Gubernatorial Race Will Melt Yer Brain

Kentucky’s next governor takes office Dec. 8 and gets just a few weeks to prepare the roughly $24 billion, two-year state budget that he’ll propose to the legislature this winter. [John Cheves]

When an execution is reported on in the media, coverage typically peaks during the few days before and after it is carried out. But the coverage often fails to go into any depth. [HuffPo]

Jack Conway went to western Louisville on Saturday and promised that he would appoint African Americans to the University of Louisville’s board of trustees if he were elected governor. [C-J/AKN]

The press has become more aggressive about reporting on national security in the post-Snowden world, ranking House Intelligence Committee member Adam Schiff said Thursday. [The Intercept]

Some tourism and economic development officials are squirming uncomfortably as the nation watches the events play out in Rowan County where Kim Davis, the county clerk, refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. [Ronnie Ellis]

The scary stock market that we’ve seen since mid-August is a classic example of how reality keeps intruding on theory. And it shows how there really is no such thing as free money on Wall Street, no matter how beguiling the sales pitch. [ProPublica]

In about two months Rowan County property owners will receive property tax bills for 2015 and some could see a slight increase even if tax rates stay the same. [The Morehead News]

Rand Paul on Saturday signaled plans to ratchet up his attacks against Donald Trump during the next Republican primary debate Sept. 16 – and Trump fired back on Twitter. [Politico]

The number of Kentuckians receiving tax credits through the federal health care law to reduce the cost of insurance is among the lowest in the country. And a state official says that shows Kentucky’s health insurance exchange is working the way it’s supposed to. [WFPL]

Among the first firefighters on the scene when wildfires broke out in eastern Washington this summer was a crew of juveniles — inmates, actually. The crew, teens aged 15 to 19, were building fire lines and digging trenches. Hard work, in difficult conditions. [NPR]

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis bowed to a federal court Monday morning – sort of. She said she will not allow her name to appear on marriage licenses issued by her deputies, but she also will not stop them from issuing licenses. [More Ronnie Ellis]

To listen to the way some Republicans tell it, America is a pretty awful place these days. [NY Times]

Every circus has clowns, and the carnival surrounding Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis’ claim that her religious beliefs should trump the rule of law and the civil rights of the people she is paid to serve has attracted more than its share of them. [Tom Eblen]

Most members of Congress had something to say about never forgetting the heroes of 9/11 as the 14th anniversary of those attacks passed Friday, but by the end of the day, only about a third of federal lawmakers had signed onto new legislation to aid those ailing responders. [HuffPo]

It’s The Big Day For Anti-Gay Kim Davis

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! Help us pay ridiculous the fees these shysters caused. [CLICK HERE]

The heat on Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis rose a few more degrees Wednesday afternoon when a U.S. attorney expressed “grave concerns” about her refusal to issue marriage licenses in the face of a federal court order. [Ronnie Ellis]

Now Rand Paul says it’s part of the “American Way” for government to refuse services on the basis of sexual orientation. [H-L]

The top executives at the largest publicly held fossil fuel companies in the United States have made nearly $6 billion in the last five years — enough to double the U.S. commitment to addressing climate change abroad. [HuffPo]

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, who two decades ago spirited the headquarters of the nation’s largest hospital chain out of Kentucky, says he is coming back to the state to plunder some more. [C-J/AKN]

Candidates and their super-PACs are finding previously unimagined flexibility. [The Hill]

As of 9:17 a.m. Tuesday, Eastern Kentucky University’s enrollment stood at 16,940, a new record. And nearly 60 percent of them are women, EKU President Michael Benson said as the university opened an on-campus women’s health clinic. [Richmond Register]

From the Department of Things Ken Ham Wouldn’t Understand… One of the most impressive weapons to appear during the dinosaur arms race of the Cretaceous Period was the big bony tail club wielded by some members of a group of tank-like plant-eaters. [Reuters]

Lewis Williamson, 61, of Louisa, filed a lawsuit on Aug. 11 in Rowan Circuit Court alleging that asbestos exposure during his time as a student and employee at Morehead State University caused him serious health problems. [The Morehead News]

