Eric Conn: Yep, He’s Rotting In Jail Now

To the saga of Eric C. Conn’s journey from wealthy Eastern Kentucky attorney to fugitive felon captured at a Pizza Hut in Central America, add this nugget: Conn says he used a puppy to cross the border from Mexico into Guatemala, thinking it would help him get past security officers. [H-L]

A New Jersey federal judge on Tuesday officially allowed a consent decree barring the Republican National Committee from engaging in poll-watching and other ballot security measures to expire. [HuffPo]

Citing the deep freeze gripping much of the U.S., Kentucky Matt Bevin is crediting Donald Trump with having “fixed global warming.” [C-J/AKN]

CIA Director Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY’-oh) says he’s concerned about continued efforts by Russia and others to undermine American elections, including this year’s contests, but says such meddling isn’t new. [Boston Globe]

Jeff Hoover is hot garbage. The worst of humanity. Jeff Hoover, the Jamestown Republican who Monday resigned as Speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives in the wake of sexual harassment charges, failed Tuesday to pass a House resolution to make those seeking to expel Hoover liable for any costs. [Ronnie Ellis]

A senior National Security Council official proposed withdrawing some U.S. military forces from Eastern Europe as an overture to Vladimir Putin during the early days of the Trump administration, according to a former administration official in the room with him. [TDB]

Kentucky Electric Steel will close its plant on South Big Run Road in Boyd County in March, according to an email from Michael Estep, the company’s human resources manager. [Ashland Independent]

You have to look hard to see the Supreme Court correct its mistakes. When the justices err, care is taken not to call attention to the mishaps. Some think that’s its own mistake. [ProPublica]

Jeff Hoover can keep screaming because he’ll never be able to “expose” those who brought him down. He brought himself down. Jeff Hoover’s time as Speaker of the Kentucky House of Representatives came to an end Monday with a dramatic, 20-minute floor speech at the end of which he submitted a letter of resignation. [More Ronnie Ellis]

Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap (D) had strong words for Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (R) on Thursday after Kobach tried to lay blame for the failure of President Trump’s Election Integrity Commission at the feet of Dunlap and three other Democratic commissioners. [ThinkProgress]

Visitation to Mammoth Cave National Park was up by 3 percent in 2017, according to Barclay Trimble, the national park’s superintendent. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Under the Very Stable Genius in Chief, the old rules no longer apply. When the V.S.G. moved into the White House, he brought with him an extraordinary collection of subordinates — and I mean that in the worst way. [NY Times]

It’s a real shame Jeff Hoover is still playing the victim, claiming he’s facing a difficulty or hardship because “god” wants him to wake up. HELLO!? Jeff Hoover did this to himself. He did it. He is not a victim. [H-L]

Utah Republicans are looking to set in stone the Trump administration’s sweeping — and, some say, illegal — rollback of two national monuments in the state. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Burchett Finally Did Something Good

Offered a deal that could have created 3,500 good jobs but ruined the beloved rural character of a corner of Bourbon County, Fiscal Court members did a remarkable thing in this money-obsessed age: They said no. It helped that this courageous act was popular with their constituents: More than 150 people packed the courthouse Thursday night to make sure magistrates killed this risky deal, which had been sprung on them only a week earlier. [Tom Eblen]

These people are so intentionally corrupt that we should all be alarmed. Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn (R-Texas) slammed former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in a tweet, and indicated that special counsel Robert Mueller’s findings on possible Russian collusion with the Trump campaign will only be “legitimate” if Republicans like his findings. [HuffPo]

Black drivers in Louisville were nearly twice as likely to have their car searched during routine traffic stops than white drivers in 2016, according to a study from the University of Louisville. [C-J/AKN]

While Congress races to pass a massive tax overhaul by the end of the year, Republicans in state capitals across the country find themselves in a bind as they plan their own state budget requirements. [The Hill]

