Senate President David Williams came to West Kentucky this past weekend in a new role - as a candidate for governor. He's taking the plunge literally. Saturday morning, he jumped into a very cold Kentucky Lake on a dare from Rep. Will Coursey. He joked at the Lincoln Day Dinner in Murray on Saturday evening that Democratic leaders across the state were “hoping I wouldn’t come back up.”
In an interview before the dinner at the Curris Center on Murray’s State’s campus, Williams had what might be good news for some and bad news for others. The 2011 session of the General Assembly will be shortened because according to Williams, there just won’t be enough bills passed to require more than one veto and override day. He believes the House will agree to adjourn early. That’s good news for taxpayers disgruntled by the cost of the session. It’s bad news for those with bills in the hopper. The chances of passage of both houses just narrowed.
Speaking last of the three candidates running for the GOP nomination, Williams opened his remarks with short, pithy pronouncements- “The state is adrift. The governor has no plan” and the governor is against charter schools.
Responding to criticisms from his opponents, Phil Moffett and Bobbie Holsclaw, Williams said that the Senate had dealt with tax issues, reducing corporate rates from 8.75% to 6%. Answering his primary opponents' charge that he is not conservative enough and has not stood up for fiscal frugality, Williams took aim at critics on the left and right.
In a dig at the state’s two major newspapers, Williams told the crowd that he had 489 editorials in the Courier Journal and Lexington Herald Leader critical of him for standing up for conservative values. “When I am elected, there’ll be a new sheriff in town.”
Running Mate Richie Farmer - Happy to be running
Commissioner of Agriculture Richie Farmer said his reasons for running for lieutenant governor on a ticket with David Williams are simple- every thing good in his life has happened in Kentucky and he loves the state. He said that he is proud to be on a ticket with Williams whom he called a bold leader.
Farmer quoted Williams as saying that Governor Beshear should lead, follow or get out of the way. He told the receptive crowd that Beshear won’t lead, can’t follow and in November, we, the Williams/ Farmer ticket, will get him out of the way.