Here Are Scott Jennings’ Remarks. Early.

Scott Jennings, who once pleaded the 5th in order to avoid incriminating himself in the George W. Bush email scandal, still doesn’t understand how embargoes work. Pro-tip: They only work when you arrange them. A blanket directive from your PR firm won’t cut it.

UPDATE – Right off the bat, Jennings started with a racist joke. And he was dumb enough to bring up the Clinton email mess when he has his own very real email scandal on his record. *END UPDATE*

So here are his remarks at Fancy Farm:

Thank you Mark and Father Venters, and welcome, everyone to the 136th annual Fancy Farm picnic! How about a round of applause for Mark and Lori Wilson … another great job, guys, thanks for what you do.

What an honor it is to be here! I love this event and I look forward to it every year. Politicos from across Kentucky come here to show off some personality and creativity.

And to be honest, it is a little intimidating being up here.

I mean, last year Matt Jones of Kentucky Sports Radio was the emcee and he was great.

I wish I could just read his jokes. You know, copy and paste his stuff.

But of course, plagiarism is a big no-no in the political business.

So instead, let me just say that…on behalf of my husband Barack and my daughters Sasha and Malia, it’s an honor to be here.

###

To those watching at home, let me introduce you to the most important players in today’s event – this huge crowd!

First, in this corner, please welcome…THE REPUBLICANS!

And, this corner, please welcome…THE DEMOCRATS!

And, finally, let me introduce the most important people of all … the DEMOCRATS who vote REPUBLICAN every November!

It’s ok guys, everybody knows what you do in the voting booth. There’s no time like the present to come out of the shadows.

###

It’s true, Kentucky is a real two-party state these days and a lot of Democrats are actually voting Republican. There are three issues motivating this migration:

Hillary. Rodham. Clinton.

Man, she’ll say anything to get elected. I don’t want to say Hillary is pandering to get votes in Kentucky, but I’m not totally convinced she’ll send Bobby Knight to Guantanamo Bay.

If she does pull this off, the only thing less safe than our national security information will be the White House interns. Look out! Slick Willie on the loose!

###

Hillary’s opponent is, for now, Donald Trump.

I don’t want to talk too much about The Donald, mainly because I’ve been told that every time someone makes a joke about Trump, an angel gets deported.

Oh wait, I misread it.

That’s “Ángel gets deported!”

###

Can you believe what’s going with the Russians? Trump says they ought to be hacking Hillary’s emails. The Democrats say Vladimir Putin is trying to meddle in our elections?

Now I don’t know if that’s true, Jamie Comer, but if folks start handing out vodka instead of bourbon to win School Board races in your neck of the woods we’ll know something’s up.

But I have to say, Trump picking Governor Mike Pence for Vice President was genius. In Indiana, Mike Pence wanted to start a state-run news agency! A political operative would write all the news stories.

You know, the way it works over in North Korea. Or at MSNBC.

###

Governor Matt Bevin, good to see you today and welcome back to Fancy Farm!

There is no doubt, Governor, that you are getting things done in Frankfort.

After eight years of Steve Beshear, a lot of folks forgot what it was like when a Governor, you know, actually tried.

Now Governor, it is true, a lot of Republicans were kind of hard on you back in 2014 when you first came along. Now, I wasn’t one of them…but since we are at church today I’ll go ahead and ask for forgiveness.

You know the Establishment isn’t very good at predicting the future. Heck, this time last summer I was all in for Jeb Bush!

The truth is, Governor, you are doing a terrific job.

Just ask Attorney General Andy Beshear. He thinks your criminal justice reforms are terrific – because of you, some of the people in Andy’s office might actually get to vote for him in the next election.

Now Andy isn’t here today. But if you are watching at home, brother, I’m just kidding around. Don’t sue me! We’ve known each other for a very long time. You are the Beshear I actually get along with.

I’m just waiting for Governor Bevin to rename Lake Beshear over there by Dawson Springs, where your Dad and I were born.

Maybe…Lake Obamacare. Or Lake Pension Shortfall. Who knows?

###

Senator Mitch McConnell, good to see you here today.

An event like this is perfect for a guy like him. When Kentuckians think entertainment and excitement they think of two words: Mitch. McConnell.

They actually took a survey of the most exciting, dynamic senators. Senator McConnell came in right ahead of Tim Kaine, which is no small feat.

