As the gubernatorial election results came out of Kentucky Tuesday night, there were cheers of gladness from the left, claiming that the deep red state had been turned blue. This is far from the truth. Yes, by .4 points, the Democrats seem to have taken the governor’s mansion. But the rest of the elections in the state show that Kentucky is STILL a very red state.
In fact, even the governor’s race was not a sure sign, but we will get to that momentarily.
First, let’s look at the rest of the statewide elections.
There were five other statewide elections in Kentucky on Tuesday, and here are the results:
- Attorney General: Republican +15.5
- Agriculture Commissioner: Republican +19.6
- Auditor: Republican + 14.6
- Secretary of State: Republican +4.4
- Treasurer: Republican +21.4
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No, I hate to break the news to you, leftists, that is not the results that you find in a blue state. In fact, those numbers show that Kentucky is not even close to becoming a blue state.
As my friend at PJ Media, Matt Margolis, so aptly states:
Let me just get it out of the way right now and tell you that Kentucky isn’t turning blue. The state hasn’t been “flipped” or whatever else they’re saying.
We’ve seen this narrative before. When Democrat Doug Jones narrowly defeated Republican Roy Moore in the special election for Jeff Sessions’ vacant Senate seat in 2017, many on the left seemed to interpret that election as a sign of Trump’s weakness, and Alabama’s competitiveness in future statewide elections.
Yet, no one deluded themselves into thinking that Massachusetts was becoming a red state when Charlie Baker flipped the governorship from Democrat to Republican in 2014. No one believes that Massachusetts might turn red in 2020, even though Charlie Baker is the most popular governor in the country—and has been for some time.
Now while I agree with Matt on his opinion piece, and I would encourage you to read the whole article here, I believe there is an elephant in the room that he misses in the Bevin loss. Toll roads!
I would say, easily, what cost incumbent Republican Matt Bevin his razor-thin loss by Democrat Andy Beshear was his support of toll roads, which is a HUGE issue among the Republican base.
Bevin made his position very clear during the election that his position from 2015 had changed and that he believed that tolling would be necessary on a new Brent Spence Bridge massive bridge replacement project in Northern Kentucky.
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“There is no way around having some type of tolling on a bridge of this size,” the governor said.
Toll Roads have become a very touchy subject among conservatives. The Lexington Herald-Leader even asked, one week before Kentuckians went to the polls: Bevin gets backlash on tolling stance. Will it change votes in Northern Kentucky?
It wasn’t the first time Bevin had said he supports tolling. He had made similar comments to business groups in Northern Kentucky after a study he commissioned said tolling was necessary, but his televised comment Tuesday stoked a hot political fire in the region.
“It’s a big deal for a very small subset of people,” said Rep. Adam Koenig, R-Erlanger. “If you work in Cincinnati, you don’t typically want to pay for that privilege.”
After hearing the governor supported tolls, a former Covington City Council member, Steven Frank, said on Facebook that he wouldn’t be able to vote for Bevin. Later, Eric Deters, a notorious figure in Northern Kentucky who is a Trump supporter, said he couldn’t support Bevin in part because of the governor’s answer on tolling.
Bevin was a VERY unpopular governor, polling in the low 30’s It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out why. But, let it be clear, Kentucky is FAR from being a blue state.
I could not agree with Matt Margolis any more:
“But hey, if Democrats want to see Kentucky as a blue state and invest all sorts of money and resources there next year, by all means, they can. In fact, I encourage it.”