(Murray KY, June 21, 2013) – A smaller than average crowd of First District Democratic activists gathered on this Friday evening on the first official day of summer for the Purchase Area Jefferson Jackson Dinner sponsored by the Calloway County Democratic Party Executive Committee.
The event held annually at the Curris Center on Murray State University’s campus is both a fundraiser for Calloway County’s Dems and a chance for state Democrats to press the flesh, take their political temperature and to deliver a red meat speech to a friendly audience. This year’s attendance was between 115 and 130 guests. That’s a significant drop from a high of 475 during an election year.
This year, elected constitutional officers Alison Lundergan Grimes, Jack Conway, Todd Hollenbach and Adam Edelen were the speakers. The speeches were short and the target was clearly Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader, who is up for re-election in 2014.
The event, which has in the past been covered by television, radio and print was bypassed this year by most media outlets. The Paducah Sun sent a reporter/photographer, but no story or pictures appeared in the Saturday or Sunday edition of the paper. Even the local NPR station on Murray State’s campus passed on covering the dinner.
With 2013 being the year without an election in Kentucky, free publicity for local and regional political events will be hard to come by. With the Purchase tending toward the GOP, Democratic leaders are finding that the media attention they took as their due in the past is gone – possibly forever.
Or at least until an election year.