By the way, thank you for releasing an audio version of your memoir. It changed our lives in the Jennings Household. Thanks to the sound of your voice, our little baby Thatcher has never slept better.

I’m just kidding…because I can! Mitch McConnell is my old boss, of course. And apparently I have no interest in ever working for him again, so I will just keep going here.

In all seriousness, the Senator has been a true mentor. I’ll never forget what he told me at the end of the last campaign. He looked me right in the eye, shook my hand and said “Scott, if you ever talk to the Louisville Courier-Journal about anything you’ve seen here, I’ll kill you.”

That’s actually not a joke.

###

Speaking of the Senate, Rand Paul, good to see you back at Fancy Farm.

Now Rand is disappointed he’s not running against Hillary right now, but running for Senate from Kentucky is far better than running for President.

One good thing … at the debates, your podium is in the center of the stage rather than falling off the end of it!

Oh, Jim Gray. I forgot you were there. And apparently so did the rest of your party.

Hello and welcome to Fancy Farm.

I don’t know much about old Jim over here except he’s spent most of his time as Mayor trying to fill a huge hole somebody dug in the middle of Lexington.

Here’s a thought … you may need a place to bury your political career after this election.

###

Again, I want to welcome everyone watching at home on KET. Bill Goodman has microphones all over the picnic grounds to capture the sounds of Fancy Farm.

It’s sort of the same in Frankfort these days, where the FBI has microphones all over the cooperating witnesses.

Which reminds me! Alison Grimes passes along her regrets. She couldn’t be here today because her husband is about to go away on a long trip.

Funny, I heard her Dad may also be going away for a long time.

Want to scare a Democrat in Frankfort these days? Sneak up behind one and say: “You have the right to remain silent!”

###

Before we get started, I want to take a moment to recognize some people who come here every year. They endure the heat and the hecklers so we can enjoy our First Amendment rights.

I am talking about the Kentucky State Police, the U.S. Capitol Police, and the local officers from all over Western Kentucky.

To all law enforcement officers here today, thank you. And, also, we thank your families for enduring the stress that comes with supporting the THIN BLUE LINE.

Now more than ever, we owe these men and women our gratitude.

###

Ok, ok, let’s get on with it. These politicians are ready to go.

Trust me when I tell you, what these folks are about to do is incredibly hard.

You want easy? Go hack Hillary’s email. That’s easy.

Speaking here at Fancy Farm… that takes guts!

Now, let me go over a couple of ground rules.

First, no noisemakers. If you use a noisemaker we will personally have Donald Trump tweet what a SAD! PATHETIC! LOSER! you are.

We know you are going to hoot and holler. Just be civil, and remember to use clean language and good manners.

We are all Americans, we are all Kentuckians and we all need to remember to love thy neighbor.

Now, ladies and gentlemen, let’s get down to business and see what these politicians have to say here at Fancy Farm!

###

Scott is busy defending Donald Trump’s racism, homophobia, transphobia. So it’s fun to see him emcee Fancy Farm.

As always, there’s this, this and this.

And remember – Democrats didn’t show up at Fancy Fart (not really a typo) because their assistance isn’t needed. The Republican Party of Kentucky doesn’t need the Democrats to help them burn down their barn with Trump-style racism and hate.

Remember Pre-9/11 Gary Condit? It’s Gary Condit Flashback Time!

The University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital is ranked No. 1 in Kentucky in U.S. News and World Report’s Best Hospitals survey, which was released Tuesday. [H-L]

Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s campaign chairman, has had success dealing with hard-to-manage dictatorial types, from Imelda Marcos of the Philippines, to Jonas Savimbi of Angola, to Victor Yanukovych of Ukraine. [HuffPo]

The State Plumbing Code Committee has voted to suspend a decades-old rule that business leaders and developers had long viewed as a major impediment to investing in major construction projects. [C-J/AKN]

An attorney for Gary Condit, the former congressman who had an extramarital affair with Washington intern Chandra Levy before her 2001 murder, said on Friday that prosecutors had told the ex-lawmaker that he was not a suspect in the case despite their decision to drop charges against another man. [Reuters]

Acts of kindness towards the Rowan County Sheriff’s Department have not gone unnoticed. Sheriff Matt Sparks says he thanks those who have been showing their support over the last few months during a difficult time for law enforcement across the country. [The Morehead News]

In Syria’s civil war, it’s dangerous to even treat the wounded. Since the beginning of the civil war, the Syrian government has killed hundreds of medical personnel, and dozens of doctors have been assassinated by ISIS. The few doctors who dare to treat the casualties have been forced to work in secret. [ProPublica]

You are Letcher County, Kentucky. You are rural, mountainous, and in the heart of the central Appalachian coalfields. Your economy is not in good shape. Fox News has called your largest town “the poster child for the war on coal.” You are offered funds to build a new federal prison. It could bring jobs but also brings up troubling moral issues. What do you do? [WFPL]

Members of the Indiana State Teachers Association will rally near the annual convention of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in Indianapolis Friday afternoon where Republican vice presidential nominee Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is speaking on Friday. ALEC, whose members are a mix of representatives of large corporations and legislators, is a group known for drafting model legislation for conservative lawmakers. [ThinkProgress]

If you showed up at the Jeffersontown Police Department with heroin, needles, or prescriptions you might think officers would put you behind bars. But as of Monday, the department is opening its doors to addicts as part of its Angel Initiative. [WAVE3]

Just when it seems that Donald Trump could not display more ignorance and bad judgment or less of a moral compass, he comes up with another ignominy or two. This weekend he denigrated the parents of a fallen American military hero and suggested that if elected he might recognize Russia’s claims to Ukraine and end sanctions. [NY Times]

Atlanta-based United Parcel Service Inc. is enhancing its educational assistance programs for employees at its Worldport facility in Louisville. [Business First]

Donald Trump asked a woman with a crying baby to leave his rally in Ashburn, Virginia, on Tuesday. The GOP nominee initially suggested that he did not mind the disruption. [Politico]

If you’ve yet to read this story, put on your crazy glasses. A report of a car full of men in body armor with semi-automatic weapons brought Lexington police to the Walmart on Richmond Road on Saturday night. Officers found two men, one in body armor, a 20-year-old woman and a six-month old baby. [H-L]

A Donald Trump spokeswoman Tuesday night opened a new front in the GOP nominee’s campaign of insults against the parents of a Muslim-American war hero, this time blaming President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton for the soldier’s death. Khan was killed in 2004 in Iraq, protecting fellow soldiers from a car bomb. You might recall that Obama did not take office until 2009. [HuffPo]

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

Which News Dumps Will Hit Today?

This is what you call good old boy butthurt. Officials with the Bluegrass Area Development District said Tuesday they will continue to pay staff through July as they fight the state’s attempt to take away millions of dollars in federal and state funding for aging and workforce programs by Friday. [H-L]

Robert Murray, owner of the country’s largest private coal company, wasted no time pointing the finger when he announced plans earlier this week to lay off as many as 4,400 workers, or 80 percent of his workforce. [HuffPo]

Matt Bevin’s halfwit staffers spent years attacking Steve Beshear for not appointing enough minorities for the University of Louisville’s board. So what do they do? They don’t find any minority appointees. Fascinating how these people operate. Dumber than you could have ever imaged. Not corrupt – dumb. Deeply, deeply dumb. [C-J/AKN]

A review of campaign finance records by The Hill shows that the practice of skirting or openly flouting the contractor ban has become widespread in both congressional and presidential politics. [The Hill]

Any hopes for a better reception for Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposed changes to expanded Medicaid in Kentucky vanished pretty quickly at a second public hearing here Wednesday. [Ronnie Ellis]

South Carolina fire officials decided to make sprinklers mandatory in new homes. Homebuilders overturned the rule with help behind the scenes from Gov. Nikki Haley. It was one more win for an industry that has spent millions of dollars in state capitals to block a life-saving upgrade included in the nation’s model building code. [ProPublica]

Liberal state lawmakers have for 16 years pushed for a bill that would amend Kentucky’s civil rights code to protect people from discrimination in the workplace, housing and other areas based on their sexual orientation. [WFPL]

According to experts, white supremacy has experienced a renaissance in the last two years, reaching levels of popularity and influence not seen since the late-1960s. [ThinkProgress]

The Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center in Hazard was presented with a $2,500 check from the County Clerk’s Association on Monday to help the center fund an Independence Day celebration for citizens who truly represent our nation’s liberty and patriotic pride; our veterans. [Hazard Herald]

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Wednesday rejected criticism of his campaign tactics, in a wide-ranging speech defending his team’s use of a Jewish star and his own praise of the late Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. [Reuters]

The Bank of Harlan has been acquired by Monticello Bankshares Inc. in a deal that will see the merger of the two financial institutions. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

Donald Trump has to be one of the dumbest people in history. [Politico]

State alcohol regulators prepared a new map a couple of months ago showing Kentucky’s jumble of legally dry, wet and partially wet cities and counties, but it’s already out of date. [H-L]

The Iraqi man who was filmed attacking Saddam Hussein’s statue with a sledgehammer when U.S. troops stormed into Baghdad in 2003 said Iraq was in a better shape under his rule and George W. Bush and Tony Blair should be put on trial “for ruining” it. [HuffPo]

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

Maybe Mitch Isn’t In Love With Trump?

