Former Democratic mega-donor Dr. Mark Lynn is contemplating a run for mayor of Louisville as a Republican, the optometrist told Kentucky Fried Politics on Tuesday.
The 62-year old businessman said at this point in time he’s still just thinking about running and determining if he could do more good in or out of the office.
“We’ll see I won’t say yes or no at the moment, but it is under advisement… I’ll get with the family and see what we want to do,” Lynn said adding that he could take his time in making a decision to run.
The optometrist whose name graces the Louisville City Soccer Stadium changed his party registration on Nov. 18, 2020, after Joe Biden won the presidency and as President Donald Trump was claiming the election was stolen. Lynn would not disclose his reason for the party switch with Kentucky Fried Politics.
“Personal issues,” is how he defined the party change to Kentucky Fried Politics. “People’s opinions on why they do party’s type of thing has gone for way too much attention, and we need to go for who is the best candidate and who can do the best job at the right point in time and the best beliefs who can fit who you want. If we get back to that life will be good.”
From 2007 to 2019, Lynn and his wife donated $44,900 to Kentucky Democratic candidates, according to filings with the Kentucky Registry of Election Finance (KREF). He also made donations of nearly $90,000 to the Kentucky Democratic Party state central and executive committees, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission (FEC).
Lynn did not have an answer on his core beliefs and how they might differ from the Democratic candidates already in the race.
“I haven’t even put together a foundation yet to even know,” he said.
“I’ve had people asking me to run and to look at it, but I haven’t even gotten that far to tell you what my views are different from Craig [Greenberg] or anybody else,” Lynn said. “I bet we’re all pretty darn similar right now. I mean health, safety, economics, it’s not really going to be a big brain surge to get past the top big three or four for anybody no matter who you are. It’s just the way it is these days. It’s just a matter of giving the people a choice of who they think can do the best job.”
Lynn serves as the chairman of the Kentucky State Fair Board, the governing body of Kentucky Venues which oversees the Kentucky Exposition Center and the Kentucky International Convention Center. Governed by the Kentucky State Fair Board, Kentucky Venues also produces the Kentucky State Fair, World’s Championship Horse Show, National Farm Machinery Show, Championship Tractor Pull, North American International Livestock Exposition, and North American Championship Rodeo, according to their website.
A change to state law by the General Assembly moved the appointments for the fair board to the state Agriculture Commissioner, a post currently held by Ryan Quarles, a Republican.