Republicans Add to Super Majority in Legislative Elections

Republicans are adding to their already staggering numbers after Tuesday’s elections after knocking off several Democratic incumbents increasing their majority to 80 seats.

Several incumbent House Democrats lost their re-election races on Election Day, their first time defending their seats under new legislative maps crafted by Republicans.

Rep. Patti Minter, D-Bowling Green, lost her re-election bid in Warren County to Republican Kevin Jackson, a financial consultant for Studle Financial Services. Jackson bested Minter with 6,762 votes to Minter’s 5,636 votes. Jackson is a retired educator who serves on the Warren County Board of Education, and Minter is a historian at Western Kentucky University.

The GOP also defeated a targeted mountain Democrat Rep. Angie Hatton, D-Whitesburg. Dr. Jacob Justice defeated Hatton with 7,291 to Hatton’s 5,595 votes, according to unofficial result. The 94th district encompasses all of Letcher County as well as most of southern Harlan County, and southern and eastern Pike County.

In Louisville, Republican Jared Bauman defeated Democratic incumbent Rep. Charlie Miller, who has served since 1998. Bauman garnered 8,206 votes to Miller’s 6,334, according to the Jefferson County Clerk.

Four-term Democratic Rep. Jeff Donohue was also defeated on Tuesday after redistricting shifted the south end seat along the Bullitt County line. Donohue had been outraised by political newcomer Emily Callaway.

In northern Kentucky, at the time of writing this report, Rep. Buddy Wheatley, D-Covington, looked poised to lose his re-election to GOP challenger Stephanie Dietz, an Edgewood family lawyer. Redistricting stripped Wheatley of the Democratic urban Covington core.

“The Republican Party of Kentucky led an unprecedented effort this year to put Democrats on the defense with messages focused on inflation and crime,” said Republican Party of Kentucky spokesperson Sean Southard. “Kentucky voters overwhelmingly sided with Republicans in rejecting the Biden agenda. There is no difference between a Kentucky Democrat and a Biden Democrat. We will capitalize upon this momentum in 2023 when we make Andy Beshear, Biden’s biggest Kentucky cheerleader, a one term governor.”

In the state Senate, Republican Gex “Jay” Williams defeated Teresa Barton in a close election contest for the open 20th District Senate seat.

“This was a spirited campaign,” Williams said in a statement. “I know Teresa Barton and people on her side are disappointed in tonight’s result, but I wish them well and will also work hard for their best interest. At the end of the day, we are all Kentuckians and we all deserve a brighter future together.”