Republicans Will Face Scrutiny On A Level They’ve Never Anticipated And Appear To Be Clueless About That Reality

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The federal prosecutor who pursued criminal convictions of former agriculture commissioner Richie Farmer and other Kentucky public officials is resigning. [H-L]

A federal judge in Texas on Saturday issued a court order barring enforcement of an Obama administration policy seeking to extend anti-discrimination protections under the Affordable Care Act to transgender health and abortion-related services. [HuffPo]

Of course Matt Bevin’s crew of mouth-breathers (yes, all of you staffers are garbage people if you choose to work for that bigot while having other employment options) are continuing their anti-environment revisionist history tour. It’s nonsense like this that will guarantee Bevin’s place in history will rank far below people like Steve Nunn, Richie Farmer, Ernie Fletcher. [C-J/AKN]

“What’s going on, Daddy?” asked my 6-year-old son. It was the morning of Nov. 12, a Saturday — or “Dadurday” at my house — and we were in my pickup truck, headed to a family outing. [ProPublica]

The state Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) announced Tuesday it has signed an agreed order with Advanced Disposal Services Blue Ridge Landfill Inc. regarding the illegal dumping in 2015 of low-level, technologically enhanced, naturally occurring radioactive material (TENORM) at the landfill near Irvine. [Richmond Register]

Donald Trump conned the media on climate. His meetings with Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio are not the story. [ThinkProgress]

It took nearly 100 years for Republicans to gain control of the Kentucky House of Representatives. It took a whole lot less time for them to enjoy the privileges of the majority and for Democrats to suffer some of the slights of being in the minority for the first time since 1921. [Ronnie Ellis]

Three former White House press secretaries sounded various alarms about the president-elect and the possible pitfalls in his relationship with the media in a panel conversation with Chuck Todd on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” [Politico]

If passed by legislators, family court will begin in Rowan County in 2022. A proposed judicial redistricting plan for district and circuit courts will be presented to state legislators in early 2017 when the General Assembly meets in regular session. [The Morehead News]

Between 1999 and 2014, drug overdose deaths in the United States nearly tripled. In 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 47,055 deaths from accidental drug overdoses. Opioids were implicated in 28,647 of them, 60.9 percent of the total. [NY Times]

The Republicans’ “new majority” in the Kentucky House of Representatives wasted little time Tuesday moving on key legislative priorities like right-to-work, prevailing wage and abortion. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Donald Trump is set to inherit an uncommon number of vacancies in the federal courts in addition to the open Supreme Court seat, giving the president-elect a monumental opportunity to reshape the judiciary after taking office. [WaPo]

Screw poor women! Screw the poors! Sluts should pay the price! Right? That seems to be the Republican way of life in Kentucky – it’s their mantra. Just wait til these Republicans start to experience what it’s like to really be in power – exposure to public scrutiny on a scale that’s been previously unfathomable. Women would not be allowed to get an abortion in Kentucky if they are more than 20 weeks pregnant under a controversial bill filed Tuesday on the first day of the state’s 2017 law-making session. [H-L]

It’s fascinating to watch someone who refuses intelligence briefings claim that intelligence he hasn’t even received or reviewed is bogus. What’s more fascinating/terrifying? That ignorant buffoon is about to be your president. [HuffPo]

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Here’s Your Corrupt KDP Schadenfreude

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Get fucked, R.J. Palmer and Dale Emmons. Being forced to pay douchebag Ralph Alvarado a mountain of cash is great fun to watch. You all deserve each other – all three of you. As one of the few people to be able to speak to settling (in my favor!) a defamation suit I filed against prominent Democrats in Kentucky, I think this is hilarious. Just icing on the cake to watch all of these corrupt hacks die a slow death while repeatedly getting kicked in the shady, deceitful gut. Kentucky will be better when that generation finally dies off. [AP/H-L]

A bipartisan group of lawmakers has urged McConnell to take the investigation out of the Senate Intelligence Committee and open a broader select panel to probe cyberwarfare threats from Russia and other U.S. adversaries including Iran and China. [HuffPo]

If you thought this one guy was going to save the University of Louisville from a decade of scandal, you haven’t been paying attention. [C-J/AKN]

Yahoo Inc’s secret scanning of customer emails at the behest of a U.S. spy agency is part of a growing push by officials to loosen constitutional protections Americans have against arbitrary governmental searches, according to legal documents and people briefed on closed court hearings. [Reuters]

Dave Eldridge, a 35-year newspaper executive, has been appointed publisher of the Corbin Times-Tribune and The London Sentinel-Echo. [Richmond Register]

Steven Mnuchin has made a career out of being lucky. The former Goldman Sachs banker nominated to become Donald Trump’s treasury secretary had the perspicacity to purchase a collapsed subprime mortgage lender soon after the financial crisis, getting a sweet deal from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Now, if he’s confirmed, he will likely be able to take advantage of a tax perk given to government officials. [ProPublica]

Raceland councilman Matt Abrams didn’t resign, and the Raceland City Council took no action in the wake of Abrams’ Thanksgiving arrest on multiple drug charges. [Ashland Independent]

