Still Sticking It To The Working Poor

The pickings have gotten slimmer when Mike Bowling needs to hire someone for his convenience stores in London and Manchester, where he also has a tobacco store. [H-L]

A federal judge ordered the Trump administration to disclose more information about its decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census — a small victory for challengers who say adding the question was illegal and officials have not fully disclosed how the decision to include it was made. [HuffPo]

Public displays honoring the Confederacy are unwelcome in Louisville and do not represent what the city looks like today, according to an art panel formed by Mayor Greg Fischer. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump administration on Tuesday rescinded an extensive set of guidelines put in place under President Barack Obama that had called on colleges and universities to consider race as a way of promoting diversity. [Reuters]

While the future of a controversial pension reform bill remains in limbo, the Daily News reached out – with mixed results – to the four local legislators who voted for Senate Bill 151 to ask if they would vote for a new bill with the same provisions. Two did not return messages seeking comment, one declined to speculate on a vote and one said he probably would vote for such a bill a second time. [BGDN]

For more than a decade, if you wanted to know how many U.S. troops there were in war zones such as Iraq and Afghanistan, you could readily find that information at a public Pentagon website that’s updated every three months. But since late last year, the Pentagon’s stopped posting those numbers for Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan. [NPR]

The Trump administration’s drive to wean poor people from government benefits by making them work has been slowed by a federal judge framing a fundamental question: Are poverty programs meant to show tough love or to help the needy? [Richmond Register]

Just not in Kentucky – where Republicans are borderline evil. The Medicaid logjam appears to be breaking. [NY Times]

Some political pundits see our country as riven by tribal and ethnic divisions and partitioned by gender as we self-segregate into communities of the like-minded. Such divisions sometimes affect families and lead to alienation of longtime friends. [Ronnie Ellis]

A federal judge in Washington on Monday ordered the U.S. government to immediately release or grant hearings to more than 1,000 asylum seekers who have been jailed for months or years without individualized case reviews, dealing a blow to the Trump administration’s crackdown on migrants. [WaPo]

Linda Graham doesn’t know what she’s going to do. A few hours earlier, a judge signed an eviction order that gave her seven days to vacate her apartment in Parkway Place public housing. [WFPL]

Special Counsel Robert Mueller is reportedly hiring additional prosecutors to work on the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. [The Hill]

A man has been arrested for allegedly threatening to chop up Sen. Rand Paul and his family with an ax, according to media reports. [H-L]

Here’s your duh moment of the year. Several states that voted for Donald Trump in the presidential election are likely to be among the hardest hit in the trade war the president has triggered, according to the nation’s largest business organization. [HuffPo]

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McConnell Doesn’t Want To Do Anything

Is he the most dishonest person on earth or just the laziest? In 2018, at least 26 students have died in five school shootings in America. Two of those deaths came in a shooting at Marshall County High School in Kentucky. [H-L]

It’s hard to see the sky from Mitch Whitaker’s back porch. The mountainside, lush and green on a summer day, rises almost vertically. When Whitaker was a teenager, the top of it was blown off and the land was mined for coal. In the years since, native grasses have grown back and deer have returned. He and a few buddies now run a remote-controlled airplane club up there. Some hunt, have picnics and hike with their grandkids. But things are set to change here in rural Roxana, Kentucky. [HuffPo]

In a blow to Matt Bevin’s effort to reshape Kentucky’s Medicaid program, a federal judge has struck down his plan to require some people to meet strict new requirements including working or volunteering and paying monthly premiums in order to get health coverage through Medicaid. [C-J/AKN]

As a meeting last August in the Oval Office to discuss sanctions on Venezuela was concluding, Donald Trump turned to his top aides and asked an unsettling question: With a fast unraveling Venezuela threatening regional security, why can’t the U.S. just simply invade the troubled country? [AP]

Stories like this that glorify Mitch McConnell’s bullshit with Supreme Court nominees only serves to keep Eastern Kentuckians ignorant. [Ashland Independent]

