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Heiner Falls Short In Mayoral Bid

By Sheila Ash

Hal Heiner was seeking to become the first Republican to hold the Louisville mayor’s office in more than 30 years, but lost to Democratic opponent Greg Fischer in a narrow race.

Heiner encouraged his supporters to work together on issues they share with Democrats.

“We all care about people being employed in this community. We all care about the best education for our children. And we all care about improving neighborhoods at every corner of our city. Let’s begin with our common ground then united and move ahead,” he said.

Heiner said he called Fischer to congratulate him on his victory and wished him the best over the next four years.

Heiner, who has served on the Metro Council for seven years, says he plans to continue working to move the city forward.

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Vote Buying Complaints Investigated

Officials say the election fraud hotline was ringing off the hook on Election Day, with allegaions of vote-buying among the calls.

At least 11 calls to the voter fraud hotline involved alleged vote buying. Most were about procedural questions, voting machine problems and electioneering too close to the polls. Shelley Johnson with the attorney general’s office says the Office of Special Prosecutions will process and review every complaint.

“And when necessary they’ll refer that complaint for investigation to the appropriate agency. That would include Kentucky State Police, Kentucky Board of Elections, U.S. Attorney’s office, FBI, as well as local police and prosecutors,” she said.

Johnson says the voter fraud hotline operates year-round, not just on Election Day, so if you’re still concerned about something you witnessed Tuesday, call 1-800-328-VOTE.

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JCPS Board Incumbents Hold Off Challengers

The two Jefferson County Board of Education incumbents who faced opposition Tuesday have won re-election.

Board Chairwoman Debbie Wesslund, who represents the 3rd District, defeated two opponents to win another term.

District 1 incumbent Diane Porter, who was appointed to the post this year to succeed the retiring Ann Elmore, defeated three opponents.

Wesslund captured 62 percent of the vote; Porter received 58 percent. Board members Linda Duncan and Carol Haddad were unopposed in the election.

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Yarmuth Wins Third Term In Congress

By Sheila Ash

Democrat John Yarmuth will keep his Third District Congressional seat with Tuesday’s win over Republican challenger Todd Lally.

In his concession speech, Lally told supporters that they may have lost this race, but they haven’t lost the war.

“All across America as the polls close Republicans are going to close in on that magical number of 39. Tonight Nancy Pelosi will retire,” he said.

Lally says he called Yarmuth and thanked him for not giving in to negative campaigning. He also told supporters that he will run for office again at some point in the future.

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Paul Defeats Conway In Senate Race

Republican Rand Paul has ridden Tea Party support and strong criticism of President
Barack Obama to victory in Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race.

Paul defeated Democrat Jack Conway in Tuesday’s election.

Paul, a Bowling Green eye doctor and son of Libertarian Congressman Ron Paul, went on the attack during the campaign against the federal health care overhaul, stimulus plans and the budget deficit, repeating his call for smaller government during his victory speech.

“Thomas Jefferson wrote that ‘government is best that governs least; likewise freedom is best when enjoyed by the most'” he said.

A disappointed Conway told reporters he’ll get right back to work at the Capitol this week.

“I have the opportunity to run for re-election as attorney general. I’ll be back in the office, doing some of the stuff i love in the office of attorney general,” Conway said after his concession speech.

Conway said he doesn’t regret airing a controversial ad late in the campaign that drew criticism from both ends of the political spectrum.

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No Major Voting Problems Reported

It’s Election Day in Kentucky and voters are steadily streaming to the polls. Les Fugate of the Secretary of State’s office says, so far, there have been few glitches reported around the state.

“Overall, we’ve had a couple of voting machines that were either not able to open right on time or temporarily went down during the middle of the day – nothing longer than about 45 minutes, from what we can tell, in terms of voters being inconvenienced.”

Fugate says turnout, as expected, is strongest in Louisville and Lexington. Secretary of State Trey Grayson is predicting voter turnout statewide will be around 48 percent. The polls remain open until 6:00 pm, local time.

Voter turnout appears to be mixed across Indiana.

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Voters Head To The Polls

The polls are open across Kentucky and Indiana, as voters cast ballots for local, state
and federal offices.

No major problems have been reported thus far at polling locations.

The Kentucky Secretary of State’s office is predicting turnout of just under 50 percent across the commonwealth, with higher numbers expected in Louisville and Lexington, where there are hotly contested races for mayor.

Kentucky and Indiana voters are casting ballots in U.S. Senate races, and both states have contested races for all of their U.S. House seats, some of which are being closely watched nationally.

Polls will be open until 6pm local time.

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Paul, Conway Campaign Heavily On Election Eve

Republican U.S. Senate Candidate Rand Paul took to the skies to campaign Monday, flying to a total of eight cities around Kentucky.

He told supporters at Louisville’s Bowman Field that lawmakers need more discipline in the budget process.

“I think we need an iron clad balanced budget amendment that says you have to balance a budget. If we had that we would force them to be better legislators. And I’m not talking about just Democrats. I’m talking about Republicans and Democrats need to be better legislators. We force them to be better legislators by having rules that they must obey,” he said.

Paul (pictured speaking with reporters) says when he first decided to run for office he only had about a 10 percent chance of winning and now feels his odds are better than even. Recent polling has given Paul a sizable lead in his race against Jack Conway.

Former President Bill Clinton is campaigning for Conway at the University of Louisville. Conway has also been greeting supporters across the state.

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Grayson: Election Officials Prepared For Tuesday’s Balloting

Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson expects a smooth Election Day. He says state and local election officials are ready, and he anticipates few, if any, hitches. Grayson reminds voters no electioneering is allowed within 300 feet of the polls.

“Part of the reason for that buffer zone is to provide those protections from harassing and intimidating behaviors for those voters. So, for example, you wouldn’t have within 300 feet of the polling place two candidates having a rally inside that zone. And if they’re away from 300 feet, that’ll protect the voters,” he said.

Grayson discourages voters from wearing candidate T-shirts inside the polls. He says you won’t be denied your right to vote, but you still may be prosecuted for violating state electioneering laws. Polls open at 6:00 a.m. local time and close at 6 p.m.

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GOP Eyeing Indiana State House Takeover

Indiana voters will cast ballots in numerous state legislative races Tuesday.

Republicans have their eye on regaining control of the Indiana House.

Democrats hold a 52-48 majority in the House. Republican Governor Mitch Daniels has been leading the charge for a GOP takeover; his political action committee has been spending heavily on Republican candidates.

Republicans hold a 33-17 majority in the state Senate.

Among the races on the ballot in southern Indiana:

Republican Rhonda Rhodes faces Democratic incumbent Paul Robertson in the 70th House district.

Democrat Ryan Bower and Republican Steve Davisson are vying for the 73th District House seat vacated by Democrat Dennie Oxley, Senior because of illness.

Democratic incumbent Russ Stillwell is being challenged by Republican Sue Ellsperman in House District 74.

And Republican Ron Grooms and Democrat Chuck Frieberger are on the ballot for the 46th District state Senate seat left vacant by the retirement of Democrat Connie Sipes.