Ronnie Ellis Has Some Troubling Stats

Cross over the old Louisville & Nashville Railroad in this town remembered for its Civil War encampment and you’ll see the first signs — there’s fresh anticipation in the rural areas that will be prime viewing locations for the first coast-to-coast total solar eclipse to sweep the United States in 99 years. [H-L]

Americans largely do not approve of the GOP Senate health care bill, and many of them are dissatisfied with the way Republicans in Congress are handling the matter, according to a new NPR/“PBS NewsHour”/Marist poll. [HuffPo]

As University of Louisville Hospital prepares to separate from KentuckyOne Health this weekend, leaders are optimistic about the hospital’s future. [C-J/AKN]

Just in case you thought Mitch McConnell wanted to have substantive discussion about health care? You’re dangerously mistaken. [The Hill]

The Russell City Council on Monday gave final passage to the city’s new budget, which will include a 2.1 percent pay raise to all employees and council members. [Ashland Independent]

U.S. Senate Republican leaders postponed a vote on a healthcare overhaul on Tuesday after resistance from members of their own party, and President Donald Trump summoned Republican senators to the White House to urge them to break the impasse. [Reuters]

Deaths from drug overdoses continue to grow in Kentucky and, according to one foot-soldier on the front lines of the drug epidemic, that’s having a perverse and surreal effect. [Ronnie Ellis]

Mitch McConnell is a coward and you’ve known that for years. This is merely a reminder. Activists in wheelchairs protesting the Senate’s newly-released health care bill were arrested and dragged from outside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office on Thursday. [ThinkProgress]

The eight members of the Glasgow City Council who were present at Monday’s regular meeting and others in attendance, got to see a glimpse of the next few years at the Glasgow Municipal Airport – if things go according to plan. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Federal investigators are examining financial transactions involving Paul Manafort and his son-in-law, who embarked on a series of real estate deals in recent years fueled by millions of dollars from Mr. Manafort, according to two people familiar with the matter. [NY Times]

At the Gateway Coalition for Workforce Diversity meeting held Friday, Jason Slone spoke about the need for the coalition to work directly with business leaders in the community. [The Morehead News]

Every time President Trump tweets, journalists and Twitter followers attempt to analyze what he means. Intelligence agencies around the world do, too: They’re trying to determine what vulnerabilities the president of the United States may have. And he’s giving them a lot to work with. [WaPo]

A former Pike Deputy Judge-Executive who has been convicted in two previous animal cruelty cases is again facing charges, after Pike County Animal Control officers filed 100 misdemeanor cruelty to animals charges against him related to the finding of numerous animals at his residence, many of which were sick and some of which were dead. [H-L]

When news spread in Wayne County, Georgia, that Republic Services planned to dump toxic coal ash in their landfill, citizens and the local newspaper fought back. [HuffPo]

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Even The Gays Can Be Insufferably Dumb

Jim Gray is still an idiot, apparently. He spent most of his life hating himself and denying his sexual orientation. You’d think that’d be enough to make someone want to do everything they can to improve the lives of everyone, not just a few rich folks in the Golden Triangle. Now he’s trying to behave as if it’s okay to ignore the rest of Kentucky’s 120 counties when it comes to homophobia. Rather than begging for California to allow travel to Louisville and Lexington, maybe this tired old queen (I can say it because I’m as gay and put my money where my mouth is) could put his money where his mouth is for once and fight Matt Bevin and the Republican bigotry that’s taken over Frankfort. He won’t, though, because he’d sell his fellow gays out in a heartbeat if it meant having to deal with the tiniest bit of inconvenience or embarrassment. He’s done it so frequently that his own relatives complain to me about it. Fuck Jim Gray and the rest of these tired old codgers too focused on their own self interest to stand up for the rest of the Commonwealth. They can’t retire and leave public life quickly enough. Signed, a big ole homo who knows Kentuckians are cool with rebellion and would love Jim Gray if he wasn’t a big baby. P.S. It’s okay for you to call his ass out for being dumb. It won’t make you a homophobe unless you’re, you know, already a homophobe. [H-L]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Deserves To Be Thrown Into A Shitty Western Kentucky Nursing Home) on Tuesday delayed a vote on the Republican plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act until after the July 4 recess, indicating he lacks support to advance the bill. [HuffPo]

PEE ALERT! Embattled Metro Councilman Dan Johnson wants fellow Democrats to do a crack down on the “continuous leaks” about the sexual harassment claims against him. [C-J/AKN]

