How Will Martin O’Malley Do In KY?

Rand Paul stood before nearly 200 fans Saturday afternoon and made clear his intentions to force the expiration of the Patriot Act when the U.S. Senate meets for a rare session Sunday. [H-L]

Proponents of campaign finance reform are asking the Department of Justice to appoint an independent special prosecutor to investigate possible violations of campaign finance law by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as he seeks the Republican Party’s presidential nomination. [HuffPo]

A backup power generator at a pumping station could have prevented April’s massive flooding and a big sewage spill at Louisville’s Morris Forman Water Quality Treatment Center, state officials have concluded. [C-J/AKN]

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) is scheduled to announce on Saturday at an event in Baltimore, the city he led as mayor for six years, that he is running for the Democratic nomination for president. [ThinkProgress]

Richmond’s 2015-16 city budget is far from finished, but according to an early draft reviewed by city commissioners this past week, it expects to continue trimming expenses, even as revenue grows slightly. [Richmond Register]

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley announced [Saturday] that he will seek the Democratic nomination for president, joining front-runner Hillary Clinton and dark horse candidate Bernie Sanders in the 2016 primary race. [NPR]

Under nearly ideal conditions, roughly two dozen hikers met and walked the W Hollow stomping grounds of author Jesse Stuart early Saturday morning for the first Health Hike hosted by the Greenup County Health Department. [Ashland Independent]

The wait is over. Martin O’Malley is running for president. The former Maryland governor formally kicked off his quest for the Democratic presidential nomination on Saturday in Baltimore, the city he served as mayor for six years. [Mother Jones]

Now we know the contest for governor is between Democrat Jack Conway and Republican Matt Bevin after James Comer conceded to Bevin on Friday. If Bevin has a credibility problem, Conway has a sincerity and image problem. [Ronnie Ellis]

“These shootings are grossly under­reported,” said Jim Bueermann, a former police chief and president of the Washington-based Police Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving law enforcement. “We are never going to reduce the number of police shootings if we don’t begin to accurately track this information.” [WaPo]

The Kentucky Department of Corrections is hoping to combat a high number of staff vacancies and turnover rates in state prisons by increasing compensation for correctional officers and other hazardous duty staff, according to a government release. [The Morehead News]

A 13-year tally of deaths and poisonings from ephedra show a spectacular decline after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration banned the sale of weight loss products containing the herb in 2004. [Reuters]

The reality is that Americans who need government aid, like Americans living below the poverty line, represent a shifting population. A parent who loses his job — and the health care that came with it — may need to rely on Medicaid temporarily. [H-L]

Are you ready to throw up in your mouth a little bit? Rand Paul (R-Eggplant Emoji) used some verbal aikido on Jon Stewart during Tuesday night’s “Daily Show,” deflecting questions about marriage equality, and even making an apparent joke about his penis. [HuffPo]

Jack Conway’s Inaction On Full Display

Keith Hall is under indictment and could wind up in prison and Jack Conway thinks this UMG/Mountain Water mess is a-okay. He’s refused to investigate and has pocketed gobs of cash from that bunch. Fun note: Adam Edelen has referred probably more than 100 cases (that he’s keeping track of) that Conway has ignored. [John Cheves]

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) announced on Saturday that he’s running for president in 2016. [HuffPo]

Kentucky has no procedure for tracking rape kits. There is no standardized policy for getting them from hospitals to law enforcement to the Kentucky State Police crime lab. No one knows how many are sitting untested at agencies across the state. Estimates range from 2,000 to 10,000. [C-J/AKN]

The newly legal hemp industry is entering its second growing season with some big questions for producers experimenting with marijuana’s non-intoxicating cousin. The federal government has allowed limited imports of hemp seed — in Colorado’s case, this month — for research and development purposes. Companies trying to create a U.S. hemp industry are seeking investors not only for unproven products but for a plant that is still classified under the federal Controlled Substances Act with marijuana and thus cannot be patented. [ABC News/AP]

Saturday night’s statewide Republican dinner was supposed to be about unity, and it was, in more ways than one. But none of his former opponents showed up. [Ronnie Ellis]

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley strongly rejected Saturday the idea that another Bush or Clinton should ever enter the White House. [The Hill]

County residents whose lives have been affected by landfill odors met with The Independent last week and said they are calling on the Boyd County Fiscal Court to help find a solution to the problems. [Ashland Independent]

The Obama administration on Wednesday issued a new rule to protect streams and wetlands under the Clean Water Act, a step it said would help keep drinking water safe, but farmers and industry groups argued the regulation will be costly. [Reuters]

Two episodes for the upcoming season of the reality television series, “Fat Guys in the Woods,” was filmed in Kentucky; more specifically in the Red River Gorge and eastern Kentucky cave country areas. “Fat Guys in the Woods” airs on The Weather Channel and will begin its second season on June 7. [Glasgow Daily Times]

