LEO Follows up With Heather Ryan

LEO’s Stephen George (who consistently goes the distance in the name of journalism– not just politically) went a little further than most mainstream press outlets in Kentucky in telling the story of Heather Ryan, the young mother who claims she was fired after confronting Senator Mitch McConnell at a Paducah commercial taping.

More on Ryan here, here and here.

From LEO:

Ryan has alleged that pressure from McConnell about this money, and how close an avid war protestor stood to its destination, played a part in her demise.

It was during that meeting — which she taped… — that board chairman Siska implied that McConnell’s staff wanted her gone.

“What they were thinking was that an employee from the building was doing this, and that concerned them because they have a connection to the building,” Siska said at the meeting. “… That someone would feel so negatively towards the Senator coming from this building. That’s what surprised them.”

“I’m confused about their concern,” Ryan replied. “Are they concerned because they thought I was a threat, or are they concerned because —”

“The way it was told to me is, they were shocked at the hatred that they felt coming from your daughter,” he said.

What was that about McConnell’s people not meddling in this mess again?

Read the rest in this week’s LEO…

Kentucky Legislature: Backward and Ignorant

Another scary gay post! Jake is spreading the gay all over the place. Please send all death threats directly to him. Clutter in the tips@ address inbox is no good.

In one of the most stupid moves by the Kentucky legislature in our lifetimes, the Senate voted in favor (30-5) of SB 112 that bans state universities and all government agencies from offering domestic partner benefits.

Sen. Ernesto Scorsone has it right when he says this kind of measure brings out the worst in all of us. It brings the biggest tools out of the shed. Tools led by Republican Senator Vernie McGaha (unfortunate name) of Russell Springs. McGaha says he is “quite proud” of his bill and stands strong for his convictions. So we hope for his sake he’s not one of the several rumored closeted Republicans in the state senate. We hope the same for his 30 friends who voted for the ban.

The bill is now on its way to the House where it’s expected to pass comfortably.

Next on their agenda? Making it illegal for businesses of any type to receive tax breaks or incentives from the state if they offer domestic partner benefits.

Every single elected official in Frankfort should feel completely ashamed.


Will Governor Beshear make good on his promise to use the veto pen?

Scandalous: Attack Mailer Strikes in the 30th

It’s getting down and dirty!

The Republican Party of Kentucky has dispatched a campaign mailer advocating the defeat of Democrat Scott Alexander in the 30th Senate District special election to be held February 5th. The mailer, as you’ll see below, can only be referred to as scathing. Quite possibly one of the strangest we’ve seen in years.

Take a look:

To beat it all, the mailer’s claims come from Alexander’s former Democratic opponent Roger Noe. Noe alleges collaboration between the governor, KDP, et al in “rigging” the election for Scott Alexander to gain the Democratic nomination. Nothing like having a Democrat to back up your Republican claims.

Scandalous! Which head will roll first in the 30th? Who wants to take bets?

Website Wars: Who Has the Best?

Kentucky’s announced (so far) candidates for U.S. Senate are making the rounds. From Pikeville to Paducah, they’re all over the place. One of the most important places for them to be is on George Dubya’s “internets” and for the most part that’s where they all are. To varying degrees, of course.

We thought it’d be fun to pay each site a visit to see who has the best grasp of these internets. Things aren’t as you’d expect.

Let’s jump right in.

Ranked by appearance and overall functionality

1. Greg Fischer

Greg Fischer’s web geeks really *get* it. His site is clean and appealing in the same way John Edwards’ site draws you in. It’s pretty. Soothing shades of blue and red combine well with easy-to-read typefaces. The fading family photo doesn’t hurt. Navigation is simple and at no point could a visitor to the site have difficulty finding what they need. Signing up for email updates couldn’t be easier, as the “GET UPDATES” field is featured prominently on the top of the page. Right where it needs to be. (Something Andrew Horne should have learned from 2006.)

Find out where the rest of the cards fall after the jump…

Read more

Heads-Up to Questionable Rights Organization

Stop the petty bickering.

