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Harmon seeking GOP nomination in race for Kentucky governor

Published: Jul. 12, 2021 at 6:20 AM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Kentucky Auditor Mike Harmon filed papers Monday to become the first official 2023 Republican candidate for governor.

In a letter announcing his decision to run, Harmon says Kentuckians have had their liberties and their livelihoods stolen. He says he’s not making a lot of promises, but he intends to rely on his faith while serving his state.

(Read Harmon’s announcement below)

Harmon, who is from Danville, is in his second term as auditor.

Previously, he represented parts of Boyle County and Casey County in the Kentucky House of Representatives for 13 years.

Harmon has led audits of the Kentucky Public Retirement System, the Kentucky Law Enforcement Foundation Program Fund, and the state’s unemployment system, among others.

Harmon is already throwing jabs at Democratic Governor Andy Beshear who plans to run for re-election. He criticized the governor’s COVID-19 restrictions that shut down businesses and organizations.

“His people sent out state police basically to take down license plates at churches, which I thought was atrocious,” Harmon said.

Other Republicans are expected to join Harmon.

Current Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has said he’s strongly considering running for governor in 2023. Former United States ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft is said to also be exploring the idea.

“Harmon will need to raise substantial money if he is to compete against possibly better-known candidates,” said WKYT’s Bill Bryant. “He knows that and that may be the reason he wants to enter is early.”

Harmon says he’ll soon hit the campaign trail and travel across the state to meet with people and hear their concerns.

Governor Andy Beshear has said he plans to seek re-election.

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