More Than $89 Million Spent on Kentucky Governor’s Race: Watchdog Group

State political parties and national contributors pumped a record amount into the 2023 campaign for the Bluegrass State’s governor’s mansion.

A record amount was spent on the race for the Governor’s Mansion in Frankfort, Kentucky, according to a leading watchdog organization.

On Nov. 7, Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, won another term in office, receiving 52.5 percent of the vote, according to the official election results from the Kentucky Secretary of State’s office. He defeated Republican rival and Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.

With the victory, Mr. Beshear secured a prominent Democratic position of power in a state that has voted for the Republican candidate in every presidential election since 2000.

According to campaign finance watchdog Open Secrets, more than $44.6 million in donations were made to candidates in Kentucky’s gubernatorial race. An additional $45.3 million was spent by “independent political groups” running negative advertisements targeting either the governor or Mr. Cameron.

Open Secrets said it was a record amount for a statewide race in the Bluegrass State.

According to Open Secrets’ Follow The Money website, Mr. Beshear raised more than $23.1 million in his winning bid. Mr. Cameron raised $6.5 million. That amount was less than the $12.4 million Kelly Craft, a former U.N. Ambassador under President Trump, raised in a losing bid for the Republican Party ticket.

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The Kentucky Democratic Party was the largest single donor for Mr. Beshear. It gave $7.5 million. The Kentucky Republican Party, with $1.8 million, was the single largest donor for Mr. Cameron.

Groups identified by Open Secrets as out-of-state “independent spenders” spent the most on the campaign.

Bluegrass Freedom Action, a group supporting Mr. Cameron, spent more than $4.8 million. Its organizational statements with the KREF list Washington-based Perspective Strategies CEO Stephen Aaron as its chairman.

Commonwealth PAC, a group organized to support Ms. Craft, spent $1.8 million on the race. That political action committee was principally funded by a trust linked to Joe Craft, CEO of Alliance Resource Partners LP, and Ms. Craft’s husband.

American Principles Project PAC, an Arlington, Virginia, based conservative group, spent $1.67 million on the race. American Principles Project identifies itself as “the only national pro-family organization engaging directly in campaigns and elections.”

Original News Source Link – Epoch Times

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