Copley/Hendren on Weekend Events, Passing of Ann Tower

Nov 11, 2016

It’s time for our weekly chat featuring weekend arts and cultural events with Rich Copley and Harriett Hendren of the Lexington Herald-Leader.

They start this week of a mention of this weekend’s concert by the Real World String Band.

Coal Interests Counting on Trump

Nov 10, 2016

Thousands of Eastern Kentucky voters are counting on Donald Trump to help bring coal jobs back to the region.  Those same voters want to see changes in the nation's energy policies.

A public health alert has been issued for a number of counties in Southeastern Kentucky.  It comes following ongoing wildland fires in the region.

The smoke inhalation advisory affects residents living in some nine counties.  Air quality tests this week indicated hazardous readings with significant health risks for the general public in some areas of Breathitt, Laurel, and Whitley counties.

Republicans running for the state legislature registered many wins in Tuesday’s election.  The victories put the GOP in solid control of both houses of the General Assembly.

Republicans needed to take four seats in the state House to get majority control.  By night's end, GOP candidates had secured well over a dozen new seats in the 100 member chamber. 

Stu Johnson

Democrat Jim Gray fell short in his bid to upend incumbent GOP U.S. Senator Rand Paul.  But, the two-term Lexington mayor said Tuesday night he felt good about his showing in the statewide race. 

Rand Paul pulled in about 57 percent of the vote as he retained his Senate seat.  Considering how well the Republican presidential candidate did in the Commonwealth, Jim Gray felt his campaign fared well.  “What the margin shows is that we did really respectable considering how well in the presidential race Donald Trump did,” noted Gray.

Stu Johnson

Central Kentucky pastor Nancy Jo Kemper feels good about the congressional campaign she waged in a losing effort.  The first-time Democratic candidate believes Andy Barr’s campaign funding was too much to overcome.

Andy Barr, the GOP incumbent in the Sixth District, garnered just over 60 percent of the vote in the 19-county region.  Kemper, who’s been active in a variety of political debates in Frankfort, felt good about her showing, “I believe that it was an honest decent campaign that tried to evoke civility and to listen to all the people of the sixth district."

Coal's Role in Kentucky Elections

Nov 8, 2016
Washington Post

As Ohio Valley ReSource's Jeff Young reports, support for the ailing coal industry motivated voters in key races across the Ohio Valley region. 

Key races across Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia went to candidates who showed strong support for coal.

Election Day 2016: 'Ad it Up'

Nov 8, 2016
Ohio Valley Resource

If it seems like your TV time has been carpet-bombed with campaign ads, some data shows that you’re right.

Jeff Young reports that parts of the Ohio Valley region stand out in analysis of big campaign spending and high volume TV spots.

General Election Updates

Nov 8, 2016
National Public Radio



WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Election Day 2016 (all times EST)

117,771 of 171,332 precincts - 69 percent

Donald Trump, GOP 48,147,815 - 49 percent

Hillary Clinton, Dem 46,522,774 - 47 percent

Gary Johnson, Lib 3,123,045 - 3 percent

Election Updates

Nov 8, 2016
Kentucky Secretary of State's Office

Click through post to click through to:

WKYT Election Coverage



In the 435 U.S. House races, the Republicans have won 172 seats

and are leading in the races for 49 seats. The Democrats have won 116

seats and are leading in the races for 20 seats. Independent and other

party candidates have won or are leading for 0 seats. If these trends

Stu Johnson

County clerks across Kentucky are expected to have a busy day Tuesday as citizens cast their ballots for president, congress, the state General Assembly, local governments, and school boards.   Election officials in Richmond, Lexington, and Hazard don’t anticipate any major problems.

Fayette County Clerk Don Blevins says heavy voter turnouts are typical for presidential elections. He’s expecting as many as 75 percent of registered voters in the Lexington area.  Officials in Hazard and Richmond expect about 60 percent.

Stu Johnson

With Election Day finally upon us, it doesn’t take much prodding to get commentary about the presidential race.  That includes those with roots in other nations.

Nana Turkson operates the African and Carribean Market in Lexington’s Eastland Shopping Center.  She has lived in the U.S. for over a decade.  Turkson expects to become a citizen next year. 

EKU Prof Assesses Voters’ Thought Process

Nov 7, 2016

After a long campaign season, Kentucky voters will make their political choices Tuesday. Making their decisions on specific issues like education, health care, defense, social security, and others can be a challenge for some voters. 

Eastern Kentucky University Psychology Professor Matthew Winslow says it’s often all the other information about candidates, especially in this presidential race, that gets a lot of attention. 

Jeff Young/Ohio Valley ReSource

The opioid epidemic is on the agenda for political campaigns from the presidential race down to the local level in the Ohio Valley region. Election Day could shape the response to the crisis in states with some of the nation’s highest rates of addiction and overdoses.

Marisa Hempel

A few weeks ago, we had a panel of reporters gives us a preview of this year’s election.  This week, they’ll be back for a post-election reporter’s roundtable.

After the dust of the 2016 election settles, we will discuss the results with the journalists and get feedback from listeners.