Embattled Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt directly appealed to Donald Trump this spring to fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions and let him run the Department of Justice instead, according to three people familiar with the proposal. In an Oval Office conversation with Trump, Pruitt offered to temporarily replace Sessions for 210 days under the Vacancies Reform Act, telling the President he would return to Oklahoma afterward to run for office. [CNN]

When the 2018-19 school year begins, Glasgow Independent Schools will have a resource officer in each of its schools, GIS Superintendent Keith Hale said during the board of education’s special-called meeting Tuesday at the central office, adding that he appreciates the board’s commitment to school safety. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Tackling an issue that Congress has largely ignored for decades, the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee voted Thursday to request $50 million in new funding for programs aimed at reducing the comparatively high U.S. rate of women who die in pregnancy or childbirth. [ProPublica]

Donald Trump’s desire to help boost the Ohio Valley’s energy industry and bring back mining jobs could be stymied by the administration’s escalating trade battle with China and other trading partners across the globe. [WFPL]

The Trump administration will encourage the nation’s school superintendents and college presidents to adopt race-blind admissions standards, abandoning an Obama administration policy that called on universities to consider race as a factor in diversifying their campuses, Trump administration officials said. [NY Times]

Warren County Public Schools continues to see significant gaps in test scores for students who are African-American, Hispanic, English learners, disabled and those who qualify for free and reduced lunch, according to a report recently released by the district. [BGDN]

Finally, a family separation story with a happy ending. It’s not the sort of family separation that has been in the headlines lately. [WaPo]

Andy Barr said Monday he supports Kentucky’s ability to determine who receives Medicaid benefits, a day after the Bevin administration eliminated access to vision and dental coverage for 460,000 Kentuckians on Medicaid. [H-L]

Racists gonna racist. Donald Trump’s administration is planning to undo policies that would encourage race as a factor in college admissions, according to news reports. [HuffPo]

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Bevin’s Pension Shenanigans Fell Apart

Kentucky ranks 37th among the states in children’s well-being, according to the 2018 Kids County Data Book, released Tuesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which conducted the research. [H-L]

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld Racist Donald Trump’s travel ban. [HuffPo]

After this and the hiring of Jimmy Adams (see twitter or search this site’s archives), the state definitely needs to take over. Rhonda Martin says she just wanted Jefferson County Public Schools to protect her son, a severely autistic teenager with the mental capacity of a 3-year-old and the speech of a toddler half that age. [C-J/AKN]

Women activists are planning a “mass civil disobedience” act in the U.S. capital on Thursday ahead of weekend protests across the country against the Trump administration’s immigration policy. [Reuters]

Ten months into the county health department’s needle exchange program, 65 people have used it. [Richmond Register]

Way before Jared Kushner became internationally famous by moving into the White House to work for his father-in-law Donald Trump, those of us who live in New Jersey knew the family was an amazing story of immigrant success. [ProPublica]

East Ashland resident Mollie Hood was taking her trash out one recent morning when she came face to face with a man high on drugs. [Ashland Independent]

The Trump administration has attempted to quell national outrage about the thousands of parents and children who have recently been forcibly separated at the southern border, but protesters across the country aren’t letting up the pressure anytime soon. [ThinkProgress]

Attorneys for Matt Bevin Wednesday backed off their argument that a judge’s ruling that a pension reform bill is unconstitutional also put at risk other key legislation, including a bill allowing local governments and school districts to phase in higher pension contributions. [Ronnie Ellis]

A former aide to Roger J. Stone Jr., the longtime Trump adviser and self-described “dirty trickster,” was subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury hearing evidence in the Russia investigation and to hand over documents. [ NY Times]

Rowan County Fiscal Court has officially amended its subdivision regulations ordinance to hopefully cease the repurposing of a pipeline transporting potentially hazardous materials through Rowan County. [The Morehead News]

Arnovis Guidos Portillo remembers the authorities in green uniforms telling him that this would only be temporary. [WaPo]