Boyd County Jailer Joe Burchett officially withdrew his name as a candidate for re-election, Boyd County Clerk Debbie Jones confirmed on Friday. [Ashland Independent]

A U.S. judge on Friday blocked Donald Trump’s administration from moving forward with new rules that undermined an Obamacare requirement for employers to provide health insurance that covers women’s birth control. [Reuters]

Dr. Steven Ralston, provost at Morehead State University, has announced his plans to retire. [The Morehead News]

Scores of Texas landowners in the shadow of the border wall say the government should pay them for their damaged property values. [ProPublica]

Barren River Lake State Resort Park will host two Sandhill Crane tours in late January, which will involve guests visiting roost sites around the lake for the birds, as well as observing some of their more popular feeding areas. [Glasgow Daily Times]

One of the top executives of a consulting firm that the Environmental Protection Agency has recently hired to help it with media affairs has spent the past year investigating agency employees who have been critical of the Trump administration, federal records show. [NY Times]

If the Federal Communications Commission follows through with plans to roll back “net neutrality rules,” Kentucky will be among the states challenging that decision in a lawsuit. [WFPL]

The Trump administration is prohibiting officials at the nation’s top public health agency from using a list of seven words or phrases — including “fetus” and “transgender” — in any official documents being prepared for next year’s budget. [WaPo]

Of course this education reporter is still hyping up charter schools as if they’re a terrific thing. They’ve never done anything hard-hitting on them. The same reporter dragged their feet and ultimately bungled reporting on the Montgomery County nightmare. [H-L]

Sunnie Kahle used to think that if she promised to be good, she could go back to her old school. She’d plead with her great-grandmother to let her enroll again at Timberlake Christian Schools, where she had gone since she was 3 years old. Even if teachers were mean to her, even if other kids said bad things about her, she wouldn’t be mad. She just wanted her old life back. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Marijuana-Related Deaths Aren’t Really A Thing, Matt Bevin

It is hard to imagine now, but the Red River Gorge, a natural and archaeological wonder that has become one of the region’s most popular hiking and rock-climbing destinations, was almost flooded for a lake. [Tom Eblen]

About a third of the students with disabilities who enroll in a four-year college or university graduate within eight years. For those that enroll in two-year schools, the outcomes aren’t much better: 41 percent, according to federal data. [HuffPo]

Only a matter of time until your taxpayer dollars are used to pay Dan Johnson and his avowed racist attorney a fat settlement. [C-J/AKN]

A year after Donald Trump was elected president on a promise to revive the ailing U.S. coal industry, the sector’s long-term prospects for growth and hiring remain as bleak as ever. [Reuters]

More people in Louisville are being charged for possessing methamphetamines than for heroin and opiates combined, according to police data. [WFPL]

On Monday, the FBI released its latest tally of hate crimes in the U.S. Despite a 1990 law that mandates data collection on hate crimes, the FBI’s count remains only a fraction of what an annual national crime victims survey estimates the real number to be. [ProPublica]

An Allen County teen was fatally shot during a pursuit early Saturday involving two law enforcement agencies, police said. [BGDN]

Bad Chinese steel? Drone footage has captured the scale of a 5,000 barrel oil leak in South Dakota. The leak was discovered by Keystone pipeline operators TransCanada on Thursday. [BBC]

Of course CNHI and the Richmond Register are spreading content from proud racist Pat Buchanan. Wouldn’t expect anything less. [Richmond Register]

A senior Russian official who claimed to be acting at the behest of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia tried in May 2016 to arrange a meeting between Mr. Putin and Donald J. Trump, according to several people familiar with the matter. [NY Times]

Spoiler alert: it wont. Braidy Industries CEO Craig Bouchard on Monday told more than 600 northeastern Kentuckians his company will “kill” its metals competition. [Ashland Independent]

Pay attention, you mouth-breathers in Frankfort – both Democrats and Republicans. A case report about the seizure and death of an 11-month old after exposure to cannabis has prompted headlines about “the first marijuana overdose death” this week. Except that’s not what the doctors meant. [WaPo]

