Probably Not A Fun Time For Keith Hall

A jury convicted former state Rep. W. Keith Hall, D-Phelps, on Friday of bribing a state coal mine inspector to win favorable treatment for surface mines he owned in Pike County. [H-L]

Justice Antonin Scalia may have penned the most colorful dissent to Friday’s landmark Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality, but his colleague Clarence Thomas wrote the weirdest. [HuffPo]

Gov. Steve Beshear on Friday appointed two new members to the University of Louisville Board of Trustees, potentially tipping the balance of a board divided over the actions of the university’s foundation. [C-J/AKN]

Here we go again — Mitch McConnell is still trying to repeal health care reform. Republicans in Congress are moving toward a plan to use a special budgetary process to repeal ObamaCare, after the Supreme Court ruled for a second time to uphold the controversial law. [The Hill]

Despite challenging lower court rulings throwing out Kentucky’s ban on same sex marriage, Gov. Steve Beshear moved quickly to comply with Friday’s historic U.S. Supreme Court ruling invalidating such bans in all 50 states. [Ronnie Ellis]

Keith Hall made the international news. A former Kentucky state lawmaker was convicted on Friday of bribing a former mining inspector not to cite his coal mining companies for violations. [Reuters]

The Morehead Tourism Commission agreed Thursday to pay a Lexington architectural firm to develop a master plan for the old SunnyBrook golf course. [The Morehead News]

The Supreme Court on Friday ruled 5-4 that same-sex couples nationwide have the constitutional right to marry, splitting the 2016 candidates sharply along partisan lines. [Politico]

The Board of Trustees of the Pine Mountain Settlement School has announced the appointment — effective June 1 — of Geoff Marietta as executive director. He succeeds Miriam Pride who has been serving as interim executive director since spring of last year. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

A battle is brewing in Mississippi, as the growing animosity directed against Confederate symbols following the church shooting in Charleston has led to calls to remove the rebel pattern from the state’s flag. [BBC]

After the Supreme Court ruled all 50 states must allow same-sex marriages, Republican Matt Bevin used the decision to criticize Attorney General Jack Conway as the two men battle to be the next Kentucky governor. [WKYT]

People from around the country react to Friday’s Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage. [NPR]

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has admonished South Carolina, Texas and Kentucky for failing to provide enough money from tobacco tax revenue or tobacco prevention efforts. [H-L]

President Barack Obama delivered a stirring eulogy at the funeral for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, a South Carolina state senator and pastor who was one of nine people shot and killed at Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church last week. [HuffPo]

McConnell Pushes Forgiveness Schtick

Senator Tim Scott from South Carolina, via Mitch McConnell’s YouTube channel:



Just remember that you don’t have to forgive. Not now. Not ever. Not if you don’t want to.

This whole schtick of pressing people to forgive that racist terrorist is not helping. People first need to grieve, to get angry. Urging people to immediately forgive is not healthy. Having negative feelings doesn’t make you a bad person. Having positive feelings doesn’t make you a good person.

Spare the talking point about forgiveness being about you and not the aggressor or the terrorist. Nudging people instantly into forgiveness is tantamount to whitewashing and forgetting.

Don’t let anyone tell you how to feel about this.

Just feel and don’t sit in denial about your feelings. Experience them. On your on time and on your own terms.

Frankfort Repubs Harm Public Health

W. Keith Hall, then a powerful state lawmaker who owned coal mines in Pike County, secretly paid tens of thousands of dollars to a state mine inspector in 2009 and 2010 “so he could have that inspector in his back pocket if he needed it,” a federal prosecutor told a jury Monday. [John Cheves]

Those who believe slavery was not a central point of conflict in the Civil War may wish to peruse the South Carolina, Georgia, Mississippi and Texas declarations of secession. Those documents all explicitly cite threats to slavery as reasons for secession. Mississippi’s declaration goes so far as to say that “a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization.” [HuffPo]

One week into the opening of Louisville’s syringe exchange, health officials doled out 1,352 clean syringes to drug users and collected just 189. So get with the program, small town Kentucky! [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Monday that a Los Angeles ordinance that lets police view hotel guest registries without a warrant violates the privacy rights of business owners, taking away what the city called a vital tool to fight prostitution and other crimes. [Reuters]