In December 2004 Spencer Reinhard, Warren Lipka, Eric Borsuk and Charles “Chas” Allen executed a plan to rob several books worth millions of dollars from the Transylvania University special collection library. [H-L]

Donald Trump rolled out his alternative to systematic family separations at the border last week with a new plan: a massive increase of family detention. But the vision taking shape is sure to cost billions of dollars that Immigration and Customs Enforcement doesn’t have. [HuffPo]

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Hold On To Your Wigs Over SCOTUS

Kentucky and our nation are in an era when representative democracy is threatened by huge amounts of special-interest money, one-party rule and chief executives who act like they were elected emperors. The rule of law, the independent judiciary and the free press are under attack. So is government transparency. [Tom Eblen]

Former and current employees at a federal prison in California that began receiving a group of 1,000 immigration detainees on June 8 are warning that poor medical conditions in the prison in the Mojave Desert complex will endanger detainees, as well as the inmates and staff who are already at risk. [HuffPo]

Rand Paul is suing his neighbor turned attacker for medical costs and attorney fees relating to an incident for when he was tackled while mowing his lawn last year. [C-J/AKN]

As the U.S. attempts to reunite migrant families, children will bear the burden of helping to identify who and where their parents are. The 6-year-old girl heard asking to call her aunt on an audio recording from a detention facility this week has an advantage. [ProPublica]

Students at Eastern Kentucky University will be paying a bit more per credit hour starting this fall thanks to an asset preservation fee approved Monday during a Board of Regents meeting. [Richmond Register]

A Republican federal trial judge held on Thursday that the entire Consumer Financial Protection Bureau — all of it — must cease to exist. Judge Loretta Preska’s decision on this matter can barely even be described as an “opinion” because she devotes less than two pages of analysis to this question before proclaiming that a federal agency must be simply wiped away. [ThinkProgress]

Cheryl Spriggs, Denise Rodgers and John Mayhew were each Democrats at one point in their lives. And then they lost the ability to reason and now love an orange racist. [Ashland Independent]

Justice Anthony M. Kennedy announced on Wednesday that he would retire, setting the stage for a furious fight over the future direction of the Supreme Court. [NY Times]

Kerry Dilley was elected by his fellow school board members to be the new chairperson for the Barren County Schools Board of Education on Monday morning during a special-called meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The original source for Trump’s claim of 63,000 immigrant murders? Bad data from Steve King in 2006. [WaPo]

As the opioid epidemic continues and addiction experts push for more medication-assisted treatment, a controversial national nonprofit funded by drug companies is setting up shop in Kentucky. [WFPL]

The U.S. Justice Department on Thursday announced charges against 601 people including doctors and nurses for taking part in healthcare fraud and opioid-related crimes that resulted in more than $2 billion in losses. [Reuters]

Lexington must release information about the city’s surveillance cameras and the policies surrounding their use, a judge ordered last week. [H-L]

A restaurant can turn away a customer for any number of reasons ― from not following a dress code to being incredibly loud and obnoxious. And yes, it can turn away someone who the owner believes lies for a racist president who separates children from their parents at the border and ejects transgender people from the military; it can turn away someone who, by that person’s own choice in her profession, makes people in the establishment, including employees, feel uncomfortable. What a restaurant cannot do, however, is turn away someone because they’re a member of a group the owner doesn’t like or finds offensive or immoral and which is protected under civil rights statutes. That is a violation of the law. [HuffPo]

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Bevin’s Ignorance Harms KY Bourbon

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A day after Gov. Matt Bevin dismissed European tariffs on Kentucky bourbon as harmless, U.S. Rep. Andy Barr, R-Lexington, met with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to share distillers’ concerns over exports. Barr said Friday that Bevin is wrong about the lack of impact. [H-L]

Longtime conservative columnist George Will is making a case against voting for Republicans in November’s 2018 midterm elections, arguing that House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and other GOP members of Congress “have become the president’s poodles.” [HuffPo]