The Republican leader in the Senate says most candidates for president have released their tax documents as presumptive GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump insists he’ll wait until after an IRS audit. [H-L]

Two Boston brothers accused of urinating on and beating a homeless Mexican man and telling police “Donald Trump was right: All these illegals need to be deported,” were sentenced to prison on Monday, prosecutors said. [HuffPo]

An atheist group has been stymied in its planned billboard campaign in Kentucky to protest the controversial $92 million Noah’s Ark replica theme park, set to open in July. [C-J/AKN]

From the time we began reporting on the archive provided to us in Hong Kong by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, we sought to fulfill his two principal requests for how the materials should be handled: that they be released in conjunction with careful reporting that puts the documents in context and makes them digestible to the public, and that the welfare and reputations of innocent people be safeguarded. As time has gone on, The Intercept has sought out new ways to get documents from the archive into the hands of the public, consistent with the public interest as originally conceived. [The Intercept]

A 48-year-old Ashland man was indicted on a bigamy charge after he refused to divorce his first wife and married a second. [Ashland Independent]

President Obama inherited two wars from his predecessor, George W. Bush, and has struggled to wind them down. American troops are still in both Iraq and Afghanistan, but their missions have changed and there are far fewer troops in combat than at the heights of those wars a decade ago. [NY Times]

Glasgow Independent Schools Board of Education presented its evaluation of Superintendent Sean Howard for the 2015-16 school year Monday night in its regular meeting at Glasgow High School. [Glasgow Daily Times]

The rich world has got used to health and longevity getting better, and death rates falling for everyone. But over the past few years, data has been accumulating which suggests that this trend has stopped for poorly-educated, white Americans. [BBC]

Disappointed. Sad. Hurt. Shocked. Lorrina Mabry White says she’s experienced all of these emotions and many others since losing her job last month at Maysville Community and Technical College. [The Morehead News]

Donald Trump spent his first two weeks as the presumptive Republican presidential nominee changing his stances on a number of policy issues, sometimes multiple times. That got an interesting defense from one of his senior advisers on Friday. [ThinkProgress]

Only 9.1 percent of Americans lacked health insurance last year, the lowest uninsured rate on record. [Business First]

Millions of Americans live with the possibility that, at any moment, their wages or the cash in their bank accounts could be seized over an old debt. It’s an easily ignored part of America’s financial system, in part due to a common attitude that people who don’t pay their debts deserve what’s coming to them. [ProPublica]

Kentucky transportation officials have started an online service for people to renew their license plates. [H-L]

More than 7 million previously uninsured Americans gained health coverage in 2015, the second full year of the Obamacare coverage expansion, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [HuffPo]

Need cheap mobile phone service? Maybe even for a backup cell phone? I’m talking $6/mo cheap? Use our Ting referral code and we’ll all get a sweet credit. You get $25 — enough for a couple months of service to determine whether you like it. Both CDMA and GSM options. For worriers: no, you don’t get identified to us if you use our link… so please consider letting us know if you do! [Ting]

Ting not your thing? Want to be on the AT&T network with unlimited talk and text and cheap data? Join Cricket and you’ll get a $25 referral credit, $50 port-in credit and another $50 if you’re leaving T-Mobile. [Cricket]

Andy Beshear’s Big Conflict Remains Hot

The University of Kentucky will lose $12.6 million next year thanks to a 4.5 percent cut in state funding. At the same time, student financial aid and scholarships will increase by more than $20 million, and fixed costs for things such as utilities and employee health insurance are on the rise. [H-L]

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) has not been shy about his disdain for the mainstream media. But the Democratic presidential hopeful has rarely, if ever, articulated it as bluntly as he did in an interview that aired on MSNBC’s “The Rachel Maddow Show” on Friday night. Sanders called out the network for its corporate character in a novel exchange with host Rachel Maddow. [HuffPo]

