Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Yarmuth Crushing Wicker in Fundraising Totals

The latest fundraising reports from the Federal Election Commission show Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth with an immense lead over Republican challenger Brooks Wicker in Kentucky’s Third Congressional District race.

Seeking a fourth term, Yarmuth raised over $80,000 in contributions during the first three months of the year and has more than $432,000 in cash on-hand. The incumbent does have a primary opponent in perennial candidate Burrel Farnsley, but he hasn’t raised any money.

Wicker, who is a Louisville accountant, raised a mere $3,000 during the first quarter, and $2,329 of that came from his own pocket. The fundraising canyon is wider when their coffers are taken into account.

The GOP challenger is unopposed in his primary, but has only $634 in campaign cash, which means Yarmuth has a 681-to-1 advantage.

The Wicker campaign could not be reached for comment.

Local News

Kentucky Gov. Office: Mongiardo Endorsement Legal

From Kentucky Public Radio’s Tony McVeigh

Did a recent political endorsement issued by Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear violate state and federal campaign laws? Page One, a political blog in Louisville, says it did, but the governor’s office disagrees.

Last Friday, Governor Steve Beshear endorsed Lt. Governor Dan Mongiardo’s Democratic campaign for the U-S Senate seat currently held by Republican Jim Bunning. But the endorsement was issued through state email on official letterhead.

Beshear spokesman Jay Blanton sees nothing wrong with that. “The governor’s office has been asked the question several times about his stance on that race and that question is asked in his capacity as governor. And he was responding in his capacity as governor,” Blanton said.

The Kentucky Registry of Election Finance referred Kentucky Public Radio to the Federal Election Commission, which sees no violation of federal campaign laws. The attorney general’s office says use of state letterhead may raise ethical questions, but that’s a matter for the Executive Branch Ethics Commission, which has received no complaints.