Remember how we spent a bunch of time covering CentrePointe in Lexington all those years ago? Construction has started on the first building of the CentrePointe project, more than nine years after the downtown development was first announced. [H-L]

Donald Trump has an inflated view of his assets. The president’s family business is worth about one-tenth of the value he has claimed, according to an analysis of the latest figures he has filed with the federal government. Some of the discrepancy is due to a downturn in business, but the rest is credited to an overheated imagination, according to Crain’s New York Business reporter Aaron Elstein, who examined the numbers. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

The Republican Health Care Nightmare Is Real

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

A Pikeville psychologist convicted of taking part in the largest Social Security disability fraud in U.S. history should serve 25 years in prison, a judge ruled Friday. [H-L]

Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price needs to travel on private jets for his job because he is extremely busy, a spokeswoman said Wednesday in response to criticism that chartering flights is expensive and wasteful. [HuffPo]

This is the dumbest shit. Really? Trying to move it to Philadelphia? Who are these jackasses? The Muhammad Ali Childhood Home Museum shut down this week, less than two years after opening, one of the owners confirmed Friday. [C-J/AKN]

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau offered a rallying cry Thursday for the fight against climate change and an implicit rebuke to Donald Trump, who has announced his intention to pull the US from the Paris agreement to slow global warming. [CNN]

Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear has contracted on a contingency basis with four outside legal firms to assist in investigating and perhaps suing drug manufacturers and distributors for promoting opioids which fueled a drug epidemic in Kentucky. [Ronnie Ellis]

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) signaled on Sunday that she is unlikely to support the latest GOP ObamaCare repeal effort, but said she hasn’t made a final decision. [The Hill]

Three Northeast Kentucky counties were among the ten counties with the highest unemployment rates in the state, according to the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. [Ashland Independent]

So dumb. The Trump administration on Friday reversed Obama-era guidelines on how colleges should handle sexual assault allegations that it said treated the accused unfairly. [Reuters]

Even as lawmakers appropriated too little money for Kentucky’s public pensions over 20 years, they gave away — or left uncollected — billions in revenue in the form of tax breaks and exemptions. [More Ronnie Ellis]

Trump criticized Sen. John McCain and misrepresented the latest attempt by Republicans in the Senate to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act on Twitter Saturday morning. [ThinkProgress]

The Housing Authority of Glasgow will give priority to natural disaster victims — including those affected by recent hurricanes — who are seeking temporary emergency housing for the next 90 days over those who are on waiting lists. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Washington Post-ABC polling released Sunday suggests that, even before Trump inserted himself into the NFL protests, most Americans viewed him as a president who was doing more to divide the country than to unite it. About two-thirds of Americans felt that Trump, despite his insistent rhetoric that the country needs to unite, was, in fact, driving Americans apart. About 3 in 10 said Trump had helped unite the country. [WaPo]

Attorney General Andy Beshear announced Friday that he will partner with four law firms to investigate and potentially sue drug manufacturers, distributors and retailers that contributed to Kentucky’s opioid abuse epidemic. [H-L]

Organizations from across the health care industry have come together on Saturday in a joint statement opposing the controversial Graham-Cassidy bill. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Longtime Con Artist, Bill Ryan, Finally Got Kicked In His Corrupt Ass But He’s Still Walking Free

Criminal charges continue to pile up for a former judge accused of rape and human trafficking in Northern Kentucky. [H-L]

Repeal of the Affordable Care Act is back on the agenda, with Republicans suddenly talking about a bill that, until recently, few people in either party had taken all that seriously. [HuffPo]

Jefferson County Public Schools has changed the way it instructs kids at some schools after a state oversight group found that the district was breaking state law by letting noncertified staff teach classes. [C-J/AKN]

Trump addressed a full session of the United Nations General Assembly for the first time on Tuesday morning. [The Hill]