Over the 18 years Denise Doheny has worked as a child care provider, she’s experienced a number of tough financial spells. She was homeless twice, once living with her mother, another time with friends. She had a hard time affording food. [ThinkProgress]

All but one member of Barren County Fiscal Court voted in a special-called meeting Tuesday to increase the 2015 real estate property tax rate to 14.3 cents per $100 of assessed value. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Attempting to force reporters to reveal information about sources is a serious threat to democracy. A First Amendment showdown may be looming with new indications that journalists are about to be pulled into litigation over leaks about the government investigation that led to the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus and, ultimately, his conviction on a charge of mishandling classified information. [Politico]

Kentucky transportation officials say the state is getting close to finalizing details of a new law that will require some drunken drivers to get ignition interlock devices on their vehicles. [WKYT]

Maintaining her stand against same-sex marriage, a Kentucky clerk on Wednesday rejected a gay couple’s request for a marriage license and braced for a Thursday morning hearing before the federal judge who will decide whether to declare her in contempt of court. [NY Times]

About two weeks ago, as the golfers were finishing their rounds at Bardstown Country Club, Jack Conway stood in a clubhouse dining room and saw the end of summer approaching and with it, an end to some of the issues that threatened to derail his Democratic campaign for governor. [H-L]

If you’re a working-age person without a job, a disability or a kid, then soon you’re not going to have access to food stamps, either. In another sign of eroding sympathy for the jobless amid a tepid economic recovery, states are restricting benefits for the unencumbered unemployed. [HuffPo]

Kim Davis: You’re So Dumb It Hurts

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

Going to school saved James Mouser’s life in early April. Mouser, then a senior at Northpoint Academy in Pike County, cut his hand while at school on a Friday. Unable to see a doctor because he has no car, he lanced his own hand over the weekend after it became infected. [H-L]

Kim Davis, the Rowan County, Kentucky clerk who has received international attention for defying the U.S. Supreme Court, is still refusing to grant marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples today, more than two months after the high court’s historic ruling in Obergefell. [HuffPo]

Neither Republican Matt Bevin nor his Democratic opponent, Jack Conway, seem to be exciting their parties’ bases. Jack Conway is sleepwalking once again. [C-J/AKN]

The pollution caused by China’s coal use gets a great deal of attention, and for good reason. It causes health problems in both China and America — helping to kill 4,000 Chinese people per day and traveling across the Pacific Ocean to increase smog levels in the western United States. [ThinkProgress]

When Hardin County voters help pick their party’s presidential nominee next spring, Democrats will be assigned one of 60 polling places while Republicans will converge at one. That’s never happened before, according to Hardin County Clerk Debbie Donnelly. The only reason it’s happening now is because the GOP is holding its own primary, in the form of a caucus, which allows U.S. Sen. Rand Paul to bypass a state law banning candidates from appearing on a ballot more than once. Paul is seeking the presidency and re-election to his Senate seat. [News-Enterprise]

A federal appeals court in Kentucky on Wednesday affirmed a ruling ordering a county clerk who objects to same-sex marriage on religious grounds to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. [NY Times]

The Kentucky Board of Education has chosen two finalists in its search for a new state education commissioner. It’ll be someone the opposite of great and, sadly, you know I’m right. [WKYT]

The go-to dealmaker in the market for tobacco bonds is gone from her post – a surprise departure that raises questions about the future direction of a once-burgeoning corner of Wall Street. [ProPublica]

Rowan County Attorney Cecil Watkins on Thursday referred a charge of official misconduct against clerk Kim Davis because of her two-month refusal to issue marriage licenses to the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office despite the ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court that same-sex marriage is legal. [Ashland Independent]

President Barack Obama on Saturday defended his decision to allow Royal Dutch Shell to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean under what he said were rigorous standards, fending off criticism by environmental groups. [Reuters]

Here’s another supreme wasted of taxpayer dollars. A drug bust that featured the seizure of 77 marijuana plants resulted in a pair of arrests on Wednesday in Hart County near the community of Magnolia. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The two journalists killed by a gunman while broadcasting in Virginia were shot in the head, officials have said. [BBC]