Mmm hmm. Ending one the most turbulent tenures of a Washington-based ambassador in recent memory, the Kremlin has decided to recall its ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak, three individuals familiar with the decision tell BuzzFeed News. [BuzzFeed]

Surprise! The Rowan County Board of Education is just as feckless as the Montgomery County Board of Education. Supt. Marvin Moore received an exemplary rating from the Rowan County Board of Education at Tuesday’s meeting. The evaluation is based on a state-mandated Superintendent Leadership Plan. [The Morehead News]

He’s just stupid. Trump in a rally on Wednesday evening said immigrants who enter the United States should not be eligible for welfare benefits for five years, though such a law has already existed for 20 years. [The Hill]

Children of migrant workers coming through eastern Kentucky face language barriers, cultural shifts and a host of adjustments every harvest, and sometimes, every season. While their parents strip tobacco, herd cattle and plant soybeans, their children need an education. [Richmond Register]

In violation of a longstanding legal mandate, scores of federal law enforcement agencies are failing to submit statistics to the FBI’s national hate crimes database, ProPublica has learned. [ProPublica]

Many have flood stories from the heavy rains that hit the area on Friday. Jeremy Taylor’s involves saving two lives. [Ashland Independent]

Many Americans have become accustomed to Trump’s lies. But as regular as they have become, the country should not allow itself to become numb to them. So we have catalogued nearly every outright lie he has told publicly since taking the oath of office. [NY Times]

How far can your eyes roll back in your head? Republican U.S. Rep. James Comer reignited an old political rivalry this week by publicly releasing his personal income tax returns and questioning why Gov. Matt Bevin has not done the same. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Obama Administration tried to shore up state election infrastructures from Russia. Guess who stood in the way! Republicans. [WaPo]

Low-income families who use food assistance programs got a boost on Tuesday that could put more fresh produce on the table through a combination of $1.4 million in federal, state and private funding. [Janet Patton]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Deserves To Be Thrown Into A Shitty Western Kentucky Nursing Home) told senators on Tuesday that he will delay a vote on the Senate GOP health care bill until after the July Fourth recess. [HuffPo]

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Kentucky To Get More Discriminatory On The 29th

Fugitive lawyer Eric C. Conn fled the country using a fake passport and help from someone overseas who has given him a job to support himself while on the lam, Conn told the Herald-Leader in an email exchange over the weekend. [H-L]

Thousands of federal workers at the Interior Department could soon find themselves out of a job as the Trump administration looks to reorganize the agency and cut its funding by 12 percent. [HuffPo]

Maybe a tiny little man with gay people really close to him in his family ought not complain hypocritically? These New Republican bigots are the reason Kentucky will remain forever in the dark, our economy will never rise with the rest of the nation and our children will never reach their full potential. Though, it’s fascinating that A Kentucky Newspaper is STILL neglecting to mention that Rand Paul opposes the Senate health plan because it doesn’t go far enough in cutting benefits. [C-J/AKN]

Don’t come for Joe Biden unless he sends for you. [NY Magazine]

Laws dealing with Bible literacy in schools, religious freedom, nuclear power, charter schools and making it a hate crime to assault police officers go into effect on June 29 in Kentucky. [Ronnie Ellis]

The Trump administration has taken little meaningful action to prevent Russian hacking, leaking and disruption in the next national election in 2018, despite warnings from intelligence officials that it will happen again, officials and experts told NBC News. [NBC News]

The Ashland Fire Department responded to three overdoses in the city, with all three patients being transported to the hospital, during its most recent reporting period. [Ashland Independent]

Not only did the Obama Administration try to do something about Russia, they pushed for sanctions. It was Republicans like Mitch McConnell who fought the Administration at every turn. Because Russian meddling benefited Republicans. And it’s the Trump Administration that’s pushed to reverse and weaken sanctions. [CBS News]

It’s been 17 years since Josh Gentry sustained a severe brain injury in a crash that nearly cost him his life. Josh was a passenger in the backseat of a pickup that wrecked on Ky. 249 at the Skagg’s Creek Bridge in Barren County. [Richmond Register]

The Trump administration opposes a bid to use unclaimed money from a legal settlement over the government’s infamous Tuskegee syphilis study to fund a museum honoring victims of the research project. [Associated Press]

Barren County Middle School students assisted with a study on Thursday in which Mammoth Cave National Park is participating to help determine mercury levels in lakes, rivers and streams across the country. [Glasgow Daily Times]