Mammoth Cave National Park has seen an increase in visitors this year, according to MCNP Superintendent Barclay Trimble, who spoke during the Barren County Fiscal Court’s regular meeting Tuesday. [Glasgow Daily Times]

As deaths mount in America’s opioid crisis, communities on the front lines face a hidden toll: the financial cost. [Reuters]

A member of former Gov. Steve Beshear’s administration violated the Executive Branch Code of Ethics by soliciting other state employees for contributions to Beshear’s 2011 re-election campaign, according to the Executive Branch Ethics Commission. If anyone wants to know why Bill Ryan got investigated? Feel free to ask me. [Ronnie Ellis]

On Friday, Donald Trump told pool reporters he still believes former National Security Adviser Susan Rice did something wrong when she unmasked Trump administration officials late last year. [ThinkProgress]

A utility tax in the Greenup County School District could bring in from $750,000 to $1 million yearly and largely offset anticipated state budget cuts and additional pension expenses, the school board learned Monday. [Ashland Independent]

Hiking, yoga, reading, prayer, chardonnay (but not Xanax): These are the things, along with family and friends, that helped Hillary Clinton after her stunning defeat in the presidential election last year. But these are gentle pastimes. What about kicking things — or weeping? [NY Times]

From different states and opposing parties, West Virginia’s Patrick Morrisey and Kentucky’s Andy Beshear have joined forces to go after something all too common in Appalachia: the scourge of drug addiction. [Richmond Register]

This is what happens when you put stupid people in charge of the most important parts of government. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday that the United States is considering closing the U.S. Embassy in Havana in response to mysterious hearing problems that have left at least 21 employees with serious health issues. [WaPo]

Six current or former members of a board that oversees a Fayette County farmland preservation program have received millions from the program, records show. [H-L]

In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee originally scheduled for Tuesday, Donald Trump’s personal lawyer plans to insist he never colluded with Russia during the 2016 election and to outline the public scrutiny he and his family have faced. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Opposition Research Is Not Newsworthy

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Matt Bevin and the current crop of New Republicans have no idea what they’re doing on the tax front. Kentucky will never crawl out of this economic hole while they’re in power. [H-L]

Hillary Clinton had a very straightforward response when she was asked recently about Ivanka Trump’s role in her father’s administration. [HuffPo]

How is this big news? It’s not. It’s just plain stupid to act like it because this happens every day in politics and government. Sensationalist bullshit like this is a quick way to make people distrust media. That said – this is why people hire folks like *me* to do research. It happens in a way that can’t be easily identified as opposition research. Scott Reed had no clue what was going on and I was standing right in front of him. Same with Jack Conway. Only sloppy amateurs work like this. They probably charge outrageous amounts of cash to do half the work folks like me do for 20 times less. [C-J/AKN]

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Sunday suggested Trump would be open to remaining in the Paris climate deal under the right conditions. [The Hill]

Just what Eastern Kentucky needs! Gambling. Poor people need more ways to lose all of their money. A horse track that has been in the works for years to come to Corbin has taken a new step forward. [Richmond Register]

It is a political practice nearly as old as the United States – manipulating the boundaries of legislative districts to help one party tighten its grip on power in a move called partisan gerrymandering – and one the Supreme Court has never curbed. [Reuters]

King’s Daughters Medical Center and Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital are working to combat chronic health issues prevalent in the Appalachian region. [Ashland Independent]

Trump retweeted an animated GIF on Sunday morning that showed him hitting a golf ball at Hillary Clinton and knocking her to the ground, from an account which has previously trafficked in conspiracy theories and racism. [ThinkProgress]

Work is expected to begin later this fall on a project that will expand Hidden River Cave in downtown Horse Cave. A $350,575 bid for the project was awarded earlier this week by the Horse Cave City Council to Scott and Murphy Construction of Bowling Green. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The Senate majority leader spoke with Carl Hulse about his complicated relationship with the president, why the Democrats didn’t strike as good of a spending deal as they let on, and more. [NY Times]

