This General Assembly edition of Liberty Boosters and Busters begins with Kentuckians who, while neither bureaucrats nor politicians, care enough about the future of our commonwealth to take a principled stand against an unfair and destructive policy.

For my first stop on the food express, I strolled through the doors of Carr's Steakhouse. To give you a bit of background, this is a family owned and operated business which began across the street in the barn. You'll recognize the original location as it generally is swarmed with people fir…

Kentuckians are rightfully known for being hard workers. I'm glad more of them, from Paducah to Pikeville, are benefitting from our country's strong economy, which has been bolstered by Republican policies. The Republican-led Senate just gave Kentucky workers another boost in an overwhelming…

We have reached that time in every presidential nominating year when distinguished, national opinion leaders beat up on Iowa and that admirable state's influential role in determining the two major parties' eventual presidential nominees and, therefore, the next president.

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Monday night's Graves County Fiscal Court meeting drew a large crowd, which, in my opinion, got a look at government at work: good, bad or ugly, depending on one's perspective.

At a time when efforts are underway across the country to restrict gun ownership, patriotic Americans are rising up in strong defense of the Second Amendment. This is especially true across Kentucky where there is significant grassroots energy aimed at defending a right that our founding fat…

The members of the General Assembly have returned to Frankfort and the 2020 Regular Session is in full swing. We started off the week by taking care of necessary administrative duties such as filing bills and making some changes to committee assignments. I am pleased to share that my committ…

The first week of the 2020 Regular Session of the Kentucky General Assembly has come to a close. We had a productive week in Frankfort and left with confidence in what the session has in store. It was a pleasure to begin the session on Tuesday with a visit from the 100th Army Band from Fort …

The word "resolution" didn't cross my mind as we segued from 2019 into 2020. I wasn't going down that road. I did, however, set up a few goals for the new year on both professional and personal notes.

Is anyone here old enough to remember the urgent warning issued in a speech to the National Convention of the Veterans of Foreign Wars in August 2002 by an American vice president who had artfully avoided the military draft during wartime?

As we move into the new year, I've been reflecting on what we have accomplished in 2019 on behalf of the First Congressional District. Every time I returned to Kentucky throughout 2019, I heard loud and clear the priorities of my constituents, which have been to enact policies that put worki…

Below is my 2020 legislative questionnaire, which I hope you will take a few moments to complete. While I have mailed a few copies to households in our district, I am extremely grateful that the newspaper has made this version available to even more of our friends and neighbors.

As we round out an exciting year of celebrating Kentucky Farm Bureau's centennial, I find myself reflecting on the past -- the past year of celebrations and the past century of Kentucky Farm Bureau. After all of the 100-year celebrations, ceremonies, presentations, and excitement, it is clea…

In April of next year, the U.S. Census Bureau will begin the decennial census of every household in the United States. While the census will be used for several governmental determinations such as apportionment of Congressional seats, the data is also incredi-bly important to Head Start prog…

Even as the U.S. House of Representatives concluded 2019 by passing President Trump's landmark new trade agreement with Canada and Mexico - the USMCA - that major accomplishment was unfortunately overshadowed by the partisan, divisive impeachment proceedings taken up by Washington Democrats.

First, an anecdote circulating about the most courageously candid staff person in the White House allegedly speaking to President Donald J Trump: "Mr. President, you're coming across as mean-spirited, abusive and so unlikable that people frankly do not want to work for you. Sir, in all due r…

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When I first started re-attending college in the fall of 2013 after a nearly 10-year hiatus, it was surreal. I was 26 pushing 27 and had no idea what I wanted to be. All I knew is that writing was my skill and Murray State was the goal.

Every time we think we're done with the Master of Mayhem, former Gov. Matt Bevin, something newer and stranger emerges.

Berea's Mary Turley-Renfro is a gift to her community, its taxpayers and citizens statewide who can stop tax-increase attempts coming soon by a government near you.

Congress and the media obsess endlessly over whether President Donald Trump should be impeached. Both ignore $23 trillion of bigger problems.

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No one likes more legislative regulations. But when it comes to your health, my health, our health and the health of our children and their children, shouldn’t we be willing to bite the bullet, so to speak, and see what steps we can take for a healthier you, a healthier me and a healthier future?

Donald Trump Jr., in his better-selling book, "Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us," writes of his reactions to visiting Arlington National Cemetery and driving "past the rows of white grave markers." He explains: "In that moment, I ... thought of all the attacks …

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Legislators spent last week in Frankfort wrapping up many of our Interim Joint Committees.