With the race for governor nearing the Labor Day starting gun, Americans for Prosperity will unleash significant attacks this week to try to tie Democrat Jack Conway to President Barack Obama and the Affordable Care Act. [H-L]

Kim Davis: dumb as hell. A county clerk in Kentucky who petitioned the Supreme Court to allow her to refuse to wed LGBT couples unknowingly married a trans man and a pansexual woman, the couple says. [HuffPo]

No Puppies & Rainbows Here Today

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

The Kentucky Kernel, the University of Kentucky’s independent campus newspaper, announced Monday that it will cut production of the print newspaper from five days a week to two in an effort to put more emphasis on its online products. [H-L]

This is just… sick. Two beloved Virginia journalists were shot and killed Wednesday morning when a gunman opened fire in a shocking moment caught on live television. [HuffPo]

A wildlife research organization that studies the expanding range of cougars in North America has come to a different conclusion from the one offered by state authorities on how an ill-fated mountain lion made its way into Kentucky. [C-J/AKN]

Here’s a real ruh ro moment for a few legislators… The chief executive of and six employees running the website were arrested Tuesday and charged with promoting prostitution under the federal Travel Act. [The Hill]

The high fence surrounding a Purdue University research farm here was installed to keep out pesky deer, but this summer it served a second purpose: Keeping federal drug agents at bay. The research farm, 10 miles south of Purdue’s West Lafayette campus, is home to the first legally grown industrial hemp crop in Indiana in decades. [News & Tribune]

Often maligned for speaking too frankly, Vice President Joe Biden’s reputation for shooting from the lip might be one of his biggest weapons if he does decide to run against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. [Reuters]

Three Kentuckians made Modern Healthcare’s “100 Most Influential People in Healthcare” list. [Business First]

Across the country, those who support abortion rights and those who oppose them are feuding in court over how much information should be disclosed about women undergoing abortions. Supporters say there’s no margin for error. Opponents say it’s about ensuring quality care. [ProPublica]

House Speaker Greg Stumbo will propose a constitutional amendment that would allow as many as seven casinos to open in Kentucky, with tax revenue from the businesses dedicated to public education, boosting the racing industry and shoring up the state’s ailing retirement system. [WFPL]

By 2050, an area of forests the size of India is set to be wiped off the planet if humans continue on their current path of deforestation, according to a new report. That’s bad news for the creatures that depend on these forest ecosystems for survival, but it’s also bad news for the climate, as the loss of these forests will release more than 100 gigatons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. [ThinkProgress]

Only the Madison County School Board and the fiscal court as well as the cities of Richmond and Berea, have not set property tax rates for 2015. [Richmond Register]

NPR’S Audie Cornish talks to Megan Greene, managing director and chief economist at Manulife, about how the interest rate hike will affect mortgages, auto and student loans, and consumer behavior. [NPR]

Visitors entering the Georgetown Police Department’s new $5 million headquarters on Bourbon Street might notice two details. [H-L]

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest renewed the Obama administration’s call for Congress to take action on gun control after a gunman shot and killed a reporter and cameraman during a live television broadcast on Wednesday. [HuffPo]

There’s A Literal Stink In Bullitt County

HELP PROTECT OUR SOURCES! Stop the Montgomery County-Joshua Powell-Phil Rison insanity! [CLICK HERE]

A group of University of Kentucky trustees upheld the proposed revocation of a longtime surgeon’s clinical privileges Monday but modified the decision to allow him access to campus as a tenured professor. [H-L]

Fast-food workers who are hoping to raise the minimum wage will find an ally in the Obama White House this week, with Labor Secretary Tom Perez traveling to Detroit on Tuesday to show his solidarity with the so-called Fight for $15. [HuffPo]

The owner of a failed private wastewater treatment plant that serves more than 700 homes in Bullitt County filed papers late Friday to walk away from the system that’s caused raw sewage to flow into a tributary of popular Floyds Fork for 17 months since a massive tank breakdown. [C-J/AKN]

