Hold On To Health Care While You’ve Got It & Let Mitch McConnell Have An Earful

Attorney General Andy Beshear announced Wednesday that his office plans to file two to 10 lawsuits against drug manufacturers, distributors and retailers that allegedly contributed to the state’s drug overdose crisis by illegally marketing and selling opioids. [H-L]

As President Dumpster Fire prepares for this week’s G-20 summit, his European partners aren’t hiding their disillusionment with how his “America First” approach to foreign policy has damaged the liberal world order. [HuffPo]

We’re wiling to give anyone a chance but the last four or five were beyond disastrous. How long are we gonna hold our breath? In his first official media briefing as acting superintendent, Marty Pollio on Monday morning reiterated his push to improve the climate in Jefferson County Public Schools. [C-J/AKN]

More than 30 “disappointed and alarmed” senators penned a letter chastising civil rights enforcement at the Department of Education. [ProPublica]

Charitable organizations feeding the hungry could see an increase in the number of people they serve if a cut in food stamps is approved by Congress. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Can you imagine if anyone in Kentucky put pressure on Mitch McConnell to stand up for his constituents? [The Hill]

A new housing development in southwest Morehead is expected to bring 48 living units to the area by the end of 2018. [The Morehead News]

A 19-year-old American soldier has died in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province from wounds received in an attack, the Pentagon said on Wednesday. [Reuters]

In the wake of mounting overdoses and deaths from the opioid-addiction crisis sweeping across the U.S., drugmakers are racing to come up with safer painkillers. Companies are highly motivated to create alternatives to the $4 billion opioid market. The federal government is cracking down on lax prescriptions that contribute to many thousands of deaths a year and has started to block the sale of medications it considers unsafe. [Richmond Register]

The US has confirmed that North Korea tested a long-range missile which some experts believe could reach Alaska. [BBC]

With three weeks of work down, Appalachia Service Project volunteers continue to lend a helping hand with local home repairs. [Ashland Independent]

For the 15th year, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) spent July 4 marching through this town of 1,331, a short boat ride away from Canada. She walked and waved, next to marching bands and Shriner-driven lobster boats. Her constituents cheered — and then asked whether she would vote against repealing the Affordable Care Act. [WaPo]

You don’t say. Teaching assistant Kelvin Holt watched as a preschool student fell to the back of a cafeteria line during breakfast in Killeen, Texas, as if trying to hide. [H-L]

A journalist who revealed the racist, anti-Semitic internet troll behind the CNN beat-down video that President Dumpster Fire shared says he’s facing a barrage of death threats. And he warns that the president is fueling a violent, anti-media conversation online. [HuffPo]

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We Love Watching Frankfort Squirm

Guess who was paying attention! Fayette County Public Schools students who had been paying reduced meal prices will eat free in 2017-2018 under a waiver approved Monday by the school board. [H-L]

THIS is the crap Republicans like Matt Bevin and Scott Jennings are proud of. [HuffPo]

The short answer? No. Can food help reconnect a racially divided Louisville? [C-J/AKN]

If the most recent former president had ever done such a thing, Republicans would have revolted. Attacking one of the most successful and revolutionary businesses and one of the most respected media outlets on earth is treasonous. Trump on Wednesday attacked The Washington Post and its owner, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, for its coverage of him and his administration. [The Hill]

Bob Stivers and Jeff Hoover really think they’re untouchable these days and they’re apparently too stupid to realize just how risky that is. These two homophobes have no idea how much information people like me have obtained from being deep in their circles the past decade. My research file on Stivers alone is larger than the Kentucky Democratic Party’s file on all of the 2016 Republican candidates combined. I got to know their assistants, became close friends with their aides and directors, circled their political operations in their home counties, built trust with gobs of their colleagues (many of those colleagues oppose their positions of leadership), have developed a network of sources. I was there long before anyone else and took all kinds of heat from Democrats – from being accused of being a Republican (I’m an Independent) to dating Holly Harris. But you know what? I was there, putting in sweat equity to develop a realm of intelligence the KDP could never, ever envision. Yet these hucksters continue to run around like untouchable buffoons. They didn’t realize what I was doing for a decade. They’re still oblivious. And I was out in the open with it! Writing about it! Unreal. [Ronnie Ellis]

Without close family in the United States, Elly and her husband had few options for getting permission to immigrate to America from Iran. So when they won a U.S. government lottery last September for a so-called “diversity visa” allowing them to resettle in the United States, the couple was thrilled. [Reuters]