The Trump transition team has asked for a list of Energy Department employees and contractors who attended United Nations climate meetings and worked on key Obama administration climate policies, including the social cost of carbon. [ThinkProgress]

Warren County set a state record in 2016 for wheat yield per-acre, and Barren County also had a strong year based on federal estimates. [Glasgow Daily Times]

After all the allegations of rampant voter fraud and claims that millions had voted illegally, the people who supervised the general election last month in states around the nation have been adding up how many credible reports of fraud they actually received. The overwhelming consensus: next to none. [NY Times]

The chair of Kentucky’s workgroup formulating potential changes to the commonwealth’s oil and gas regulations says he believes state laws adequately protect drinking water resources, even with the release of more details from the federal Environmental Protection Agency. [WFPL]

We need the jobs that actually exist in our towns to pay us wages high enough for us to afford basics we can live on. [WaPo]

Federal conservation officials have rejected appraisals of two Fayette County farms at the center of a $300,000 disagreement between Lexington and the federal government. [H-L]

Donald Trump wrapped up his post-election “thank you” tour on Saturday with celebratory geysers from water cannons, greetings from hoop-skirted Southern belles and some gloating over the TV newscasters who had expected him to lose. [HuffPo]

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HAHAHA Julian Carroll HAHAHAHAHA

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How to know Kentucky Democrats are still dead and will remain dead: They selected Julian Carroll as a leader. Sorry for the lack of a pee alert. Saved this one a few days because it was too hilarious. [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump has tapped Rep. Ryan Zinke to become the next interior secretary. [HuffPo]

The majority of students who are sent to Jefferson County Public Schools’ two behavior alternative schools are black, even though black students make up only 36 percent of the district’s overall population. [C-J/AKN]

Mortality due to substance abuse has increased in Appalachia by more than 1,000 percent since 1980. Deaths from diabetes, blood and endocrine diseases also increased in most counties in the United States during that time. [FiveThirtyEight]

Rep. Rita Smart, D-Richmond, who lost her re-election bid by 76 votes to Republican C. Wesley Morgan, told the Madison County Elections Board on Thursday that she has learned of polling errors that could have affected her race and the race for Richmond City Commission. [Richmond Register]

Fox News analyst Monica Crowley, Donald Trump’s pick to be senior director of strategic communications for the National Security Council, repeatedly pushed an unfounded conspiracy theory that claimed Hillary Clinton’s aide Huma Abedin has ties to Islamic extremists. [CNN]

When I was in school our report cards listed grades in subjects we were taking and one additional category — “conduct.” [Ronnie Ellis]

The Law and Justice Party rode to power on a pledge to drain the swamp of Polish politics and roll back the legacy of the previous administration. One year later, its patriotic revolution, the party proclaims, has cleaned house and brought God and country back to Poland. [WaPo]

The Morehead State University Board of Regents approved a new nursing degree and heard a report on fall enrollment at Friday’s quarterly meeting. [The Morehead News]

ExxonMobil successfully lobbied against a bill that would have made it harder for the next president to lift sanctions against Russia, clearing the way for the oil giant to restart a program worth billions of dollars if Donald Trump eases those restrictions as president. [Politico]

A team of biologists from various state and federal agencies have been working to relocate beds of mussels on the Green River over a two-week period. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The U.S. intelligence community will soon disclose an estimate of the number of Americans whose electronic communications have been caught in the crosshairs of online surveillance programs intended for foreigners, U.S. lawmakers said in a letter seen by Reuters on Friday. [Reuters]

About 3,500 former Daymar College students in Kentucky will begin receiving restitution checks totaling $1.2 million, Attorney General Andy Beshear’s office announced Wednesday. [H-L]

As President-elect Donald Trump’s economic team forms, it continues to be highly favorable to a key billionaire hedge fund donor who backed his candidacy when most on Wall Street wouldn’t touch him. [HuffPo]

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Think Ignoring Jamie Comer Is Okay?

Do you really think ignoring Jamie Comer is totally fine, Kentucky? Especially now that he’s a U.S. Congressman?

He destroyed records from DURING HIS TERM.

Here’s a taste:

That’s merely a tiny sample. In one instance, Comer destroyed ten cubic feet of records. In many others, he destroyed tiny electronic files that took up no space at all – in part, apparently (since no one could provide an answer), because some of the files contained information Republicans found troubling.

The Kentucky Democratic Party and the majority of media in the Commonwealth are just twiddling their thumbs. All while people like Jonathan Miller actively work to protect him.

That’s why I need your help covering open records requests to keep digging in.

