Field of 2011 Candidates Does Not Include Trey Grayson
We're late to the story, but Trey Grayson, the two-term Secretary of State and highest Republican office holder in the state has declared that he will not be a candidate for office in 2011.
In a statement, Grayson said, "After many hours of reflection, conversations and prayer with family, friends, advisors and others, I want to announce today that I will not be a candidate for attorney general -- or any other office -- in 2011. While I am not ruling out a campaign in future years, I am confident that this is the best decision for my family and me."
Trey Grayson has been a great Secretary of State for Kentucky, modernizing the office and streamlining everything from business filings to real-time posting of election returns online. At the same time, the budget and staff of the office have been reduced significantly. He has served the taxpayer well.
But now that one of the biggest Republican names in the state has taken himself out of the running, Republicans must find a challenger for Attorney General Jack Conway who was weakened by his poor campaign for US Senate.
In an interview with Ronnie Ellis, Grayson mentioned a few names as potential Republican candidates for the office.
He doesn't know who may be interested on the Republican side but he mentioned possible interest by Rep. Stan Lee of Lexington who ran against Conway in 2007, Andy Barr who served in Gov. Ernie Fletcher's General Counsel Office and lost a congressional race to Ben Chandler this year, Kenton County Commonwealth Attorney Rob Sanders or state Sen. Robert Stivers of Clay County.
These are all strong potential candidates. Rep. Stan Lee is consistently on the top of the Kentucky Club for Growth Scorecard and a "Defender of Economic Freedom". Andy Barr has proven himself as a candidate, raising over $1.5 million and effectively running a tie against career politician Ben Chandler. Rob Sanders is a strong conservative and a popular Commonwealth Attorney with a strong base in Northern Kentucky, and Robert Stivers is the long-time chair of the Senate Judiciary committee. Any of these candidates would have the ability to run an effective campaign against Conway.