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Governor Beshear sues state officers

Governor Andy Beshear is suing all of Kentucky’s constitutional officers.
Published: May. 5, 2022 at 5:31 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WKYT) - Governor Andy Beshear is suing all of Kentucky’s constitutional officers.

The governor filed suit Thursday afternoon against Attorney General Daniel Cameron, Secretary of State Michael Adams, State Treasurer Alison Ball, State Auditor Mike Harmon and Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles. All are Republicans.

The lawsuit is over House Bill 334. The measure would remove current members of the executive branch ethics commission. It shifts the majority of the appointments to the other state officers.

Governor Beshear vetoed the bill, but lawmakers overrode the veto.

Secretary of State Adams released this statement on the lawsuit:

This unexpected lawsuit pertains to House Bill 334, a good-government bill that prevents a governor from stacking the ethics commission with his cronies by allocating appointments among the constitutional officers.

I was disappointed in 2020 when the Governor vetoed emergency legislation to allow us to work together to save the election. Thank God he was overridden; I shudder to think what would have happened had his reckless act stood.

I was disappointed this year when the Governor vetoed a bipartisan election reform bill that every Democratic senator and most Democratic representatives voted for. Now I’m disappointed by his lawsuit to stop Democratic and Republican ethics appointees from working together.

The Governor is at his best on the occasions when he comes out of his partisan bunker, recognizes we are a two-party state, and treats others with respect. Vetoes and lawsuits, no matter how numerous, are not governing.

Beshear said the bill is unconstitutional and has called it another power grab by Republicans.

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