Thursday. Presidential Update Dept. Almost Over.

Bill Clinton is in Louisville (Butler High School @3:30), Bardstown and John Hardin High School in Elizabethtown today. [Press Release]

Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo, State Rep. Dennis Keene and unknown Owen County Administrator Bill O’Bannon will hold a conference call to discuss Barack Obama’s rural leadership plan for Kentucky. [Press Release]

And in Bowling Green, Admiral John B. Nathan and Brigadier General James Smith will hold a discussion with veterans and military families at the Shake Rag Restaurant at 12:30 Central Time. [Press Release]

From the Captain Obvious Department of Duh we learn that Kentuckians favor higher cigarette taxes. Actually, 55% favor taxes of $0.70 to $1.00 per pack. Only 34% oppose. Imagine that. Both the governor and the retarded ass legislature out-of-touch. Can you imagine? [PolWatchers]

Mitch McConnell caused a Senate meltdown yesterday by dumping the Republican version of a G.I. bill into an unrelated floor debate on union rights of firefighters and police officers. Thankfully, the Senate voted 55-42 to table the Republican amendment and the Democratic bill will be attached to the Iraq bill next week. [Politico]

Speaking of McConnell, he has an opponent in the Republican primary named Daniel Essek, a Whitley County truck driver who couldn’t get off work in order to attend the KET debate on Monday. He’d only spent $824 in the first month of his campaign. Is anyone holding their breath on this? Not even sarcastically? [C-J]

In case you were wondering why Kentucky has been flushed down the toilet for, like, ever? The state spends over $400,000 (OF TAX DOLLARS!) a year to promote the coal industry. We just give coal companies this cash to promote their industry. Choice quote, “The environmentalists throw out a lot of negative stuff, like kids who are suffering from asthma because they breathe particulate matter from living near a coal-fired power plant, or deaths caused on the roads by big coal trucks,” Caylor said. “We’re trying to counteract that.” [H-L]

Only Thing More Unpopular Than Steve Beshear

Wait for it.

The Legislature!

A Herald-Leader/WKYT poll reveals that only 22% of Kentuckians approve of the legislature’s performance. Only 12% are unsure. That’s a whopping 66% disapproval rating that almost rivals that of George W. Bush.  22% approval!

Two of every three Kentucky voters don’t like the way the Kentucky legislature is doing its job, a new poll shows.

The public’s job-approval rating for the General Assembly appears to be worsening. A similar poll conducted last October showed 44 percent of likely voters in Kentucky gave thumbs down to the legislature’s performance.

The end is nigh! Time to clean out both the House and the Senate.

Wow. Beshear’s Approval Rating Below 40%

Wow. Just wow.

Poll numbers just released:

Gov. Steve Beshear’s approval rating has dipped under 40 percent after his first session dealing with the state legislature and just six months after winning a landslide election, according to the Herald-Leader/WKYT Kentucky Poll.

Thirty-nine percent of the 600 likely Kentucky voters surveyed between May 7 and May 9 said they approved of the way Beshear has handled the job so far, while 55 percent frowned on his performance.
In addition, a majority of respondents said Beshear hasn’t come through on his pledge to restore integrity to state government — the central argument he made on his way to defeating Republican Gov. Ernie Fletcher in November by 17 points.

Honeymoon? What?

Maybe Beshear will finally get the clue that he needs to hire better PR folks, better political advisors and better staff handlers. He can’t ignore those three areas any longer. Time to wake up and ditch the old guard.

Oh, and maybe his press secretary will finally stop ignoring the blogosphere? It’s 2008, not 1978.

Senate Campaign Rumor Update Dept

We hear from residents and elected officials in the Highlands neighborhood and West End area of Louisville that Greg Fischer’s campaign staff have been spotted removing Bruce Lunsford yard signs. On several occasions the signs have been replaced with Fischer signs, without permission, of course. Not surprising since many of Fischer’s staffers are the folks who did the same thing during the Yarmuth-Horne race in 2006. My question: Why bother? It’s not like there are that many Lunsford signs in the Highlands to begin with.

Numerous sources tell us that the Lunsford campaign will be releasing a petition of some sort re: the Senate race that’s signed by a number of influential types including labor officials. We can only imagine what it’s about. Our Lunsford campaign sources won’t comment on the matter but they also refuse to say it’s not happening. Joe’s hearing the same thing.

There’s also big time chatter of a bogus Fischer push poll that his campaign is itching to unleash.  Can’t get confirmation on this one, though.

Stay tuned, kids. You don’t want to miss a moment of the political gossip the next couple weeks.