Progress is being made in fighting wildland fires in southeastern Kentucky.  As of late Sunday, there were 21 fires burning in nine Kentucky counties. 

Division of Forestry Spokesman Mark Wiedewitsch says, over the last several days, there have been as many as 30 fires.  He expects about 400 firefighters to be working the fires Monday. 

Wiedewitsch says that's a substantial number of people trying to contain the fires, "The state is handling it now with as much of the resource we have available at our fingertips."

Today, Tom Martin talks with Lonny White, chief operations officer at Piramal Pharma Solutions Incorporated-Lexington, formally known as Coldstream Laboratories. The company, part of an international conglomerate, provides sterile drug product development and manufacturing services.

Politics and the election have certainly brought out some comments this week. First, from Mary Pat who commented about the Eastern Standard show on voter values, “The election?...values?...partisan spokespersons to start it off? ....really?!  I had to turn it off. A very lame show with poor conception.”

Despite over 200 firefighters battling wildland fires in some eight Kentucky counties, the effort is expected to continue into next week.

State Division of Forestry Spokesman Mark Wiedewitsch says large fires in Pike County and the Pine Mountain area are contained.  But, he worries sun and wind could result in more new fires today.  Wiedewitsch says overnight rains helped only so much, “It really wasn’t enough.  To really make a dent in it, we really need a good inch or more.”

Lexington city leaders are exploring establishing a youth mentoring program within local government.  It would allow employees paid time to meet with those they are advising.

Copley/Hendren on Weekend Events Including Book Fair

Nov 4, 2016

It’s time for our weekly chat featuring weekend arts and cultural events with Rich Copley and Harriett Hendren of the Lexington Herald-Leader.  On their minds this week are a variety of events, concerts, exhibits and the Kentucky Book Fair.

Ongoing woodland fires across Kentucky are prompting Governor Bevin to declare a statewide emergency.  It means local officials can request state resources in their firefighting efforts.

State forestry officials report more than three dozen wildland fires have burned 3800 acres so far. 

J. Tyler Franklin / WFPL

Donald Trump will likely win big in Kentucky on November 8.

The FiveThirtyEight poll aggregator predicts the Republican nominee has a 99.6 percent chance of winning Kentucky’s eight electoral votes.

But what’s still unclear is how his popularity will affect the down ballot, especially in races for the hotly-contested state House of Representatives. Republicans are trying to win a majority in that chamber for the first time in nearly a century.

Face of State Capitol Getting a Makeover

Nov 3, 2016
Stu Johnson

It’s been nearly a half century since the Frankfort home of Kentucky's government got the kind of attention it’s getting this fall as power washing crews tackle the front of the Capitol Building. 

Project Manager Bernie Engelman says this type of thorough cleaning and mortar joint work hasn’t been done for 40 to 50 years. 

He says it’s needed to help protect against weather-related damage,  “If water were to get into the cracks or into the mortar joints, and start getting in there, it could freeze and thaw and pop parts of the limestone off.”

Stu Johnson

More than two dozen Lexington residents chose to experience for one day what being homeless is like.  Included in that group was Lexington Council Member Susan Lamb.

During the noon hour Wednesday Lamb was at Lighthouse Ministries where well over a hundred homeless and low income citizens got lunch.  Lamb participated in the 24-hour “Give Kids a Home” homeless experience and fundraiser.  She slept on the ground downtown and met many homeless people.

Wildland fires in southeastern Kentucky forests involving thousands of acres are keeping firefighters busy this week.  The situation is complicated by the fact that inadequate rainfall is expected to help douse the fires.

State Division of Forestry Assistant Fire Chief Mike Harp says crews are working about twice as many fires compared to this time last year.  Woodland fires in sections of Pine Mountain and Letcher County exceed 1000 acres. 

Kentucky Secretary of State's Office

Kentucky's top election official estimates 60 percent of the state's registered voters will cast ballots on Tuesday.  Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes said that's on par with the turnout from the 2012 presidential election.

As he campaigns for a second term in the U.S. House, Lexington Republican Representative Andy Barr is seeking to continue an involvement in politics that stretches back into the 1990’s.  

While in college, he served as an intern for Senator Mitch McConnell. He later worked in former Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher’s administration and was first elected to represent Kentucky’s 6th congressional district in 2012.  As he seeks a third two-year term, Barr is being opposed by Democrat Nancy Jo Kemper.

Nancy Jo Kemper has weighed in political issues much of her adult life.  But, her civic activities took a different turn last January when she filed as a Democratic candidate in the Sixth congressional district.  The pastor of nearly 50 years, who’s spoken out on issues like health care and tax reform, abolition of the death penalty, environmental stewardship, and gambling expansion is seeking to unseat Republican Andy Barr. 

Kemper returned to Frankfort last Thursday for the annual Democrats “get out the vote” picnic.

Lexington Pilot Project Focuses on Park Cameras

Nov 2, 2016

Members of a Lexington Council committee are suggesting a pilot camera program for a neighborhood park.

General Government and Social Services Committee members voted 8 to 1 to spend $30,000 for four high resolution cameras to be located in Berry Hill Park on Lexington's South Side.  They are being proposed as a tool to help ensure a safer park environment.