How Mike Bloomberg, red-state businesses, and a lot of Midwestern lawyers are changing American energy faster than you think. [Politico]

County Attorney Cecil Watkins filed suit against the Kentucky Department of Corrections (DOC) Friday for architectural and engineering costs for the new Rowan County Detention Center. [The Morehead News]

Back in 2013, authorities in Frankfort, Kentucky, discovered that the Buffalo Trace Distillery was bleeding bottles of Pappy Van Winkle. More than 200 bottles of the super-small batch brown were missing, and it attracted international attention because Pappy Van Winkle (which bottles a mere seven to eight thousand cases of its ultra-premium bourbon, about one-thousandth of the output of Jim Beam) is the sort of thing that millionaires will fight each other for, because people who can buy anything go crazy when they can’t buy something. [Thrillist]

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell was not in the audience, but that didn’t stop his former rival and GOP gubernatorial nominee Matt Bevin from trying to put tensions between him and McConnell to bed. [H-L]

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-Wingnut) was so incensed by Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-Troll) comments on the Islamic State and Iraq that he issued a statement on official state letterhead calling the presidential candidate “unsuited to be Commander-in-Chief.” [HuffPo]

Let The Matt Bevin Funtimes Begin!

Daniel Boone National Forest officials have some advice on avoiding encounters with black bears. [H-L]

The United States might just be on the verge of a wind power revolution. Or, at least, the newest generation of wind turbines, featuring taller towers and longer blades, have the potential to push the country in that direction. [HuffPo]

Kentucky and Indiana are among the fattest states in the nation. [C-J/AKN]

How on earth can a majority of people support something that is secret? A majority of Americans support new trade deals, a Reuters/Ipsos poll showed on Wednesday, even as President Barack Obama struggles to win support for legislation key to sealing a signature Pacific Rim trade agreement. [Reuters]

Glasgow’s city attorney responded Wednesday to a lawsuit filed by former Glasgow police chief Guy Turcotte against the city and interim chief James Duff by saying the lawsuit will provide an opportunity for the public to look closer at Turcotte’s record with the Glasgow Police Department. [Glasgow Daily Times]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… A human skull from a deep cave in northern Spain shows evidence of a lethal violent attack 430,000 years ago, a study shows. [BBC]

First Lady of Kentucky Jane Beshear didn’t seem to mind getting her hands dirty in order to promote agriculture at the dedication of a Governor’s Garden at Morehead State University on Wednesday. [Ashland Independent]

With new businesses sprouting up left and right, there’s a lot of talk these days about Detroit being on the comeback trail. [NPR]

An un-named source within the Laurel County school district told WKYT that South Laurel High School was threatened with legal action if they allowed prayer at their graduation this weekend. [WKYT]

Kevin Drum doesn’t write much about guns, which is why I’m going to keep on it a bit here and honor him by rolling out the red carpet for a bunch of grating 2A trolls to stampede into the comments thread. [Mother Jones]

Jack Conway on the nomination of Matt Bevin: I welcome Matt Bevin to the governor’s race as the Republican nominee. I look forward to a spirited race with my opponent and a conversation with voters over the next five months about the issues that matter most to Kentucky families. / This campaign is about standing up for their interests and values. It’s about moving Kentucky forward by creating good-paying jobs and growing our economy, investing in our education system at all levels, and building out our infrastructure. I’m the only candidate with a proven record of putting people over politics, and that’s a commitment I promise to keep. / Sannie Overly, our families and I are incredibly grateful to those who have opened their hearts and homes to us thus far, lending their friendship and support throughout this journey. We are excited to continue crisscrossing the state, visiting our counties and sharing our vision for Kentucky’s future with voters this summer and fall. [Press Release]

In a presidential campaign defined by billionaire sugar daddy donors, Rand Paul has a problem: He doesn’t seem to have one. [Politico]

A Lexington man was shot eight times during an officer-involved shooting in Richmond in September after he pointed a Taser stun gun at police, Kentucky State Police concluded in an investigation. [H-L]

Poverty, which affects a growing number of American students, begins its negative impact on learning as early as the beginning of kindergarten, according to a National Center for Education Statistics report released Thursday. [HuffPo]

Jamie Comer Beats That Dead Horse

This was Jamie Comer’s laughable press release yesterday: Commissioner Comer is currently in Florida spending time with his family. He will issue a statement tomorrow afternoon about the next steps he will take in this race. [Press Release]

A statewide recanvass of vote totals in the Republican race for governor showed no substantial changes, Secretary of State Alison Lundergran Grimes said Thursday afternoon. But Jamie Comer still might push for a recount. [H-L]