The Morehead-Rowan County Airport Board announces a $70,000 state-funded project to replace the Runway End Identifier Lights (REIL). TEM Group of Louisville will perform the scheduled work in September. [The Morehead News]

If “war” against the Republican establishment is what former White House strategist Stephen K. Bannon wants, then war is what he will get. Deep-pocketed supporters of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and other GOP leaders have resolved to fight a protracted battle over the next year for the soul of the party in congressional primaries. [WaPo]

Disaster in 3, 2… Why even waste our time? [H-L]

Dumb. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters Wednesday that Donald Trump has done more for bipartisanship in the last eight days than former President Barack Obama did during his eight years in office. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]

Morehead Thought It Was Racist-Free

***Care about the future of Kentucky? Help us cover FOIA and open records request fees relating to Matt Bevin and Jamie Comer.*** [CLICK HERE]

Told y’all a year or so ago that these hemp shysters were up to no good. Up to their necks in corruption. No one wanted to hear it and sat in denial – even the Kentucky State Police. Until now, apparently. Kentucky officials are reviewing a case that could result in a former sheriff being kicked out of the state’s pilot program to grow industrial hemp after he was charged with cultivating marijuana. [H-L]

A go-to argument from science deniers was absolutely crushed by one of the world’s most famous scientists. [HuffPo]

It’s a little after sunrise on the first day of another week, and Cincinnati is waking up again with a heroin problem. So is Covington. And Middletown. And Norwood. And Hamilton. And West Chester Township. And countless other cities and towns across Ohio and Kentucky. [C-J/AKN]

A case in Baltimore — in which two men were convicted of the same murder and cleared by DNA 20 years later — shows how far prosecutors will go to preserve a conviction. [ProPublica]

Surprise! There are ton of racists in Eastern Kentucky and many of them live in the Morehead area. [The Morehead News]

At a Thursday Senate Judiciary hearing, Donald Trump Jr. confirmed he set up and attended a meeting with a Russian lawyer in the hopes of obtaining damaging information about Hillary Clinton’s “fitness” for office. [ThinkProgress]

The former sheriff of Jackson County ended up on the wrong side of the law. Kentucky State Police arrested Dennis Peyman for cultivating marijuana and trafficking a controlled substance (anabolic steroid). According to Peyman’s arrest citation, police executed a search warrant at his home after previously finding 61 marijuana plants growing on his farm. [WKYT]

When the Trump administration announced on Tuesday that it would end an Obama-era program that shielded young undocumented immigrants from deportation, Sherwin Sheik quickly sized up the potential toll on his business. [NY Times]

After a year of hiatus, the ever-popular Spoonbread Festival returns to Berea Sept. 15-17, bringing along plenty of delicious family fun. [Richmond Register]

Mitch McConnell helped create this genocidal monster and he’s refusing to speak up about it. [WaPo]

Nearly 300 Boyd County Detention Center inmates are still scattered across 18 jails and prisons in Kentucky – three weeks after an uprising by maximum security prisoners. [Ashland Independent]

The sky darkened, lightning flashed and a jolt of turbulence shook the cabin of the hulking Air Force turbo-prop aircraft as it plied its way toward the eye of Hurricane Irma, one of the strongest Atlantic storms ever recorded. [Reuters]

Republicans in Frankfort want to make it easier for legislators to harass, abuse and assault their staffers. So of course John Schaaf is all about it. Because legislative ethics are not a real thing. Schaaf is part of the problem and you know I’m right. [H-L]

Steve Bannon, the former chief strategist at the White House, described Donald Trump’s firing of former FBI Director James Comey as a historic error. [HuffPo]

WANT TO HELP US? Use our Amazon links, sign up for mobile service and more. Check this page out to see how you can help us without ever giving us a dime of your own money. Or buy our silly magnets up! [CLICK HERE]