Cameron Missed His Shot at Keeping Kelly Craft Out of KY Governor’s Race

Kentucky Attorney General and Republican candidate for governor Daniel Cameron missed his one shot at keeping former Trump-appointed UN Ambassador Kelly Craft out of the GOP primary.

Cameron’s campaign for governor turned in a paltry $300,521 quarterly finance report this week as he touted a questionable poll showing him leading the race and an endorsement 11 months before the May 2023 primary from Donald Trump. Cameron, who has benefitted from Mitch McConnell’s help in his run for Attorney General, was outraised nearly two to one by Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles.

The current Attorney General would have needed a nearly million-dollar fundraising quarter to keep Craft out of the primary, remarked one Kentucky political operative to KFP.

Craft, who has hinted at a run for office for more than a year, is expected to enter the race for governor in September. She has the ability to shift the GOP primary with her wealth and run an air war against her opponents. Craft is married to coal magnate Joe Craft, who has an estimated net worth of more than a billion dollars.

As Craft prepares to launch her bid for governor, Quarles assumes the frontrunner status with more than 100 endorsements from local elected officials. Quarles’s narrative shifts to focus on the race as he is backed by small donations from Kentuckians, as Cameron, and presumably, Craft will be backed by groups outside of Kentucky.

Trump has flip-flopped in his endorsements in other races, and would likely seek to back the winner of Kentucky’s Republican primary race.

Gov. Andy Beshear raised $1.1 million for his re-election this quarter bringing him to $3.2 million cash on hand.