It symbolizes how cavalier we were in 20th century America – a hole dug next to a drinking water source where businesses sent hazardous waste to be buried out of sight and out of mind. [C-J/AKN]

Donald Trump says he thinks he can win the general election, even if the Republican Party does not unify to support his candidacy. [ABC News]

Andy Beshear says he has no reason to recuse himself from the Longmeyer case so let us break it down for him. Here are the conflicts: LONGMEYER WAS HIS DEPUTY! He’s a longtime friend of Longmeyer’s. Longmeyer worked directly for his daddy. Longmeyer raised/laundered cash for him. Longmeyer is going to prison. Jesus H at the stupid. Someone file a bar complaint against the man posthaste! [Ronnie Ellis]

On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, the presidency of George W. Bush changed instantly. In a new collection of never-before-seen photographs from that day, the president can be seen responding to the worst terrorist attack in United States history — an event that would redefine his time in office and propel the nation into two wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. [PBS]

When it came down to it, John Bland was unhappy and growing desperate. He was 65 years old, had led a life of watching in awe as his grandmother and aunt tried on dresses, mourned the realization that he would never bear a child and spent each day hating the body he had been given. [The News-Enterprise]

President Obama can’t wait to take on Donald Trump. Obama has been largely sidelined in the presidential contest, a last-year officeholder with high approval ratings who has repeatedly shown he likes to spar with political foes. [The Hill]

We think what Greg Stumbo really means is he wants a forensic accounting because an audit is way too random and easy to manipulate. Kentucky House Speaker Greg Stumbo is asking Auditor Mike Harmon if the General Assembly can authorize an audit of another branch of government. [WKMS]

FBI requests for customer records under a secretive surveillance order increased by nearly 50 percent in 2015, according to a U.S. government transparency report published this week. [Reuters]

Supt. Marvin Moore said the relocation of the Rowan County Board of Education’s central office from East Second Street to the old middle school on West Sun Street went better than anticipated. [The Morehead News]

Including a Kentuckian from Henderson. President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of 58 more federal prisoners Thursday, seeking to add momentum to his drive to allow earlier releases of men and women serving lengthy terms for drug offenses. [Politico & Press Release]

Lexington’s push to increase internet speeds will be delayed a few months as the city studies the cost of providing ultra high-speed internet access to Fayette County’s rural areas. [H-L]

Bernie Sanders has said that Hillary Clinton is not a “true progressive” and many of his supporters seem to agree. It’s one reason that Sanders keeps performing well in primaries and caucuses, prolonging the campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. [HuffPo]

Need cheap mobile phone service? Maybe even for a backup cell phone? I’m talking $6/mo cheap? Use our Ting referral code and we’ll all get a sweet credit. You get $25 — enough for a couple months of service to determine whether you like it. Both CDMA and GSM options. For worriers: no, you don’t get identified to us if you use our link… so please consider letting us know if you do! [Ting]

Ting not your thing? Want to be on the AT&T network with unlimited talk and text and cheap data? Join Cricket and you’ll get a $25 referral credit, $50 port-in credit and another $50 if you’re leaving T-Mobile. [Cricket]

Surprise! Adam Edelen Suddenly Cares

NOW Adam Edelen cares about the direction of the Commonwealth? Kentucky is headed the wrong way, down a dangerous road. [H-L]

President Barack Obama on Tuesday vowed to pick an indisputably qualified nominee for the Supreme Court and chided Republicans who control the U.S. Senate for threatening to block him from filling the pivotal vacancy. [HuffPo]

A top Bevin administration regulator over banking, insurance, horse racing and other business resigned Wednesday as a director of Kentucky’s major Republican super PAC after The Courier-Journal inquired about potential conflicts of holding both roles. K. Gail Russell, who was appointed Dec. 30 as deputy secretary of the Public Protection Cabinet, resigned Wednesday morning as a director of the super PAC Kentuckians for Strong Leadership, according to both the Governor’s Office and the super PAC. [C-J/AKN]

Polylactic acid (PLA) plastic is an increasingly common, environmentally friendly, alternative to conventional petrochemical-based mass plastics. But it’s a costly process. [Reuters]

House Republican Floor Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, went out of his way to praise a Democratic colleague with whom he frequently disagrees — and in doing so subtly suggested most Democrats are afraid to take tough votes or stand up for their convictions. [Ronnie Ellis]