A week or so ago the questionable gay rights organization calling itself the Kentucky Equality Federation blasted the Kentucky Fairness Alliance and its leader, Christina Gilgor, for allegedly alienating members of the KEF. Jordan Palmer, KEF’s self-appointed leader, has made it a point over the years to feature himself prominently in everything his group does. Totally undermining its alleged mission.

Figured we should chime in to add that Palmer and his Republican self (part of the reason he’s clashing with the legit Fairness Alliance, otherwise party affiliation wouldn’t matter) need to stop with fracturing the equality movement in Kentucky. For over a year he’s attempted to demonize the Fairness Campaign and Kentucky Fairness Alliance. Instead of attempting to work together as Palmer alleges, his organization hasn’t done anything but try to promote itself while diminishing the potential impact of the Fairness Alliance.

It’s great that Palmer wants to help the gays or whatever. But the Fairness Alliance actually has a staff of people who aren’t just a group of friends in real life. They’re affiliated with the Fairness Campaign. And they’re well-connected, active individuals who have strong roots in Frankfort and have fought the war to bring equality to Kentucky. The Kentucky Equality Federation is a new little start-up that should try to play well with others instead of getting envious and upset when the legitimate equality organization receives the full backing of those who strive for equal rights.

We’re not suggesting the Equality Federation shouldn’t exist. But come on. This is ridiculous. You can’t trash an organization just because they won’t put you on a pedestal and cater to your every whim.

BREAKING: Video of McConnell-Ryan Encounter

Earlier today Heather Ryan was fired from her job as Executive Director of the Maiden Alley Cinema in Paducah.

Why was she fired?

Her superiors (McConnell supporters) allege Ryan and her daughter, 12-year-old Heaven, stalked, harassed, disturbed and inconvenienced Senator Mitch McConnell after filming a commercial at the theater.

According to Ryan’s bosses merely questioning the senator about the war in Iraq is inappropriate behavior. McConnell and his people made it a point to trash Ryan across the state and lobbied to have her terminated.

Unfortunately for Ryan, the McConnell clan was successful in their endeavor.

Unfortunately for McConnell and the jokers in Paducah who tried their level best to tarnish Ryan for exercising her first amendment rights, we have videographic evidence of the encounter:

Kentucky’s mainstream media remains missing in action. Where are they?

Fired for Questioning McConnell

We have just been alerted that Heather Ryan has just been fired from her job at the Maiden Alley Cinema in Paducah for daring to question Senator Mitch McConnell and catching it on video. (More info on the background of the situation here.)

Here’s an excerpt from Heather’s message:

It is with complete shock and utter dismay that I come to you this afternoon of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, January 21, 2008. As you may have guessed, a dramatic turn of events happened less than an hour ago while I was at my office in Downtown Paducah, KY. I was fired from my position as the Executive Director of the Maiden Alley Cinema for the incident in which Heaven and I asked Mitch McConnell about the war in Iraq.

It is absolutely unbelievable to me that such a powerful Senator would target a low income family simply to flex his political muscle. But believe it folks, I am now jobless, on the day in which we use to remember the great Civil Rights Leader, Martin Luther King, Jr., because I dared to speak out.

If you’re not pissed off you’re not paying attention.

We encourage you to contact the Maiden Alley Cinema to express your dismay. If you live in Paducah? Maybe you should stop by the theater to ask them what the hell is going on. 112 Maiden Alley, Paducah. Or just give them a call at (270) 442-7723.

Once Heather makes the video of the incident available, we’ll have it for you. It’s not looking pretty for Mitch at the moment.

Isn’t this despicable? Mitch McConnell. The man who professes such a love for freedom of speech and the First Amendment. The lone Republican standing for the right the right to burn the flag.  Cowering like a scared puppy. Getting a woman fired for merely exercising her rights. This attitude of ‘how dare you question my authority!’ has got to stop.  For McConnell and his people to exert influence like this is outrageous.

Where’s the mainstream press on this one? (HELLO, BIG STORY HERE!) Time to wake up.