If Jeff Hoover is meddling with Transportation, you know something fishy is about to go down. Faced with declining road fund revenues and a decaying infrastructure system, House Speaker Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, Wednesday appointed a task force to examine the need for roads and bridges and ways to finance them. [More Ronnie Ellis]

The government had planned to share data with researchers on patients enrolled in Medicare Advantage health plans. Then, suddenly, it didn’t. [ProPublica]

Matt Bevin is apparently too stupid to realize Bertram’s brother, Frank, also works for him. It’s not just about the wife of Bob Stivers. These people are painfully dumb. [Even More Ronnie Ellis]

Paul Manafort, who was forced out as President Trump’s campaign chairman last summer after five months of infighting and criticism about his business dealings with pro-Russian interests, disclosed Tuesday that his consulting firm had received more than $17 million over two years from a Ukrainian political party with links to the Kremlin. [NY Times]

Good. Louisville and Kentucky MUST continue to lose revenue while Republicans are legislative homophobic hatred. Hopefully entire economies will dry up to the point of no return so these backward-ass bigots like Bob Stivers and Jeff Hoover will be forced to reverse their nonsense. [WFPL]

A TIME magazine with Trump on the cover hangs in his golf clubs. So of course it’s fake. [WaPo]

Matt Bevin is the kind of guy who’d tell a homeless person starving to death to “get a damn job” and not give them a second thought. Kentucky’s Republican governor said he reluctantly supports the Senate’s plan to replace the Affordable Care Act and blamed its shaky prospects for passage on “mushy moderates” who “don’t have enough spine” to pass the bill. [H-L]

Trump administration officials on Thursday announced guidelines for implementing the president’s ban on travel and immigration from six majority-Muslim countries, which the Supreme Court decided to partially reinstate this week. [HuffPo]

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Kentucky To Get More Discriminatory On The 29th

Fugitive lawyer Eric C. Conn fled the country using a fake passport and help from someone overseas who has given him a job to support himself while on the lam, Conn told the Herald-Leader in an email exchange over the weekend. [H-L]

Thousands of federal workers at the Interior Department could soon find themselves out of a job as the Trump administration looks to reorganize the agency and cut its funding by 12 percent. [HuffPo]

Maybe a tiny little man with gay people really close to him in his family ought not complain hypocritically? These New Republican bigots are the reason Kentucky will remain forever in the dark, our economy will never rise with the rest of the nation and our children will never reach their full potential. Though, it’s fascinating that A Kentucky Newspaper is STILL neglecting to mention that Rand Paul opposes the Senate health plan because it doesn’t go far enough in cutting benefits. [C-J/AKN]

Don’t come for Joe Biden unless he sends for you. [NY Magazine]

Laws dealing with Bible literacy in schools, religious freedom, nuclear power, charter schools and making it a hate crime to assault police officers go into effect on June 29 in Kentucky. [Ronnie Ellis]

The Trump administration has taken little meaningful action to prevent Russian hacking, leaking and disruption in the next national election in 2018, despite warnings from intelligence officials that it will happen again, officials and experts told NBC News. [NBC News]

The Ashland Fire Department responded to three overdoses in the city, with all three patients being transported to the hospital, during its most recent reporting period. [Ashland Independent]

Not only did the Obama Administration try to do something about Russia, they pushed for sanctions. It was Republicans like Mitch McConnell who fought the Administration at every turn. Because Russian meddling benefited Republicans. And it’s the Trump Administration that’s pushed to reverse and weaken sanctions. [CBS News]

It’s been 17 years since Josh Gentry sustained a severe brain injury in a crash that nearly cost him his life. Josh was a passenger in the backseat of a pickup that wrecked on Ky. 249 at the Skagg’s Creek Bridge in Barren County. [Richmond Register]

The Trump administration opposes a bid to use unclaimed money from a legal settlement over the government’s infamous Tuskegee syphilis study to fund a museum honoring victims of the research project. [Associated Press]

Barren County Middle School students assisted with a study on Thursday in which Mammoth Cave National Park is participating to help determine mercury levels in lakes, rivers and streams across the country. [Glasgow Daily Times]

“About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them,” Carol Foyler, another student, said. “I couldn’t believe he was going after Trump like that.” [New Yorker]

The Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission unanimously voted Wednesday to appeal a recent federal court ruling that allows lobbyists to give gifts and campaign donations to state lawmakers. [H-L]