A U.S. appeals court said the Federal Trade Commission has authority to regulate corporate cybersecurity, and may pursue a lawsuit accusing hotel operator Wyndham Worldwide Corp of failing to properly safeguard consumers’ information. [Reuters]

Berea Mayor Steve Connelly called for changes in city personnel policy after several police officers questioned the fairness of recent salary increases. At the Berea City Council meeting Tuesday, Connelly proposed revising the procedure for employee evaluation and awarding raises. [Richmond Register]

It’s now or never for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. That appears to be the view of his wealthy super-PAC backers, who are spending fast and hard to keep Christie in contention for the Republican presidential nomination. [The Hill]

A company offered a proposal to Barren County Fiscal Court on Tuesday to allow it to do a free evaluation of the county’s energy efficiency. [Glasgow Daily Times]

There’s an old saying in journalism that there are no new stories, everything’s been done before, ProPublica’s Joe Sexton says. But when he came across “The Outlaw Ocean,” investigative reporter Ian Urbina’s latest series for The New York Times, he couldn’t help but be “genuinely jealous” of the intriguing, outrageous world he uncovered. [ProPublica]

An Ashland man who until recently lived in Medellin, Colombia, is among defendants accused of selling millions of dollars worth of untaxed cigarettes from a Russell storefront. David White, who is free on bond and living with a friend in Ashland pending his January trial date, posted information about his arrest and alleged part in the cigarette scheme on Facebook and spoke on Friday to a reporter from The Independent. [Ashland Independent]

Scientists in the US have found a way to take carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air and make carbon nanofibres, a valuable manufacturing material. [BBC]

Rowan Fiscal Court agreed Tuesday to an inter-local agreement with the City of Morehead to form a city-county recreation commission. [The Morehead News]

After her two leading rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination became targets of the Black Lives Matter movement, Hillary Clinton came armed with policy arguments when she met with members of the African-American activist group last week. [Mother Jones]

Mathieux Saint Fleur has been virtually blind for two decades. In less than 24 hours, he will see again. [H-L]

Students in America’s schools are much, much poorer than they were nine years ago. In 2006, 31 percent of America’s students attended schools in “high-poverty” districts, meaning that 20 percent or more of the district’s students lived below the federal poverty line. [HuffPo]

Post-Holiday Hangover? Read This Crap

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul led a successful effort to block renewal of the Patriot Act early Saturday morning, followed by a deeply divided Senate leaving Washington without taking action on the National Security Agency’s soon-to-expire power to collect Americans’ phone records. [H-L]

Some electronic cigarette companies say that their products help people quit smoking, but the evidence to back up this claim is lacking, a new study finds. [HuffPo]

Republican state Sen. Brandon Smith has been acquitted of driving under the influence of alcohol. [C-J/AKN]

A federal judge on Thursday reaffirmed her earlier ruling that same-sex couples in Alabama have a right to wed under the Constitution, but she put the ruling on hold until the U.S. Supreme Court issues a landmark decision on gay marriage. [Reuters]

Roughly 17 months since the enterprise’s first summit started the conversation and began asking the tough questions, Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) returned to Pikeville for another summit, this time to provide insight and answers. [Hazard Herald]

The voicemail message was like so many others from my mom. “Hi, it’s mom,” she began, then chatted on, full Jewish mother in her distinctive gravelly timbre. “There’s a storm coming your way…Please drive very carefully….Love you. Bye.” [ProPublica]

It’s time for a reminder about Adam Edelen and educational audits. An audit is NOT a forensic accounting investigation. It’s typically a random sampling that gets reviewed unless specific concerns are brought to light. Or, in the case of Montgomery County, not. Because specific concerns were deliberately ignored by Edelen’s team. When he says there was no fraud discovered? Remember: not a forensic accounting, not an in-depth investigation of every nook and cranny. [Business First]

Arizona’s legislature has decided to try to plug a $1 billion budget deficit in part by kicking people off of welfare after just 12 months, the strictest time limit in the country. Sounds like something Frankfort would try. [Think Progress]

