s, when less than 40 percent of those surveyed said so.

Natural disasters: Government got its best marks in the latest Pew data for its performance on natural disasters, and setting fair and safe standards in workplaces. About half the respondents in each party said the federal government did a good job on roads and on ensuring access to high-quality education.

Government agencies: Individual government agencies also sometimes did better than one might expect. More than 80 percent of respondents were positive about the performance of the U.S. Postal Service. But just 39 percent have a favorable opinion of the scandal-plagued Department of Veterans Affairs, which had almost a 70 percent positive rating in 2013.

Although the Pew study was focused on the federal government, it also found a majority, 56 percent, saying that large corporations have a negative impact on the country. A similar majority said the entertainment industry has a negative impact, and almost two-thirds, 65 percent, said the same thing about the national news media.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

Transcript :


We have fresh evidence this morning that Americans continue to lack trust in their government. The evidence comes from a trusted source, the Pew Research Center, which released a poll showing that only 19 percent of Americans trust the government either always or most of the time – 19 percent. Yet big majorities also say they want the government to play a major role in national security, disaster relief, safety, education, the environment and the economy. They want the government to act. They just don’t trust the government to do it. NPR Washington editor Ron Elving has been studying this survey. Ron, good morning.

RON ELVING, BYLINE: Good morning, Steve.

INSKEEP: What do you make of this?

ELVING: This is a Pew Research Center poll. That’s one of the very best, most scientific and broad-based measures of opinion we have. And it shows a trend that’s been continuing more or less for the last half-century but particularly in recent years. In this particular survey, more than 6,000 interviews in all 50 states over five weeks, ending October 4.

INSKEEP: Which is a much bigger sample size than a lot of surveys. Let me ask though, that 19 percent trust level, is that focusing just on the federal government, or does it also include state and local governments?

ELVING: The main focus is on the federal government, although there is a broader sense of disaffection that also would touch the state and local governments. People are also, I should say, down on career politicians and the major parties and the role of money in elections. And I must add, Steve, two-thirds of the respondents said that the news media in America are having a negative effect.

INSKEEP: I’m shocked – shocked – to hear that, Ron Elving. Let me just mention, though…

ELVING: So we don’t do so well either…

INSKEEP: Well, exactly, exactly – but let me just mention, you know, it is a democracy. We’re not entirely supposed to trust our government. Is 19 percent trust especially low?

ELVING: It’s low compared to the high back in the early ’60s, and I stress the early ’60s – 1964 we hit a high of 77 percent in a comparable poll. Seventy-seven percent said they did have trust in government to always or most of the time do the right thing. The lowest we’ve ever gone is not too far below where we are right now – 17 percent was the low in 2010.

INSKEEP: What was so – what was different in the 1960s?

ELVING: Well, you know, you still had the Cold War going on. There was a lot of loyalty to the United States of America over, say, our communist adversaries. The Vietnam War was just beginning to enter the public consciousness. People hadn’t gotten disillusioned about that war yet. And we still had a very positive element of the space program and the civil rights movement was in flower at that time. We had full employment and prosperity – probably Americans were richer right then than they’d ever been before and arguably better off than they are now.

INSKEEP: Oh, wow, so let me just ask you though, we have this situation with a 19 percent approval rating. Is it different – or not approval rating, trust in government rating – is that different if you’re a Republican or a Democrat?

ELVING: It is different, although there is not a great a difference between the parties when you talk about wanting government to do certain things, agreed upon things. But when you talk about people who are angry at the government, Republicans and conservatives are three times more likely to say they’re angry than people on the other side of the spectrum.

INSKEEP: But people still want the government to do stuff?

ELVING: They do. They seem to like the idea of government services, even federal government services. They do not like the level of service that they feel they get. They do want the federal government to manage immigration, not the states. They do want the government to do something to strengthen the economy, protect the environment, even improve education.

INSKEEP: OK, so how can they demand that much of the government but they don’t trust the government to deliver?

ELVING: You know, there may be something in this word trust, Steve. It’s built into the question going back six decades. But when you ask Americans that question now, it sounds a little different. It strains the contemporary American personality to say that any one of us really trusts the government always or most of the time. It’s asking too much in the skeptical age. And we are just seeing too many stories about, say, the Veterans Administration hospitals or the Secret Service or pick your agency.


ELVING: And also, there’s a lot of feeling that the government is just overwhelmed at times. Maybe…


ELVING: …wrongheaded in its policy.

INSKEEP: Ron, thanks very much.

ELVING: Thank you, Steve.

INSKEEP: I trust you. That’s NPR’s Ron Elving. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Kentucky Sports Radio’s Matt Jones Won’t Run For Office In 2016 Monday, Nov 23 2015 

Saying he’s unwilling to give up his sports commentary gig just yet, Kentucky Sports Radio founder Matt Jones announced Monday he won’t run for political office in 2016.

Jones, a Democrat, spent much of the summer and fall entertaining the possibility of running for Congress in Kentucky’s 6th District, which includes Lexington. Rep. Andy Barr, a Republican, currently holds the seat.

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And Jones recently told WFPL News that he hadn’t ruled out a run for Sen. Rand Paul’s seat.

“I am extremely proud of what we have built here at KSR and the amazing opportunity I get to have as a part of it daily,” Jones wrote in a piece published Monday on the Kentucky Sports Radio blog. “Every day I get a chance to get up, work with friends I love and try to entertain thousands of people about a topic we all share. The reality is that as of now, I cannot say I am ready to completely give it up.”

Though known best for his Kentucky Wildcats-centric blog and radio show, Jones has recently hosted political candidates, debates and officeholders. He also hosted the political speeches during this summer’s Fancy Farm Picnic, the traditional kickoff of Kentucky’s general election season.

On Monday, Jones wrote that he had discussed the possibility of a political bid with family, friends and people involved in politics. He said he believed he could win a political race but was unwilling to give up his Kentucky Sports Radio gig.

Jones, who is also an attorney, said it’s “likely” he’ll run for political office in a later election.

He also used his announcement to take a dig at Louisville Cardinals basketball coach Rick Pitino.

“I have too much love for my current job to completely step away, so I know my heart is not ready to shift gears entirely as running a successful campaign would demand,” Jones wrote. “Rick Pitino left UK’s Camelot early in 1997 and ended up finding himself the coach at UL. I would hate to make the same mistake and find a similar fate.”

Featured image by J. Tyler Franklin

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