Senior officials across the government became convinced in January that the incoming national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, had become vulnerable to Russian blackmail. [NY Times]

The city of Ferguson, Missouri, has settled a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the parents of Michael Brown, the unarmed black 18-year-old who was fatally shot by former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in 2014. [HuffPo]

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Oh Noes, Gambling Is Going To Ruin Everything Forever And Ever! Amen

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted Tuesday to approve plans for Churchill Downs to build a $50 million to $60 million gambling parlor at a former training track in Louisville. [H-L]

The coroner’s office in Cincinnati, Ohio, launched an investigation into the death of Otto Warmbier, the 22-year-old American student who died Monday just days after being released from a North Korean prison. [HuffPo]

Translation: Scott Jennings called his friends at the paper and told them he was offered a job by Donald Trump but turned it down. [C-J/AKN]

Former Attorney General Eric Holder is poised to take a more active role in opposing President Trump, telling Yahoo News in an interview published Tuesday that “now is the time to be more visible” — including weighting a 2020 presidential bid. [The Hill]

Anti-hunger advocates fear the $193 billion reduction President Donald Trump proposes to the federal food stamp program over the next 10 years will hurt millions of needy Americans who rely on it for their daily sustenance. [Richmond Register]

Opponents of President Donald Trump’s ban on travelers from six Muslim-majority countries again urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday to reject his bid to revive it, saying his administration undermined its own arguments by amending the order last week. [Reuters]

Members heaved a sigh of relief when Michelle Veach told the Ashland Rotary taxes will not be going up this year. During their regular Monday meeting, members learned about city finances and the proposed budget that will get a first reading and vote Thursday at the city commission meeting. [Ashland Independent]

The pressure is growing to force President Trump to turn over his tax returns. The other day, for example, 200 Congressmen filed a suit in federal court, arguing that voters and lawmakers have a right to know whether Trump’s businesses are violating the Constitution’s emolument clause, which bars the president from accepting payments from foreign countries. [ProPublica]

In the wake of former Jailer Matt Mutter’s retirement and subsequent return as chief deputy jailer, a magistrate who voiced opposition to the action has proposed a county ordinance that would prevent such an action in the future. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Trump, who came into office courting labor unions and vowing to stand up for American workers, is taking a major step to alter the direction of federal labor policy, positioning the National Labor Relations Board to overturn a series of high-profile Obama-era decisions. [NY Times]

In a move to be more fiscally-conservative, the University of Louisville is suspending a contract designed to make the school’s facilities more energy efficient. The news comes only weeks after U of L touted the progress it’s made reducing the university’s greenhouse gas emissions — progress which was bolstered by the millions of dollars spent upgrading lighting, insulation and mechanical systems on the school’s three campuses. [WFPL]

A bipartisan bill extending financial sanctions on Russia and Iran and making it more difficult for Trump to ease Russian sanctions has encountered a major procedural snag, threatening its quick passage into law and prompting Democrats to accuse House Republicans of protecting Trump. [WaPo]

As students walked across the stage to receive their diplomas throughout Kentucky this spring, they could be confident they were entering a job-seekers’ market. [H-L]

In February, a cadre of Republican elder statesmen unveiled their plan to put a tax on carbon emissions, arguing that “mounting evidence of climate change is growing too strong to ignore.” That plan got the backing of Big Oil on Tuesday, as Exxon Mobil Corp., BP, Royal Dutch Shell and Total announced a new campaign to push Congress to consider passing a carbon tax. [HuffPo]

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Matt Bevin Continues To Embarrass KY

Nearly two years after rejecting requests to remove a controversial statue of Confederate President Jefferson Davis in Kentucky’s Capitol Rotunda, a state panel that promised to produce educational materials to help put the statue in historical context is only now beginning its work. [H-L]

Donald Trump, apparently confirming his disregard for the risks of global climate change, reportedly told the mayor of a small Chesapeake Bay island that could soon disappear to erosion and rising seas that there’s no cause for concern. Trump phoned James “Ooker” Eskridge, the mayor of Tangier, Virginia, on Monday, a few days after CNN aired a story about the impacts of climate change on the island in the middle of the bay, The Daily Times in Salisbury, Maryland, reports. Trump “said not to worry about sea-level rise,” Eskridge told the newspaper. “He said, ‘Your island has been there for hundreds of years, and I believe your island will be there for hundreds more.’” [HuffPo]