The U.S. Department of Education has formally cleared Navient Corp., the student loan giant formerly part of Sallie Mae, of wrongdoing after an investigation into whether the company cheated troops on their federal student loans. The findings contradict earlier conclusions reached by the Justice Department, which sued the company in May 2014 after determining that Navient systematically overcharged troops and denied them key rights under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. Federal prosecutors said the company’s actions were “intentional, willful, and taken in disregard for the rights of servicemembers.” [HuffPo]

Citing serious and persistent problems with Kentucky’s food stamp program, federal authorities have warned state officials they must fix the problems quickly or risk losing federal funds the state uses to run the program that helps the poor buy food. [C-J/AKN]

Mitch McConnell said Tuesday the chances are “pretty slim” that Republicans will grow their majority in the U.S. Senate in 2016, saying his goal is to preserve the majority for what he hopes will be a Republican president. [AP]

Nope, the recanvass didn’t change anything. Check out the results in each county. [Click the Clicky]

The Justice Department will not ask the U.S. Supreme Court to stay an appellate court ruling that President Barack Obama’s move to shield millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation should remain on hold, a spokesman said on Wednesday. [Reuters]

Bullitt County magistrates have fired a controversial animal control officer and shelter director. [WDRB]

How federal dollars are financing the water crisis in the West. [ProPublica]

Hundreds of people in Eastern Kentucky in danger of losing their disability payments may soon be part of a lawsuit against the federal government. [WYMT]

The US state of Nebraska has abolished the death penalty after a veto-override was passed through its legislature. [BBC]

There is a man holding a knife to the throat of a woman. A person gets out of their car, has a hammer in their hand and advances, yelling. [The Morehead News]

Many of us have old prescription drugs sitting around in medicine cabinets — so what’s the best way to get rid of them? Some folks simply toss old pills in the garbage, or down the toilet. [NPR]

Jean-Marie is dumb enough to think no one will see right through her desire to open an Western Kentucky office. Using taxpayer dollars to eliminate a commute for her? Right, sure, let’s do that. Kentucky has unlimited funds. [H-L]

The House of Representatives will quickly get down to unfinished business once it returns from the holiday recess: defending trading partners that engage in slavery. [HuffPo]

Kentucky Loves It Some Pipeline, Right?

Ex-Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship wants permission to see his son compete in an Ohio dirt track race. [H-L]

Rand Paul said on Tuesday that President Barack Obama was being “disingenuous” about his ability to override the National Security Agency and end its bulk collection of data, arguing that in fact Obama could act on his own to end the program. [HuffPo]

Another news outlet is reporting that Kentucky won’t have much trouble complying with pending limits on carbon pollution from power plants, despite the howls of protests from Kentucky political leaders. [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. dollar rallied on Tuesday after a string of healthy economic data boosted near-term rate hike prospects, while Greece’s financial crisis and signs of growing opposition to austerity in Spain weighed further on the euro. [Reuters]

Multiple coroners in Kentucky have gone years without meeting the training standards that are set forth in Kentucky law. [WKYT]

The world pays $5.3 trillion a year in hidden costs to keep burning fossil fuels, according to a new report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). This is in addition to the $492 billion in direct subsidies offered by governments around the world — write-offs and write-downs and land-use loopholes. [ThinkProgress]

The director and attorney for the Kentucky Resources Council had more than three dozen listeners as he spoke Tuesday evening about the risks involved with a proposed project that would repurpose a decades-old natural gas pipeline as a carrier for natural gas liquids, which bring a different set of risks. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Preparing for a Supreme Court decision that could strike down Obamacare’s subsidies for nearly 7.5 million people this summer, Senate Republicans are coalescing around a plan to resurrect them — at a steep price for the White House. [Politico]

Larry Prichard loved his alma mater and the profession of education, to which he devoted his professional life, so he might have thought it doubly fitting that a new scholarship at Marshall University has been endowed in his name. [Ashland Independent]

One of the most basic facts about the Trans-Pacific Partnership is also the most important: It’s huge. [NPR]

A federal judge in Colorado has ruled the federal government should have taken the indirect environmental effects of expanding the Colowyo and Trapper coal mines into account before issuing a permit. [WFPL]

Two billion cups of coffee are drunk around the world every day but scientists says the most popular species, Arabica, is under threat – they are now working to save it from extinction. [BBC]

Everyone likes Matt Jones but it won’t be the same without some Western Kentucky drawl. Kentucky Sports Radio host Matt Jones will host the political speaking at Fancy Farm this year. [H-L]

We know that victims of elder abuse tend to be socially isolated, physically weakened and struggling to maintain their independence. They are reliant on family, friends or caregivers who violate their trust. [HuffPo]

Ole Gurl Rolled Her Eyes At Rand Paul

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is working on a memoir. [H-L]

