Attorney General Andy Beshear formally announced his campaign for governor with a pledge to bring Kentuckians together to invest in public education, attract better paying jobs, more aggressively tackle the opioid epidemic and restore government accountability.
Beshear, 40, and his running mate, educator Jacqueline Coleman, 36, of Harrodsburg, announced their campaign to restore dignity and transparency to Frankfort on a two-day, seven-city swing around Kentucky.
“I have poured my heart and soul into being attorney general because I love Kentucky,” Beshear said. “I was born and raised in this state, graduated from its public schools and my wife Britainy and I chose it as the place we would perform our most important job – raising our children. As governor, I will work every day to bring Kentuckians together to tackle our most pressing problems.”
Beshear said leaders in Frankfort are placing their own interests ahead of the interests of regular Kentuckians. “We need a new generation of leadership willing to listen and work with people, not bully them and say it’s my way or the highway.”
As governor, Beshear said he would work to fund every public school and public university in a way that creates true opportunity for our children. Teachers would be treated with respect, their retirements would be honored and they will have a seat at the table because they educate and care for our state’s most precious resource – our children.
Beshear will continue his fight in the drug epidemic, bringing his success in launching the opioid disposal program, funding treatment and suing opioid makers to the Governor’s Office, where he could make even more progress.
Beshear stated another key focus would be creating good paying jobs. At a time when Kentucky has some of the lowest paying jobs and lowest wage growth in the country, Beshear promised to bring to Kentucky the types of jobs that pay enough for our families to live on.
In order “to get back to doing the right thing simply because it is the right thing to do,” Beshear pledges to restore honesty and transparency in government by instituting one of the nation’s toughest ethics codes and pushing for legislative term limits.
“These are big goals, but we can achieve them if we work together and trust one another,” Beshear said. “I’m blessed that in making this announcement and commitment, I’m supported by the best family anyone could ask for as well as the best running mate.”
A fifth-generation Mercer Countian, Coleman has worked over a decade in public education, serving as a teacher, high school basketball coach and administrator.
Coleman began her teaching career at Burgin High School before moving on to East Jessamine High School. She’s currently an assistant principal at Nelson County High School. Coleman played college basketball and has been a staunch advocate for public education and empowering young women.
“Frankfort is broken, and as Kentuckians, we can no longer allow our government to blindside us time and time again at the cost of our children’s future,” Coleman said. “We need a change and that’s why I’m running with Andy. His fight to protect our families has made him an outsider in Frankfort, and his passion and conviction for Kentucky is the one thing that will truly restore open and honest government that will once again work for each and every one of us.”
As attorney general, Beshear has fought for families who have lost loved ones to Kentucky’s opioid epidemic. He has sued six opioid manufacturers and distributors, provided $8 million in funding to 15 drug treatment centers statewide and launched an opioid disposal prevention program aimed at eliminating 2.2 million opioids sitting in household medicine cabinets across the state.
Beshear has given a voice to survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse by establishing the nation’s first survivors council, and by pledging to test every rape kit across Kentucky through $4.5 million in state funding to the KSP Crime Lab and by securing nearly $3 million in federal funding to create a sexual assault cold case unit in his office.
During Beshear’s time as attorney general, the office arrested, charged and convicted a record number of online predators; trained thousands of Kentuckians to recognize and report child abuse; and helped raise awareness and fought against modern day slavery – human trafficking.
Beshear has protected seniors who face a multitude of scammers by partnering with nonprofits, churches and veterans’ organizations to offer real solutions, and his office has returned $1.6 million to Kentuckians who have fallen victim to scams.
Beshear said he and Coleman are excited about the opportunity to listen to Kentuckians in every corner of the state and to share their ideas on how to move Kentucky forward.
The two announced their 2019 run July 9 and July 10 in Ashland, Bowling Green, Lexington, Louisville, Owensboro, Paducah and Pikeville.
More information about Beshear and Coleman may be viewed at https://andybeshear.com