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved, with modifications, a settlement agreement granting a rate increase to Kentucky Power Co. [Ashland Independent]

Racist wingnuts are the worst. The absolute worst. This country can do better than this hatred. [ThinkProgress]

After hearing additional information from Mayor Dick Doty and comments from the city’s fire chief, Glasgow City Council decided to abandon the idea of placing a third fire station at a site donated by a local manufacturing company. [Glasgow Daily Times]

On the eve of what could be a landmark US Supreme Court decision enshrining gay marriage as a constitutional right across the country, evangelical conservatives converged on Washington DC to talk politics and size up Republican presidential hopefuls. [BBC]

“Freedom Fest: Thunder Over Triplett,” is not only a fireworks show but a community event that has brought together several organizations to create an evening of fun and fellowship. [The Morehead News]

Police across the country have collected an enormous amount of data with license plate readers over the past few years. But what does that data actually tell us and who can see it? [NPR]

Leave it to backwater Republicans to complain about Louisville’s needle exchange. [WKYT]

GOP-backed legislation pending in Congress would thwart NASA’s push to end U.S. dependence on the Kremlin to send astronauts to the International Space Station, the agency is warning. [The Hill]

For Rand Paul, the rubber is meeting the road. In the wake of last week’s racist shootings in Charleston, S.C., the Republican Party has been torn on the issue of whether the Confederate flag should continue to fly on the grounds of the state Capitol in Columbia. [H-L]

Charleston, South Carolina Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr. (D) said on Sunday that the lack of gun control in the United States was “insane.” [HuffPo]

Mitch McConnell is unpopular in Kentucky and Matt Bevin is leading Jack Conway. [PPP]

People Still Support That Racist Flag

“The Confederate Battle Flag means different things to different people, but the fact that it continues to be a painful reminder of racial oppression to many suggests to me at least that it’s time to move beyond it, and that the time for a state to fly it has long since passed. There should be no confusion in anyone’s mind that as a people we’re united in our determination to put that part of our history behind us.” [Mitch McConnell]

The University of Kentucky has twice violated the state’s open-records law since 2014, according to opinions released Monday by the Kentucky attorney general’s office. [H-L]

An Afghan family returning to their home after fleeing a possible military operation struck a roadside bomb Saturday in the country’s south, killing at least 12 of them and wounding eight, authorities said. [HuffPo]

Aetna Inc. has made a takeover bid for Louisville-based health care giant Humana, increasing speculation that one of the city’s biggest employers is about to change hands. [C-J/AKN]

With the U.S. Supreme Court expected to rule by the end of the month on whether same-sex marriage is legal, many Christian evangelicals say they would refuse to obey a decision allowing gay unions. [Reuters]

Under certain scenarios, a large percentage of Americans could subsist on a diet made up of mostly local food, according to a new study. [WFPL]

America earns $3 billion a year charging strapped college parents above-market interest. “It’s like ‘The Sopranos,’ except it’s the government.” [Politico]

The Governor’s Medal of Valor was presented posthumously to Delano G. Powell, a Kentucky State Trooper killed in the line of duty in 1965, at a ceremony held in Lexington Thursday. [Richmond Register]

Government forces in northern Afghanistan launch a counter-offensive against the Taliban after they took control of a key district. [BBC]

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System and Shaping Our Appalachian Region have a three-year strategic partnership designed to provide eastern Kentucky residents with the educational opportunities that lead to good jobs. [Ashland Independent]

If the court hands a victory to Republicans by ending subsidies for 6.4 million Americans, Republicans in Congress will be left scrambling to come up with a new game plan. Because they still don’t have a game plan. [ThinkProgress]

Bill Redwine, chair of the Rowan County Board of Education, announced at the regular meeting Tuesday that he is resigning effective June 30. [The Morehead News]

Nearly two centuries before Dylann Roof, the state of South Carolina conducted its own massacre of Emanuel AME Church members. Roof, who embraced white supremacy, killed nine church members Wednesday evening. The white supremacist-controlled state of South Carolina killed 35. [The Intercept]

C-SPAN will participate in a press conference on Monday with Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and Time Warner Cable representatives to announce details about its week-long visit to Lexington to report on Lexington’s history and literary life. [H-L]

On the morning of December 14, 2012, as news trickled in painfully slowly about a shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut, aides gathered in the White House to chart out a response. [HuffPo]