Wealth, jobs and pay inequality are big political issues this presidential primary season, and they’re bound to become bigger once the parties pick their nominees. In the plethora of plans candidates tout for tackling these problems, one favored tool stands out: the federal tax code. [ProPublica]

In the wake of the firing of a Glasgow Police Department sergeant and public information officer, questions have remained about whether any other members of the department were investigated or disciplined. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Former President George W Bush has hit the campaign trail to boost younger brother Jeb’s faltering presidential nomination bid. [BBC]

Employees of Morehead State University were directed last Friday to take immediate steps to reduce expenditures to “an absolute minimum” for the balance of the current fiscal year. [The Morehead News]

Dr. Seth Ammerman listens intently to his new, 21-year-old patient. Ernesto, who does not want his last name disclosed, is homeless. He is earning a high school degree and working part time, but at night, he and his brother share a tent that they set up on the streets of San Jose, Calif. The daily stress of being homeless is wearing Ernesto out, and making him light up too many cigarettes. [NPR]

Providers of community mental health have no choice but to sit and wait in fear of how state budget cuts will affect them, said Pathways Inc. CEO Kimberly McClanahan. [Ashland Independent]

America is getting angrier, according to one watchdog. For the first time in five years, the number of hate groups in the United States rose in 2015, according to a new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center, a legal and advocacy organization known among other things for monitoring extremist activity. [WaPo]

The state’s Kynect health insurance exchange is a financially unsustainable boondoggle that has cost $330 million, Gov. Matt Bevin’s top health officials told lawmakers at the Capitol Tuesday. An hour earlier, at a news conference down the hall, several Kentucky farmers described Kynect as a lifeline that provided their families with affordable health insurance. [John Cheves]

Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump on Tuesday praised two audience members who tackled a protester at his rally in South Carolina. [HuffPo]

Mary Lou Marzian Is Still Fighting Mad

What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Angered by several anti-abortion bills this winter with language restricting a woman’s relationship with her doctor, Democratic state Rep. Mary Lou Marzian fired back Thursday with a bill to limit men’s access to Viagra and other erectile-dysfunction drugs. [H-L]

The Affordable Care Act is nearly six years old, and over that time it’s made real headway accomplishing some of its key goals. [HuffPo]

We watched in awe on Thursday as former Gov. Steve Beshear went to Louisville and Lexington to announce that he was heading up an organization that would push for Gov. Matt Bevin to change his stance on expanded Medicaid and the kynect health care exchange that has brought Kentucky kudos from around the nation. [C-J/AKN]

The 2016 campaign has bewildered and captivated George W. Bush. At home in Dallas, the 43rd president rises before dawn and reads political news online. He fires off emails to his old advisers to check on the latest campaign-trail gossip. He tunes into the debates, even though they stretch past his bedtime. [WaPo]

Landowners who had opposed efforts to put a natural gas pipeline across 13 counties have been victorious in the Kentucky Supreme Court. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders focused on helping minority communities during a series of campaign events in St. Paul, Minn., on Friday. [The Hill]

Father James Sichko of Richmond’s Saint Mark Catholic Church was in Rome this week where Pope Francis commissioned him and other selected priests as Missionaries of Mercy on Ash Wednesday. [Richmond Register]

What could go wrong??? A Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives panel approved legislation to privatize the U.S. air traffic control system on Thursday as part of a six-year bill to authorize funding for the Federal Aviation Administration. [Reuters]

A new transformer is more than meets the eye at the Big Sandy Power Plant. [Ashland Independent]

Most students in the U.S. are learning about climate change in schools, according to a new survey. But the quality of that climate science education is, for many students, questionable. [ThinkProgress]

Hart County magistrates awarded several bids during their regular monthly meeting Thursday morning. Among the bids they awarded was for the sale of various pieces of road equipment. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Minnesota, long accustomed to being a presidential primary season also-ran, is suddenly emerging as one of the most contentious and competitive fronts on Super Tuesday. [Politico]

After years of being knee-deep in the Horse Park shenanigans, Damon Thayer now wants an audit? Fascinating how that works. When the consulting money dried up, he started getting butthurt. [H-L]

For decades, politicians have been celebrated — sometimes even rewarded — for spouting “tough on crime” rhetoric and supporting laws that have inflated the nation’s inmate population and made the U.S. the world’s leading jailer. But voters from both parties have grown weary of such policies and overwhelmingly support broad reforms aimed at reducing the prison population, according to a public opinion poll released [last] week. [HuffPo]