More than 50 community members gathered Wednesday to formulate an action plan to improve the health of Madison County residents in three areas – mental health and healthy lifestyle choices as well as alcohol, tobacco and other drug dependency. [Richmond Register]

The sleepy United States senators thought they were done voting. But then, around 1 a.m. on the Saturday before Memorial Day, Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky and presidential candidate, marched spryly to the Senate floor to let it be known that, no, he would not agree to extend the federal government’s bulk collection of phone records program. Not even for one day. [NY Times]

Bradley Lewis has resigned as a sergeant at the Glasgow Police Department, according to information released Friday by interim GPD Chief James Duff. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Mitch McConnell stood at his desk on the Senate floor after 1 a.m. Saturday, the eyes of his colleagues trained on him. He seemed bewildered. [WaPo]

We’ll miss the voice of Merlene Davis and wish her the best! It has been suggested that with this farewell column I should burn bridges and drop the mic. A couple of years ago, I might have done just that. But I’m a bit tired now, weakened by the weight of mirrors I’ve tried to hold up to politicians, school administrators, conservatives, liberals, Democrats and Republicans, neighbors and friends. I’m running out of ways to say the same thing. [Merlene Davis]

A revealing conversation on the Senate floor Thursday showed precisely how secretive President Barack Obama’s pending trade deals are, and the absurdity of arguments to the contrary. [HuffPo]

It’s Post-Primary Hangover Time!

You should check out this interactive map of last night’s vote results from across Kentucky. [H-L]

As much as journalists may fancy themselves superhuman observers of history, the truth is that we are as susceptible to trauma as the victims whose stories we tell. [HuffPo]

A Franklin County grand jury Tuesday indicted former Buffalo Trace Distillery security guard Leslie M. Wright, 34, of Frankfort, on charges of being paid to look the other way as barrels were stolen for what authorities say was a bourbon theft criminal syndicate. [C-J/AKN]

Kentucky hates old people. States with at least 40 percent of homes ranked on the bottom two rungs include North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. [Newsweek]

The real reason Republicans running for governor didn’t have in-depth discussions is because two of the candidates were incapable. The other two, one a former state supreme court justice and the other, an evangelical extremist who is overcompensating like woah, have never been outside their respective bubbles. Ever. [Eye Roll]

After winning reelection and control of the U.S. Senate, Republican Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., appointed Hazen Marshall, a lobbyist for Koch Industries, as his new policy chief. [The Intercept]

A historic case against the iconic Wagner’s Pharmacy near Churchill Downs is likely to end, since the Kentucky Supreme Court has ruled that morbid obesity is not a state-protected disability. [Business First]

The White House on Monday called the fall of Ramadi to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) a “setback,” but vowed the U.S. is determined to help retake the Iraqi city. [The Hill]

An online fundraising campaign was successful for the Louisville businessman who is set to buy Guntown Mountain, the Western-themed roadside attraction in Cave City. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Obese young adults may be more likely to have a stroke than people who aren’t overweight, a U.S. study suggests. [Reuters]

His first four and a half months in office have included two record-breaking winter storms, two instances of flooding, collapsed bridges and the arrest of a Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program employee on forgery and theft charges. “All that’s missing is for a plague of locusts to hit Madison County, and we would have faced all possible challenges,” Madison Judge/Executive Reagan Taylor said Friday in his first State of the County address. [Richmond Register]

Millions of Americans use GlaxoSmithKline’s purple inhaler. But whether Advair poses a higher risk of asthma-related death remains uncertain 15 years after regulators approved the drug. [ProPublica]

The University of Kentucky has begun a sweeping overhaul of its body bequeathal program after finding numerous problems with its administration and oversight, including a three to five year delay in burying the remains of people who’d given their bodies for scientific research. The overhaul includes eliminating the position of program director Gary Ginn, who is also the Fayette County Coroner. [H-L]

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg officiated a same-sex wedding over the weekend, and according to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, the Notorious R.B.G. gave a big shout-out to the U.S. Constitution. [HuffPo]