Another Bad Week For Both UofL & UK

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On a recent trip to Washington, D.C., University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto stopped by the Chronicle of Higher Education to talk about campus sexual assault and UK’s legal case against the university’s student newspaper, the Kentucky Kernel. [H-L]

President Barack Obama opened up about racism he faced throughout his presidency in an interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on Wednesday. [HuffPo]

Criminal prosecutions of former Kentucky Personnel Cabinet Secretary Tim Longmeyer came to a quick end Thursday afternoon when Longmeyer pleaded guilty in Franklin Circuit Court to a single state felony count. [C-J/AKN]

Gen. Michael Hayden, a former head of the NSA and CIA, says he’s worried about Donald Trump’s understanding of cybersecurity. [The Hill]

Law enforcement officials give high marks to Justice Cabinet Secretary John Tilley and Gov. Matt Bevin for addressing a long-running practice of using funds set aside for law enforcement training for other purposes in the state budget. [Ronnie Ellis]

A public interest group urged U.S. officials on Wednesday to free up Washington landmarks for thousands of people planning protests around the Jan. 20 inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. [Reuters]

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) has placed the University of Louisville on one year of probation apparently as a result of Gov. Matt Bevin’s attempts to refashion its board of trustees. [Ronnie Ellis]

Former CIA official Philip Mudd excoriated President-elect Donald Trump and his national security adviser on CNN Tuesday night, calling the Trump transition “a clown show.” [Politico]

The City of Ashland on Thursday accepted a $150,000 insurance settlement from the Kentucky League of Cities to recoup most of the money lost after tires went missing. [Ashland Independent]

The Supreme Court was something of an under-the-radar issue in the 2016 campaign, extremely important to some groups (especially white evangelicals), but not discussed all that much on a national level. But now that Donald Trump has been elected, and with the success of the GOP’s only-Republican-presidents-are-allowed-to-fill-vacancies strategy, it will be of tremendous importance to the country’s future. [WaPo]

The House committee looking into allegations that Republican Gov. Matt Bevin delayed an important Jessamine County road project to punish a Democratic representative collapsed Thursday when its chairman, Rep. Jim Wayne, D-Louisville, resigned. [Ronnie Ellis]

When Georgetown University announced plans in September to make amends for its historical participation in the slave trade, President John J. DeGioia drew a curious parallel. [ProPublica]

Filmmakers Clayton Brown and Monica Ross make documentaries about contemporary science, but about three years ago, they decided to explore what Brown calls “America’s troubled, strange, confusing relationship with science.” [H-L]

President-elect Donald Trump is doing exactly what he always said he was going to do with his company, the Trump Organization. But he’s spinning it as a new decision — and the press is buying it. [HuffPo]

The EBEC Still Has Absolutely No Teeth

The Executive Branch Ethics Commission says that it and unnamed law enforcement agencies are investigating people who may have helped former Kentucky Personnel Secretary Tim Longmeyer to illegally solicit campaign donations from state employees under his supervision from 2011 to 2015. [H-L]

In a testament to humanity’s willingness to take on the most futile tasks imaginable without regard to sanity, it was announced Tuesday that outgoing Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) has put forward legislation that would scrap the Electoral College in favor of electing the president of the United States by popular vote. [HuffPo]

Often, when conducting a routine eye exam, Louisville optometrist Dr. Aaron McNulty discovers that a patient has diabetes but doesn’t know it. [C-J/AKN]

Questions are swirling about whether President-elect Donald Trump will follow through on suggestions during the campaign that he might allow other countries to develop nuclear weapons. [The Hill]

Surprise! The WFPL folks have noticed Eastern Kentucky again. At least that Brendan jackass isn’t trying to tag poor people like cattle this time. (How is he still employed there after the mass exodus of employees?) For Freida Lockaby, an unemployed 56-year-old woman who lives with her dog in an aging mobile home in Manchester, Ky., one of America’s poorest places, the Affordable Care Act was life altering. [WFPL]

A work crew began to dismantle a Confederate monument in Louisville, Kentucky on Saturday, the mayor said, in the latest move to take down or relocate symbols of the slaveholding Southern Confederacy from the American Civil War. [Reuters]

Bill Langley, senior pastor of an Elizabethtown church with a strong reputation for supporting missions, has been elected president of the 750,000-member Kentucky Baptist Convention. [Ashland Independent]

It was supposed to be a big, beautiful infrastructure bill. But President-elect Donald Trump’s pitch for a $1 trillion upgrade of the nation’s roads, bridges, tunnels and airports is already running into potholes as it meets reality in Washington. [Politico]

Richmond police officers may drive their city vehicles home after work only if they live within Madison County. [Richmond Register]

Making sense of this presidential election requires figuring out what happened in rural places across the country. This is especially true in the upper Midwest, where there were sharp swings toward Donald Trump that helped produce surprising victories in states such as my home state of Wisconsin. [WaPo]

City council members agreed Monday night to amend the city’s alcohol ordinance, making several changes. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Safety pins have again become a symbol of solidarity with victims of racist, religious or homophobic abuse, following alleged attacks in the US in the wake of Donald Trump’s election win. [BBC]

Matt Bevin couldn’t find a Kentucky vendor? This should end really well and will likely cost way more than suggested. $583,000 seems unbelievably low. Big Brother may be watching the next time you visit Kentucky’s Capitol. [H-L]

Europe needs to think about developing its own nuclear deterrent strategy given concerns that U.S. President-elect Donald Trump could scale back U.S. military commitments in Europe, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives said. [HuffPo]