Kentucky, your governor is compromised. It’s got nothing to do with Russians controlling him from behind the old Iron Curtain. No, the influence is coming from behind the Aluminum Curtain. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump’s controversial child separation policy is being carried out with the help of private businesses who have received millions of dollars in government contracts to help run the shelters where young migrants are being held away from their parents. [Yahoo]

Matt Bevin Thursday once again attacked a Franklin Circuit Judge who the previous day struck down as unconstitutional a pension reform bill passed with little public notice in the 2018 General Assembly. [Ronnie Ellis]

The U.S. Supreme Court, winding down its nine-month term, will issue rulings this week in its few remaining cases including a major one on the legality of Donald Trump’s ban on people from five Muslim-majority nations entering the country. [Reuters]

Dozens of people streamed in and out of the Steelworkers Hall on a cool April night in Ashland, Kentucky in the hills of Appalachia, where working class roots run as deep as the threads of coal that have supported the region for generations. [Ashland Independent]

Betsy DeVos has scuttled more than 1,200 civil rights probes inherited from the Obama Administration. These people are monsters. [ProPublica]

Charlotte Beals, chairperson of the Barren County School Board, announced Thursday evening after adjourning the board’s monthly meeting that she was relinquishing her position on the school board because her daughter, Catherine Beals, is being hired by the district. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The House of Representatives narrowly passed the farm bill Thursday afternoon 213-211, with 20 Republicans joining all Democrats in voting no. The House version of the farm bill dramatically cuts funding for food stamps, officially known as Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP). [ThinkProgress]

No, it’s not effective. At some point in their careers, most Kentucky state government employees are required to take “anti-harassment training.” [WFPL]

Special counsel Robert Mueller is asking that George Papadopoulos, a former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser, be sentenced in September on the false-statement felony charge he pleaded guilty to last fall. [Politico]

One of the nation’s largest hedge funds is cutting ties with Kentucky Retirement Systems, telling the state pension agency to withdraw its $68.7 million investment because it does not care for the scrutiny hedge funds are getting in Kentucky. [H-L]

Oh, look, Donald Trump duped some brown people so he’s totally not racist. That’s how the Trump base (translate: racists) feel. [HuffPo]

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Surprise! Mitch McConnell Wants To Kill The Mueller Investigation

Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd struck down Kentucky’s controversial new public pension law Wednesday. [H-L]

Julian Carroll is a confirmed monster and the fact that neither the Kentucky Democratic Party nor the Republican Party of Kentucky care to oust him is damning. [More H-L]

Conservative groups that promote themselves as “pro-life” and “pro-family” are quietly supporting the Trump administration policy of separating immigrant children from their parents at the border, or refusing to weigh in at all. [HuffPo]

Opposition to Donald Trump’s controversial policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the border crossed partisan lines Tuesday as Sen. Mitch McConnell and U.S. Rep. John Yarmuth said they would support plans to fix the problem. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump administration has likely lost track of nearly 6,000 unaccompanied migrant children, thousands more than lawmakers were alerted to last month, according to a McClatchy review of federal data. [McClatchy]

As Paul Trickel approached the front entrance of the Kentucky state Capitol Monday, he observed three people enter without incident. [Ronnie Ellis]

Just a reminder that Mitch McConnell is trying to kill the Mueller investigation. [The Hill]

Ashland City Commisioner Matt Perkins believes thousands of dollars the city pays annually to elected leaders for vehicle allowances should be re-allocated to help fund the cost of Boyd County’s new animal shelter. [Ashland Independent]

It’s a fundamental part of representative government: Politicians are elected to advocate for their constituents, and not their own interests. But in many states, laws and ethics rules allow representatives to advance bills that would benefit their own financial interests, as well. [ProPublica]

For decades, Kentucky’s own coal stoked the fires that generated most of its electricity. And while some of those power plants have shut down or switched to natural gas, their legacy remains today in the leftover coal ash that’s stored all over the commonwealth. [WFPL]