Not even U.S. senators are exempt from a little eye-rolling. That’s exactly what Miss Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) did Friday night when Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) began speaking as the Senate debated whether to end the government’s bulk collection of phone records. [HuffPo]

It’s fun watching Republicans talk about of both sides of their mouths about Matt Bevin. [C-J/AKN]

Paul helped scuttle compromise to reauthorize government surveillance programs. [The Hill]

Matt Bevin and Mitch McConnell apparently won’t be getting together anytime soon despite two opportunities this week to do so. [Ronnie Ellis]

Iraq’s Shi’ite paramilitaries said on Tuesday they had taken charge of the campaign to drive Islamic State from the western province of Anbar, giving the operation an openly sectarian codename that could infuriate its Sunni population. [Reuters]

The Kentucky Department of Corrections is hoping to combat a high number of staff vacancies and turnover rates in state prisons by increasing compensation for correctional officers and other hazardous duty staff, according to a government release. [Ashland Independent]

Even as women distinguish themselves as enlisted soldiers, many struggle with depression and a sense of alienation in an intensely male military world. [NY Times]

Several citizens expressed concern at Rowan Fiscal Court last week over Kinder Morgan’s proposal to carry volatile natural gas liquids through around 20 miles of over 60-year-old pipeline in Rowan County. [The Morehead News]

The glaciers of the Southern Antarctic Peninsula region are now also contributing to sea level rise. [WaPo]

Each school year Kentucky State Police say they respond to hundreds of threats that wind up being student pranks, but the consequences are anything but a joke. [WKYT]

The State Department released close to 900 pages of emails from Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary on Friday, providing a detailed looked at how an embattled agency responded to terrorist attacks in Benghazi and how Clinton, the frontrunner for the 2016 Democratic nomination for president, deals with her inner circle of advisers and well-wishers. [Politico]

Mediation of claims involving sexual harassment, retaliation and other misconduct against state lawmakers has been postponed until June 22. [H-L]

North American energy ministers said on Monday they had set up a working group on climate change and energy, a partnership designed to help Canada, the United States and Mexico harmonize policies. [HuffPo]

Frankfort Loves (Hates) The Environment

Matt Bevin was running out of time. Less than a year after he got shellacked in his first political campaign, Bevin had his eye on running for governor, but he was running into a problem — he couldn’t find a running mate. [H-L]

What? Coal kills? Surely not. Surely all that hype wasn’t just the Coal Association using PR hacks to claim otherwise. [HuffPo]

Proposed state regulations would give billboard companies the authority to cut trees that block the view of their signs — a power the companies have sought, but failed to get, from the General Assembly for years. But environmental groups raised a wide range of objections to the proposal Friday at a hearing at the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. [C-J/AKN]

U.S. Republicans have had to watch from the sidelines as the Obama White House has taken political credit for America’s unexpected energy boom and tumbling gas prices. Now it has left their presidential candidates scrambling for a way to reclaim leadership on an issue the party once seemed to own. [Reuters]

By a split vote, the Rowan County Board of Education has approved purchasing the Rowan Campus of Maysville Community and Technical College for $5 million. [The Morehead News]

Satellites have seen a sudden dramatic change in the behaviour of glaciers on the Antarctica Peninsula, according to a Bristol University-led study. [BBC]

The Inspector General is investigating after a 21-month-old boy was found wandering in the street near a Louisville day care. But when that happened in Montgomery County, the former superintendent and crew were able to scam the IG into believing it was no big deal. Even though the kid was in more danger, crossed a massive by-pass with moving traffic and such. [WAVE3]

America is more liberal than politicians think. [Mother Jones]

In what many people in the area have said would be a step toward justice, Perry County Clerk Haven King has been charged and indicted this month in relation to an alleged incident of harassment and abuse of power caught on video by a Hazard Community and Technical College (HCTC) student in April. [Hazard Herald]

A ruling against pension cuts and political divisions have made a dire situation worse for the state, as well as Chicago and its schools, which face shortfalls of their own. [NY Times]

On Tuesday night, some members of the Lexington Fayette NAACP chapter voiced their concerns to the Fayette County Public School Board regarding next year’s budget. [WKYT]

Yet another study suggests that regular glimpses of nature can have psychological benefits. [WaPo]

The search for Fayette County Schools’ next superintendent has entered a new phase, according to board chairman John Price. PROACT Search, the Illinois-based firm Fayette County terminated a few weeks ago, has transferred electronic files on candidates to Lynda McNamara, the president of McNamara Search Associates of Lexington, Price told the Herald-Leader Friday. [H-L]

The parents unsuccessfully sued the retailers who made the firearm that killed their daughter. Colorado state law requires that plaintiffs who sue the manufacturers of gun products pay the companies’ legal fees if they lose. [HuffPo]