Dan Johnson is just gross. Metro Councilwoman Jessica Green told council leadership that fellow Democrat Dan Johnson groped her and then laughed about it last week. [C-J/AKN]

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has recommended to President Donald Trump reducing the size of the Bears Ears National Monument in Utah, according to a copy of the recommendation seen by Reuters on Monday. [Reuters]

Matt Bevin is right that we’re mocking him and that we hate god. We hate HIS god – a hateful, vengeful, racist, homophobic, hates-the-poor god. He’s so out-of-touch that he has no idea law enforcement, religious leaders, Republicans, Democrats and even members of his own staff are criticizing his idiocy. [WFPL]

At a meeting in March, a lead analyst in the VA’s compensation service was critical of the media, scientists and the VA’s own administrative tribunal for taking positions that differ from his. The VA said his comments “did not fully or accurately reflect VA’s position” but also said his quotes were being taken out of context. [ProPublica]

While heroin and other opioids continue to draw headlines and the attention of political figures, methamphetamine has made a comeback in Madison County. [Richmond Register]

In a new legal challenge to Trump, Maryland and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit Monday alleging that his failure to shed his private businesses has undermined public trust and violated constitutional bans against self-dealing. [NY Times]

Children in Boyd County are being fed this summer through meal programs at several sites. [Ashland Independent]

Seems like a good time to revisit this. The lawyer gave Donald Trump a note, written in Trump’s own handwriting. He asked Trump to read it aloud. Trump may not have realized it yet, but he had walked into a trap. [WaPo]

State revenues were up in May over last year but probably not enough to head off a likely budget shortfall for the fiscal year which ends June 30. [Ronnie Ellis]

Rand Paul was in the cage waiting for one more turn at the plate when shots rand down on the field, hitting Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) and at least four other people. [The Hill]

A Pikeville psychologist was convicted Monday of taking part in a massive disability fraud scheme in Eastern Kentucky. [H-L]

Donald Trump has given Defense Secretary Jim Mattis the authority to set troop levels in Afghanistan, a U.S. official told Reuters on Tuesday, opening the door for future troop increases requested by the U.S. commander. [HuffPo]

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Poor? Got A Sick Kid? Sick Parent? Mitch McConnell Is Taking Steps To Speed Up Their Death By Gutting Health Care

If you believe Matt Bevin or the Republicans have an actual, workable tax play? You’re delusional. Kentucky’s razor-thin budget does not have room for magical thinking, for ideological experiments. If he goes into this special session with solid plans for business tax cuts without an equally firm, mathematically solid commitment to make up the difference, and more, by cleaning up thousands of breaks and exemptions, Kentucky and its people will suffer. [H-L]

Multiple shots were fired on a group of Republican lawmakers in Alexandria, Virginia on Wednesday morning and witnesses say that several people were hit. [HuffPo]

Remember the shitty people Holly Harris works for? The Kochs? Here’s what those hucksters are up to these days. A group affiliated with the Koch brothers’ powerful political network is leading an online campaign against Mayor Greg Fischer’s $5.4 million proposal to expand Louisville’s ultra-fast internet access. [C-J/AKN]

Russia’s cyberattack on the U.S. electoral system before Donald Trump’s election was far more widespread than has been publicly revealed, including incursions into voter databases and software systems in almost twice as many states as previously reported. [Bloomberg]

While Kentucky was one of eight states to see an increase in students participating in summer nutrition programs, it still provided lunches to fewer than 1 in 10 children, according to a newly released report. [Richmond Register]

A resolution condemning white supremacy caused chaos at the Southern Baptist Convention. Because of course some of those people are racist as can be. [The Atlantic]

This ought to end remarkably badly… New county tax dollars chiefly generated by a Marriott-brand hotel can officially be captured by the City of Ashland for 20 years and used to fund more development projects. [Ashland Independent]

The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday ruled against President Trump’s so-called travel ban, delivering another blow to the administration as it waits for the Supreme Court to decide whether to intervene. [The Hill]

Morehead State University students can expect a 4.92 percent increase to undergraduate tuition for the upcoming semester. [The Morehead News]

U.S. immigration authorities are arresting Iraqi immigrants ordered deported for serious crimes, the U.S. government said on Monday, after Iraq agreed to accept U.S. deportees as part of a deal to remove it from President Donald Trump’s travel ban. [Reuters]