Donald Trump on Saturday repeated his false assertion that Democrats were responsible for his administration’s policy of separating migrant families apprehended at the border, sticking to a weekslong refusal to publicly accept responsibility for a widely condemned practice that has become a symbol of his crackdown on illegal immigration. [NY Times]

Barren County Fiscal Court approved the second reading of its budget ordinance Tuesday with only two sources of discussion – a summary by the judge-executive of some of the notable changes and expenses and one commentary during the public hearing portion of the court’s regular meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The economy is not robust or wonderful. The average hourly wage paid to a key group of American workers has fallen from last year when accounting for inflation, as an economy that appears strong by several measures continues to fail to create bigger paychecks, the federal government said Tuesday. [WaPo]

A Pike County man who previously pleaded guilty to shooting his brother last June is back in police custody after, Kentucky State Police say, he shot his brother again Thursday. [H-L]

New Republicanism is a disease. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley will announce on Tuesday that the United States is withdrawing from the United Nations Human Rights Council, a Trump administration source told Reuters. [HuffPo]

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Bevin: Like A Domestic Violence Perp

Andy Barr never would have taken a position contrary to Trump if he weren’t under extreme pressure. [H-L]

Former first lady Laura Bush issued a rare castigation of the Trump administration on Sunday, calling family separations at the U.S. border with Mexico “immoral” and drawing parallels to World War II internment camps. [HuffPo]

Before Wathaniel Woods was sentenced to 35 years in prison Friday for killing Louisville Metro Police Officer Nick Rodman during a police chase, Rodman’s widow told the judge how their 3-year-old son now plays with his toy police cruiser, banging it with another car and saying, “Bad guy hit my daddy. My daddy died.” [C-J/AKN]

The first legal challenge to the Trump administration’s crusade for Medicaid work requirements came before a federal judge in Washington on Friday, where attorneys representing 16 low-income Kentuckians argued they would be unlawfully stripped of Medicaid coverage should the court allow the state’s waiver to take effect in July. The groups challenging the policy said the work requirements violate Congress’ original intent for the Medicaid program and instead are a mere cover for cutting tens of thousands of people from the rolls. [TPM]

Authorities are investigating the death of a female inmate found unresponsive at the Boyd County Detention Center Saturday night. [Ashland Independent]

For most Americans, access to decent, affordable rental housing remains cruelly beyond reach. Only in 22 counties in the United States is a one-bedroom home affordable to someone working 40 hours per week at federal minimum wage. [CityLab]

County officials are looking at ways to address an issue with equipment that causes damage to roadway pavement. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Amid Donald Trump’s headaches confirming cabinet secretaries, from neophyte Rex Tillerson to conflict-prone Scott Pruitt to unprepared Betsy DeVos, all of whom squeezed through, Wilbur Ross was a tonic. [Forbes]

Attorney General Andy Beshear has asked Kentucky’s public pension systems to stop investing in companies that he says are fueling the opioid addiction epidemic in the state. [WFPL]

Historically, denaturalization has been an exceedingly rare occurrence, for good reason: by the time a person is naturalized, she has lived in this country for a number of years and has passed the hurdles of obtaining entry, legal permanent residency, and, finally, citizenship. [New Yorker]

The Berea City Council will hear the second reading of the fiscal year 2018-2019 budget on Tuesday, including proposals that could impact support for an opioid treatment program, a youth food program and tourism. [Richmond Register]

Amy McGrath doesn’t have what it takes, based on her recent half-assery, and it doesn’t seem like she has a shot. But who knows? [NY Times]

A Democratic lobbyist has been convicted of bribing Kentucky’s No. 2 law enforcement officer in a case voters are likely to see in political ads for next year’s race for governor. [H-L]

In the days and weeks following the suicides of celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and handbag designer Kate Spade, a chorus of social media users urged people with depression to not be “afraid” to ask for help. But for most Americans, fear isn’t the thing that stands in the way of therapy. It’s having no one to turn to. [HuffPo]

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