Our homes will soon be filled with the aroma of roast turkey wafting through the kitchen and dinner tables decked with mounds of mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce and other holiday favorites that please our Thanksgiving palates. It's my favorite holiday, untainted by the commercialism that ha…

In listening to the Democratic presidential debates, we might conclude that "Medicare for All" is a legislative possibility. It is not, and any presidential candidate with a scintilla of self-respect must admit that fact.

In the nearly two years that I have had the honor of serving as Kentucky's Commissioner of Education, I have made students' preparation for success in the workforce a top priority. So much so that if there were any one area that I have given disproportionate attention, it has been workforce …

While University of Louisville officials see their purchase of the faltering Jewish Hospital and other properties as a bold move designed to buoy a too-big-to-fail health care provider which has been part of the community for a century, legislators - at least those from outside the River Cit…

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There is no doubt that putting in place quality infrastructure, including roads, bridges and water systems, is incredibly vital to our quality of life. We depend on safe roads, quality drinking water, and reliable forms of energy. It makes perfect sense that these should be among the most im…

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has impressive credentials: He graduated third in his class from Los Amigos High School in California's Orange County before winning an appointment from his congressman -- "B-1 Bob" Dornan, a conservative remembered for his unstinting support for the California…

I am proud that many of our nation's veterans call the First District of Kentucky home. Serving as these brave patriots' Representative in Congress is one of the greatest privileges of this office. Ensuring that we are adequately responding to the needs of our veterans is of the utmost impor…

Jonas Williams has been selling presidential merchandise since the 1990s, when Bill Clinton was president, and here's what he knows about Donald Trump: "Business has never been better."

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"What do you think of the Berlin Wall?" a student asked me when my Thursday night history class resumed after our 7:45 break.

In Congress, we are tasked with serving the interests of diverse demographics within our congressional districts. The fastest growing demographic within many of our constituencies is Americans over 65. Today the life expectancy rate in our nation is at a historic high - an amazing achievemen…

Four years ago, the media were talking about a "Libertarian Moment."

Part of my daughter's morning school arrival routine is stopping to say "Hi!" to Officer Steve, her school resource officer (SRO). And daily, even with all he is managing during morning drop-offs, he never fails to share a smile or a laugh with her.

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I believe ghosts exist. They may not be the white sheet variety, but I'm open to the idea that maybe not all of those dearly departed "cross over" to whatever awaits them after death.

WASHINGTON -- As the 2020 election comes into sharper focus, one issue that seems to animate both sides -- the Supreme Court -- is once again taking center stage.

Most people are aware of our armed forces veterans whom we celebrate on Veterans Day each November. However, there are "unsung heroes" that are often forgotten. We're talking about the almost one million civilians who worked at nuclear weapons facilities across the U.S. from 1942 until the p…

The second of five gubernatorial campaign debates held recently at the University of Kentucky featured a statement you rarely hear uttered by a politician of either party, but especially one who portrays himself as a progressive with a spending wish list long enough to cover every inch of th…

Twenty years ago, former U.S. Transportation Secretary, President of the Red Cross and future North Carolina Sen. Elizabeth Dole was a decidedly long-shot candidate for the Republican presidential nomination -- an honor her husband, former Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole had won four years e…

This past week, the Interim Joint Committee on Agriculture met to hear a report from Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles on the state of agriculture in Kentucky. Quarles provided an update on challenges Kentucky farmers are facing, as well as good news as it relates to fresh opportuniti…

"Jesus Christ, Super Socialist" is Ivonne Rovira's recent missive on Forward Kentucky in which she equates socialism with true Christianity.

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The legislature's interim joint committees met this week in preparation for the next legislative session, which will convene on January 7, 2020. We heard testimony on several bills that have been pre-filed for session, but also received updates from state agencies on state programs.

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A newspaper reporter gets to write the first draft of a community's history.

Ample evidence provided by the latest test scores assessing Kentucky's academic performance during the 2018-19 school year suggests too many of our students struggled academically and that the drama and disruption caused by teachers' illegal strikes and school shutdowns exacerbated the problems.

In last month's column about Kentucky's new 5-star accountability system, I noted that the release of test scores and school accountability data does not represent the end of our collective work to ensure all children are learning at high levels. Instead, the release of accountability data i…

This past week, we celebrated National Voter Registration Day. Thousands of organizations and people all across the country rallied together to register people to do the one thing that is essential for a representative democracy-vote. These activities always remind me just how sacred the rig…

Eddie Campbell, a choir teacher from Knox County elected this spring as the new president of the Kentucky Education Association - the state teachers' union - has composed an ugly ditty published recently by the Courier Journal with several dissonant notes regarding a proposed scholarship tax…

Families in nearly every neighborhood of our country have suffered because of the opioid and substance abuse epidemic. For years, the situation just seemed to get worse as addiction hurt more families. Kentucky has tragically been among the hardest-hit states. Thankfully, however, our years-…