“About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them,” Carol Foyler, another student, said. “I couldn’t believe he was going after Trump like that.” [New Yorker]

The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission unanimously voted Wednesday to appeal a recent federal court ruling that allows lobbyists to give gifts and campaign donations to state lawmakers. [H-L]

Senior officials across the government became convinced in January that the incoming national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, had become vulnerable to Russian blackmail. [NY Times]

The city of Ferguson, Missouri, has settled a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the parents of Michael Brown, the unarmed black 18-year-old who was fatally shot by former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in 2014. [HuffPo]

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She’s Tied To Ben Chandler And Jonathan Miller? Welp, That Won’t Last Long

The Kentucky Supreme Court decided Monday to hear Attorney General Andy Beshear’s lawsuit against Gov. Matt Bevin regarding the governor’s authority to reorganize state university boards. [H-L]

Where does a person go when they realize they need to do something immediately to address their substance use problem? In Nashua, New Hampshire, thanks to a program called Safe Stations, the answer now is their local firehouse. [HuffPo]

How can Louisville put an end to food deserts? Start by kicking the shit-for-brains Mary Ellen Wiederwohl and the Metro Animal Services trainwrecks running “Louisville Forward” to the curb. They’re some of the dumbest, most wretched people on the planet. If that sounds really mean to you? You haven’t been paying attention. That’s not merely an opinion – it’s based on a decade of reporting. It’s elitist, out-of-touch assholes like this continually screwing things up in Louisville. MEW thinks she’s going to run for mayor, fyi, but she’s going to get her ass handed to her before she ever has a chance to jump in. [C-J/AKN]

Shortly after Michael Flynn was forced out of the Trump administration, his lawyer pushed out a statement claiming that the ousted national security adviser had “a story to tell.” One top Democratic senator investigating Russia’s election interference thinks he’s already telling it. [TPM]

This may be the weakest, most Captain Obvious Mike Harmon audit yet. Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon is calling for the University of Louisville’s athletics organization to put more money into the KFC Yum! Center arena, which is still struggling to pay off construction debts despite soaring revenues in the school’s athletic department. [WFPL]

The United States holds North Korea accountable for its treatment of U.S. student Otto Warmbier and wants three other U.S. citizens detained by Pyongyang to be freed as soon as possible, the U.S. State Department said on Tuesday. [Reuters]

This should end just about like you’re all expecting. Amy McGrath, the retired U.S. Marine fighter pilot considering a run for Congress as a Democrat, won’t easily be pigeon-holed by political opponents. That won’t stop them from trying, of course. McGrath, who retired as a Lieutenant Colonel from the Marine Corps on June 1, is considering a challenge to Republican U.S. Congressman Andy Barr in Kentucky’s Sixth District. [Ronnie Ellis]

For decades, the Department of Justice has used court-enforced agreements to protect civil rights, successfully desegregating school systems, reforming police departments, ensuring access for the disabled and defending the religious. [ProPublica]

Incoming City Manager Michael Graese is set to dominate the list of highest-paid city employees in the new fiscal year, and the top 15 salaries will cost the city $1.4 million. Graese, who is retiring from the military and plans to start work in Ashland in August, will be paid $130,000 — the second-highest employee salary in the city’s history. Interim City Manager Steve Corbitt’s pay this year is based on a $153,373 salary, the same salary he had before he retired for the first time as city manager in 2013. [Ashland Independent]

Jane and Abe Goren retired here five years ago to escape the higher cost of living they had abided for decades in the suburbs of New York City. They did not anticipate having to write monthly checks for health insurance that would exceed their mortgage and property taxes combined. [NY Times]

Creating a new name and adjusting the composition of the board of directors for the Glasgow-Barren County Industrial Development and Economic Authority to have more elected officials in voting positions were just two of several suggestions from the magistrate who chairs the Barren County Fiscal Court Economic Development Committee. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Environmental Protection Agency has given notice to dozens of scientists that they will not be renewed in their roles in advising the agency, continuing a scientific shake-up that has already triggered resignations and charges from some researchers that the administration is politicizing the agency. [WaPo]

Georgetown College’s year-long probation will continue for another year. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, the accrediting agency for the private, liberal arts Scott County college, extended its probation last week, according to documents posted on its website. [H-L]

Way to go, Republican dimwits. Under pressure from Donald Trump, Ford scrapped its plans to build a $1 billion plant in Mexico that would’ve produced its Focus compact car. But in a move that’s likely to vex the president, the automaker has decided to relocate its production to China in 2019. [HuffPo]

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Oh Noes, Gambling Is Going To Ruin Everything Forever And Ever! Amen

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted Tuesday to approve plans for Churchill Downs to build a $50 million to $60 million gambling parlor at a former training track in Louisville. [H-L]

The coroner’s office in Cincinnati, Ohio, launched an investigation into the death of Otto Warmbier, the 22-year-old American student who died Monday just days after being released from a North Korean prison. [HuffPo]

Translation: Scott Jennings called his friends at the paper and told them he was offered a job by Donald Trump but turned it down. [C-J/AKN]

Former Attorney General Eric Holder is poised to take a more active role in opposing President Trump, telling Yahoo News in an interview published Tuesday that “now is the time to be more visible” — including weighting a 2020 presidential bid. [The Hill]

Anti-hunger advocates fear the $193 billion reduction President Donald Trump proposes to the federal food stamp program over the next 10 years will hurt millions of needy Americans who rely on it for their daily sustenance. [Richmond Register]

Opponents of President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from six Muslim-majority countries again urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday to reject his bid to revive it, saying his administration undermined its own arguments by amending the order last week. [Reuters]

Members heaved a sigh of relief when Michelle Veach told the Ashland Rotary taxes will not be going up this year. During their regular Monday meeting, members learned about city finances and the proposed budget that will get a first reading and vote Thursday at the city commission meeting. [Ashland Independent]

The pressure is growing to force President Trump to turn over his tax returns. The other day, for example, 200 Congressmen filed a suit in federal court, arguing that voters and lawmakers have a right to know whether Trump’s businesses are violating the Constitution’s emolument clause, which bars the president from accepting payments from foreign countries. [ProPublica]

In the wake of former Jailer Matt Mutter’s retirement and subsequent return as chief deputy jailer, a magistrate who voiced opposition to the action has proposed a county ordinance that would prevent such an action in the future. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Trump, who came into office courting labor unions and vowing to stand up for American workers, is taking a major step to alter the direction of federal labor policy, positioning the National Labor Relations Board to overturn a series of high-profile Obama-era decisions. [NY Times]

In a move to be more fiscally-conservative, the University of Louisville is suspending a contract designed to make the school’s facilities more energy efficient. The news comes only weeks after U of L touted the progress it’s made reducing the university’s greenhouse gas emissions — progress which was bolstered by the millions of dollars spent upgrading lighting, insulation and mechanical systems on the school’s three campuses. [WFPL]

A bipartisan bill extending financial sanctions on Russia and Iran and making it more difficult for Trump to ease Russian sanctions has encountered a major procedural snag, threatening its quick passage into law and prompting Democrats to accuse House Republicans of protecting Trump. [WaPo]

As students walked across the stage to receive their diplomas throughout Kentucky this spring, they could be confident they were entering a job-seekers’ market. [H-L]

In February, a cadre of Republican elder statesmen unveiled their plan to put a tax on carbon emissions, arguing that “mounting evidence of climate change is growing too strong to ignore.” That plan got the backing of Big Oil on Tuesday, as Exxon Mobil Corp., BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Total announced a new campaign to push Congress to consider passing a carbon tax. [HuffPo]

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Thank Repubs For Killing Health Care

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear sued Gov. Matt Bevin on Tuesday for the fourth time, claiming the Republican governor did not have the authority to dissolve and reorganize several state education boards to which Bevin appoints members. [H-L]

White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s first on-camera press briefing in over a week was full of non-answers and promises to “touch base” with President Donald Trump at a later date. [HuffPo]

Spoiler alert for Governor Dingus: hell doesn’t exist. If it did, most people with a brain would push to send him there. Not just because he’s painfully stupid but because he’s a hypocritical bigot. [C-J/AKN]

Several Senate Republicans are criticizing their own party for negotiating and writing an ObamaCare repeal-and-replace bill largely behind closed doors and without input from Democrats. [The Hill]

The old saying goes “It takes a village.” For Habitat for Humanity in Madison and Clark Counties, they saying is spot on. The volunteers, board members and homeowners alike have become the heartbeat of the organization that has continued to grow since the counties merged in 2007. [Richmond Register]

U.S. Democrats took to the Senate floor on Monday to throw a spotlight on behind-the-scenes efforts by the Republican majority to repeal former President Barack Obama’s healthcare law, known as Obamacare. [Reuters]