It’s borderline impossible not to be 100 times better than Scott Jennings and his racist “jokes”. A Glasgow resident, attorney Bobby Richardson, has been chosen to emcee the annual Fancy Farm Picnic — a fundraiser for Saint Jerome Catholic Church that takes place in early August in southwestern Kentucky attracting barbecue lovers and politicians alike. [Glasgow Daily Times]

You can thank Mitch McConnell for disabling the American health care system and potentially killing millions of poor people. So that’s fun. Senate Republicans are aggressively trying to rein in expectations for their Obamacare repeal effort, wary of blowing a deadline or falling short of 50 votes on a promise that has driven the GOP’s political strategy for much of the past decade. [Politico]

Bam Carney is no more powerful than me. Suggesting otherwise is absurd. And that lying asshole was super-involved in Matt Bevin’s executive orders! These people aren’t just stupid, they’re liars. [H-L]

Attorney General Jeff Sessions repeatedly dodged questions on Tuesday about his conversations with Donald Trump, broadly claiming at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing that his talks with Trump were shielded by ill-defined protections. He argued that it would be inappropriate to speak publicly about confidential discussions with his boss, but struggled to explain the legal backing for his stance since Trump has not formally invoked executive privilege. [HuffPo]

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Bevin & Republicans Fear Andy Beshear

Disgraced Pikeville attorney Eric Conn spent most of Friday in Lexington working on testimony against another figure in the $550 million social security fraud case that left him facing 12 years in prison. [H-L]

Authorities believe fugitive lawyer Eric C. Conn is still in the country after escaping court-ordered supervision Friday evening and are offering a $20,000 reward for information that helps catch him. [H-L]

Former FBI Director James Comey said Thursday that the White House had lied and defamed him and the FBI by saying he had lost the faith of bureau. [HuffPo]

A federal judge has struck down key parts of the ethics code governing the Kentucky General Assembly including its provision that bans lawmakers from accepting “anything of value” from a lobbyist. [C-J/AKN]

The Trump International Hotel received about $270,000 from a lobbying campaign tied to the government of Saudi Arabia last year, according to a filing submitted to the Justice Department last week. The filing from the MSLGroup, a public relations firm, shows that the group spent about $270,000 at the Trump International Hotel while conducting lobbying efforts on behalf of the Saudi Arabian government. [TPM]

The Berea City Council heard first reading of its 2017-19 budget that includes 2-percent raises for employees and an 8-percent rise in employee health insurance costs. [Richmond Register]

Like autumn leaves, sponsored Cadillacs, Ferraris and Maseratis descend on the Trump National Golf Club in Westchester County, New York, in September for the Eric Trump Foundation golf invitational. Year after year, the formula is consistent: 18 holes of perfectly trimmed fairways with a dose of Trumpian tackiness, including Hooters waitresses and cigar spreads, followed by a clubhouse dinner, dates encouraged. The crowd leans toward real estate insiders, family friends and C-list celebrities, such as former baseball slugger Darryl Strawberry and reality housewife (and bankruptcy-fraud felon) Teresa Giudice. [Forbes]

Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear is again challenging Republican Gov. Matt Bevin’s “absolute power” to reorganize state boards, this time asking him to rescind orders last week reorganizing several education boards. [Ronnie Ellis]

Kentucky – specifically Louisville – racists get mad when you point out the crap their kids are saying is racist. [BuzzFeed]

Kentucky is waiting to hear if the federal Department of Homeland Security will allow the state an extension on implementing a federally compliant “REAL ID” driver’s license. [Ronnie Ellis]

This terrifies Republicans and they’ll have panic attacks over it. Even though it was really an idea Richard Nixon once had. [Fast Company]

A new program coming to Eastern Kentucky University’s campus will offer opportunities for single parents to continue their education. [The Morehead News]

Despite June being recognized globally as Pride month, Orange Hate Monkey Trump has committed to headlining the “Road to Majority” conference on Thursday, June 8. This evangelical gathering is hosted by the Faith and Freedom Coalition, a conservative organization whose chairperson Ralph Reed has previously spoken out against marriage equality. [OUT]

Remember the Aramark prison meal scandal? Those were the days. Eastern Kentucky University has decided to pay Aramark Corp. $7.6 million a year over the next five years to operate its custodial and grounds services, cutting 180 employees in those departments. [Linda Blackford]

Former FBI Director James Comey said he leaked details of an Oval Office meeting with Donald Trump to prompt an independent investigation of Russia’s possible collusion with the Trump campaign. [HuffPo]

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