TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Editorials

August 26, 2013

A wild week in Frankfort

CORBIN — Some weeks there simply is too much news to cover, at least when you’re a one-person bureau in a state capitol embroiled in legislative redistricting, political intrigue and sexcapades.

I wouldn’t be in my business if I didn’t love it and at its best, it never really feels like work. How many people get paid to talk to all the interesting, the powerful and sometimes strange people I get to talk to? As one of my journalism professors at Western Kentucky University told me years ago, “In this job, Tuesdays are never the same as Mondays.”

He was absolutely right, but in a week like this one, I would be happy enough to see Saturday instead of any of the days that precede it.

We began the week looking forward to a relatively smooth five-day special session of the General Assembly, which appeared ready to pass constitutional and reasonably fair redistricting plans. The only real intrigue appeared to be what a handful of House members placed into the same districts would do in the 2014 elections.

(Not to worry. Most of those decisions had been pretty much worked out in advance, regardless of what the affected lawmakers said to reporters.)

Then, late Monday, I listened to an unusual telephonic court hearing during which one federal judge made it pretty obvious this wasn’t going to be all that smooth. One of the issues was how to conduct special elections after the judges threw out the existing lines and prohibited their use in any future elections.

Suddenly it looked like we might be covering re-districting in federal court long after passage of the bill on Friday.

Then things got really interesting.

WFPL Radio in Louisville on Wednesday broke a blockbuster story about allegations of sexual misconduct by 68-year-old Rep. John Arnold, D-Sturgis. The details were sordid and pathetic, but there were more to come on Thursday as WFPL revealed still another complaint against the Union County lawmaker, who won his last race by a scant five votes.

Suddenly the question of unexpected special elections to fill vacancies was no longer just an academic one. Those judges may have to resolve that question pretty quickly.

Then the Frankfort State Journal revealed the sexual abuse complaints included allegations that a couple of other lawmakers had romantic relationships with legislative staff. They denied it of course, but some of their colleagues didn’t seem very surprised by the news.

Thursday morning at the annual Kentucky Farm Bureau breakfast various pols answered questions — well, actually they danced around them — about whether they’d run for governor in 2015. Sen. Rand Paul blew me and another reporter off when we asked about the federal deficit having fallen by half, though you wouldn’t know it by listening to Paul.

“Does anyone else have any questions?” was his response.

Feverishly trying to get multiple stories written before deadline Thursday night, the phone started ringing. In my business, you never know who is on the other end and what they may have to say, so you answer. Guess what? There are going to be law enforcement layoffs Friday and a legislator is about to announce he’ll seek statewide office.

But I’m two stories down, it’s nearly 8 p.m., I’ve got a column due Friday morning and on top of all that, the legislature is expected to pass that redistricting bill Friday. Sleep? That’s a luxury I can’t afford right now.

Jim Highland was right. Tuesday (and Wednesday and Thursday) wasn’t at all like Monday. Yes, I’m whining and it’s all very stressful and tiring.

But, hey, it ain’t boring.

Ronnie Ellis writes for CNHI News Service and is based in Frankfort, Ky. He may be contacted by email at rellis@cnhi.com. Follow CNHI News Service stories on Twitter at www.twitter.com/cnhifrankfort

1
Text Only
Editorials
  • LIKE IT OR NOT: MLB's All Star effort was a bust

    With the 85th edition of Major League Baseball’s All-Star game in the books, I have to say I feel like the whole thing was a complete bust.

    July 18, 2014

  • THE WAY IT IS: Some local teams can make a run

    Well folks, our Little League All-Star action is beginning to wind down, and I’ve been fortunate enough to see two of the Tri-County’s resp

    July 17, 2014

  • LIKE IT OR NOT: It's been a very busy summer

    While a lot of people would expect the local sports scene to slow down in the Tri-County in the summer time, that’s not usually the case for us here at the Times-Tribune.

    July 16, 2014

  • John Ross.jpg May we all cherish those few WWII vets who still live

    I watch this old BBC program pretty often called “Are You Being Served?” It’s mostly out of syndication — what shows remain can be seen most often through PBS.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0502 Bobbie Poynter So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, adieu

    I never have been very good at saying goodbye — family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, community — for years you’ve had my back and in turn, I believe I’ve had yours.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ronnie Ellis.jpg ‘Uh hummm!’ It’s been an interesting week

    One column can’t cover everything from a busy week of political events, but here are some quick takeaways from last week.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brad Hall.jpg Let’s multiply our numbers like fleas do

    Last Saturday, my wife, Carmen, and I spent the day at the Kings Island theme park near Cincinnati, Ohio.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • John Burkhart.jpg Not an earthly trace

    Just married (1897) and in his late 20’s, my grandfather was determined to make a living on a hillside farm covered in wilderness; much as his father had done before him in 1846  when he arrived from Germany.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Brad Hall.jpg Col. Mustard with the candlestick in Heaven

    One of my favorite movies is the murder mystery comedy “Clue,” which is based on the popular board game of the same name.

    June 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • John Burkhart.jpg Now or Never

    A story is told of an old widower who decided it was time to find a new wife. He chose to look for this new bride through the obituaries column; identifying new widows.

    June 30, 2014 1 Photo

Front page
Featured Ads
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Israel Bombs Multiple Targets in Gaza Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment Raw: Cargo Craft Undocks From Space Station Widow: Jury Sent Big Tobacco a $23B Message New Orleans Plans to Recycle Cigarette Butts UN Security Council Calls for MH 17 Crash Probe Obama Bestows Medal of Honor on NH Veteran Texas Sending National Guard Troops to Border Hopkins to Pay $190M After Pelvic Exams Taped Foxx Cites Washington 'Circus Mirror' NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Obama Voices Concern About Casualties in Mideast Diplomacy Intensifies Amid Mounting Gaza Toll AP Exclusive: American Beaten in Israel Speaks Obama Protects Gay, Transgender Workers Raw: Gaza Rescuers Search Rubble for Survivors Raw: International Team Inspects MH17 Bodies Raw: 25 Family Members Killed in Gaza Airstrike US Teen Beaten in Mideast Talks About Ordeal 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide