Democrat From Kentucky

Democrat from Kentucky
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Strife Within The Republican Party Thursday, September 15, 2005

It seems ol' Ernie might be having some real problems right now. He called for resignation of Darrell Brock, chair of the Republican part in Kentucky and it seems Brock may be telling him no. Consider the governor traditionally picks the party chief, this would be a problem however the governor is not the most powerful Republican in the state. This article is by Mark Chellgren at the AP. It does prove quite interesting. I pulled it from WKYT's website.

Brock Defying Fletcher By Staying On At Party
Associated Press

FRANKFORT, Ky. - Kentucky Republican Party Chairman Darrell Brock is apparently defying Gov. Ernie Fletcher by staying on at his party post.

When Fletcher fired nine officials Wednesday for breaking personnel rules and making his administration look bad, the governor also said Brock should be dismissed from his party post.

But in an oblique statement released by the party later Wednesday, Brock said he believed party officials were pleased with his performance. "I'm pleased to serve at their pleasure and with the support of a great many of our Republican leaders from this Commonwealth," concluded the two-sentence statement.

Brock has not returned repeated calls for comment since then and even other GOP officials seem reluctant to get into the fray, which will presumably come to a head Saturday when the state party's executive committee is scheduled to meet.

Spencer Noe, a Lexington lawyer who was often the party's spokesman during the special grand jury investigation that indicted Brock and the others, said Wednesday he did not know what the executive committee might do.

And members of Kentucky's congressional delegation weren't very forthcoming either on Thursday.

A spokeswoman for Fourth District Rep. Geoff Davis said, "The executive Committee should do what it feels is necessary to continue leading a strong, unified Republican Party in Kentucky. We will support their decision."

A spokeswoman for U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, arguably the most influential Republican in Kentucky, said he had no comment.

No one else in the GOP congressional delegation returned calls seeking comment on Thursday.

Brock was formerly director of Fletcher's office of local development and went to the party job with the governor's blessing in April.

"He has shown tremendous leadership while serving in my administration," Fletcher said at the time "I commend him for his dedication to public service and the betterment of the commonwealth."

Among those on the executive committee are Basil Turbyfill and Vince Fields, two officials fired by Fletcher on Wednesday. A Fletcher spokeswoman said Fletcher did not want Turbyfill and Fields removed from the GOP committee.

In a related matter, questions began Thursday about some of the officials still in the administration even though they were also implicated in personnel wrongdoing and were among those indicted, but pardoned by Fletcher.

Acting Transportation Cabinet Secretary Bill Nighbert, Deputy Secretary Jim Adams and Tim Hazlette, personnel chief in the cabinet, were all indicted for personnel violations and pardoned by Fletcher. They were not among the nine officials sacked on Wednesday. Fletcher left a press conference Thursday before questions could be raised about their status.

"There's a difference between the criminal standard and the management standard," Fletcher spokeswoman Carla Blanton said Thursday.

Fletcher's remarks Thursday did not acknowledge wrongdoing by anyone, even those who were indicted. Instead, he said their problems involved being too eager to please local officials, sending too many inappropriate e-mails, lack of respect or understand of the Merit System or a "lack of insight" about how their actions "might reflect upon the ethics of this administration."

Court documents indicate Nighbert was installed at Transportation to replace retired General Clay Bailey because Bailey was not doing enough to get political supporters into cabinet jobs. He and Adams were indicted for conspiring to fire the cabinet's deputy inspector general for supporting Democrat Ben Chandler against Fletcher in 2003.


Ernie Fletcher continues to dig his grave. Based on other stories from a speech he gave in Northern Ky, Fletcher's losing the wind in his sails very quickly. He gotten rid of his top supporters, many of whom probably shouldn't have been there to begin with. The problem with Fletcher is that his credibility is gone, he has no more moral fiber. He led a corrupt administration and honestly, I don't know if he's got it in his belly to continue on this fight because it's not over yet.

posted by Stithmeister @ 11:29 PM

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At 7:41 PM, Blogger Cynicus said...
There is one little thing about this that yet may happen. You see, it seems that the news about all these shenannigans has gone national. And the overall national reaction is as much "those ignorant, toothless Kentucky hillbillies" are "at it again" as it is "the Kentucky Republican administration is at it again".

You see, as long as the rest of the country can paint it as something that has to do with their mental image of Kentucky as the Great Example of Cracker Stupidity, then it's something that "can't happen here." And doesn't look like the national Republican Administration's appointment of loyal fools to important offices.

And the one little thing that may yet happen? When the other 49 states start giving the Commonwealth of Kentucky hell about KY poverty, illiteracy, ill-education, and on and on, Kentuckians start banding together in instinctive defense. Even to the point of supporting a crook as "OUR crook".

Ernie could still end up a state hero, if only enough outsiders badmouth Kentuckians over this.

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At 9:01 PM, Blogger kydemocrat said...
Howard Dean made comments about Fletcher - it IS national news. He is one of the worst leaders I have ever seen. And he's dragging the state down with him.

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Location: Harrodsburg, Kentucky, United States

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