Attorney General Andy Beshear is again suing Gov. Matt Bevin, challenging the governor’s “unprecedented” use of executive orders to abolish and re-establish state boards. [Ronnie Ellis]

Ford Motor said on Tuesday that it would build its next-generation small car for American consumers in China rather than Mexico, where the automaker canceled plans for a new factory this year. [NY Times]

The Cave City City Council only had three items of business listed on the agenda for its special-called meeting Monday afternoon. One of those items was to consider the adoption of an ordinance regarding the city’s 2017-18 budget on second reading, but before the ordinance could be adopted Councilman Steve Pedigo questioned whether or not it was legal or illegal for the city to suspend its monthly contribution to the Glasgow-Barren County Industrial Development Economic Authority. [Glasgow Daily Times]

In Washington, the need to spin is strong. Which is why it’s so amazing that Senate Republicans aren’t even trying to spin their secret health-care negotiations as anything but: Yeah, this isn’t good. [WaPo]

This ought to melt your brain a little. “I am an eagle from the top of my head to the bottom of my feet,” said Rocky Adkins, Kentucky House of Representatives Minority Floor Leader. [The Morehead News]

Everything happened so fast as I walked out of the doctor’s exam room. I was tucking in my shirt and wondering if I’d asked all my questions about my injured shoulder when one of the doctor’s assistants handed me two small boxes of pills. [ProPublica]

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear is pledging to fight a proposed reorganization and restructuring by Gov. Matt Bevin of nearly 40 medical and professional oversight boards, which control the licensing of more than 100,000 professionals in Kentucky and investigate complaints against them. [H-L]

Senate Republicans apparently have decided the way to improve that “mean” House bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act is to make it even meaner, at least over the long run. [HuffPo]

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Everything Bevin Touches Turns To Trash

Leave it to Matt Bevin to make stupid economic mistake after stupid economic mistake. Capital Plaza redevelopment is about to throw a 385,500-square-foot wrench into one of Franklin County’s biggest industries — office space. [H-L]

While serving as a top campaign aide to Donald Trump, former national security adviser Michael Flynn made tens of thousands of dollars on the side advising a company that sold surveillance technology that repressive governments used to monitor activists and journalists. [HuffPo]

Jefferson District Court judges too often allow cases to be delayed without good reason, creating unnecessary courthouse trips for witnesses, victims and defendants, according to a study of the busiest court in the state. [C-J/AKN]

U.S. immigration authorities have arrested and moved to deport 199 Iraqi immigrants, mostly from the Detroit area, in the last three weeks after Iraq agreed to accept deportees as part of a deal removing it from President Donald Trump’s travel ban, officials said on Wednesday. [Reuters]

Months after the Estill County Jail was forced to close due to safety issues, Jailer Bo Morris says everything is “about the same.” To his knowledge, there have been no moves to reopen the facility, however, he said the jail is getting a new transport van to haul prisoners to and from outside detention facilities holding its inmates. [Richmond Register]

Before he was named Trump’s health secretary, Price took a congressional trip to Australia and pressed officials to extend protections for drug companies in an international trade agreement. [ProPublica]

The City of Ashland may hire a spokesperson to answer citizen concerns more efficiently and handle its website and social media accounts. [Ashland Independent]

Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller is investigating the finances and business dealings of Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and adviser, as part of the probe into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election, according to officials familiar with the matter. [WaPo]

There sure are some fascinating things happening in Morehead, according to its messy mayor. [The Morehead News]

Watergate prosecutors had evidence that operatives for then-President Richard Nixon planned an assault on anti-war demonstrators in 1972, including potentially physically attacking Vietnam whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg, according to a never-before-published memo obtained by NBC News. [NBC News]

The average cost of a four-year degree in Kentucky will be more than $39,000 this fall after state regulators approved tuition increases at most of the state’s public universities. All but two schools asked for the maximum increase allowed by the Council on Postsecondary Education. The University of Louisville did not raise tuition, and Kentucky State University’s board of trustees has not had a meeting yet to ask for an increase. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Sensitive personal details relating to almost 200 million US citizens have been accidentally exposed by a marketing firm contracted by the Republican National Committee. [BBC]

The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees voted Friday to approve a land swap with a private developer that could potentially create two new mixed-use developments and give UK a key block of land near its campus. [H-L]

The insurance industry’s annual confab last week was supposed to be a dry, stoic affair. [HuffPo]

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