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President Barack Obama and Senator-elect Rand Paul talked on the phone this week. Paul isn’t likely to be any more cooperative with the President than outgoing Senator Jim Bunning, but Paul says he has promised to engage in polite, civil discourse.

The AP story says Obama initiated the call, but it appears that the White House isn’t saying much about it. Such calls are regular occurrences, so it makes sense that the conversation makes more news in Kentucky than in Washington. Still, it would be interesting to know what both sides thought about the call.

Programming note:

The Edit is on vacation Thursday and Friday. Regular posts will resume Monday, unless breaking news occurs.

There are essentially two types of pollsters. One type conducts polls for campaign use. The other conducts them for public consumption (Survey USA’s Bluegrass Polls, for example).  A group of 19 campaign pollsters are calling out public pollsters for not being open enough about how they conduct their polls.

From Politico:

The letter called on public pollsters to adhere to more professional standards by fully disclosing their methodology, including sampling, sample design and question wording, and on the media to hold public pollsters to a standard of transparency.

The public pollsters’ response? Get off your high horse.

Tom Jensen, director of the Democratic automated polling firm Public Policy Polling — which had a breakout year in enhancing its public profile — said it was presumptuous to call for openness when the campaign pollsters’ own work rarely sees the light of day. When internal campaign polls are released, he noted, it’s almost always because a campaign is trying to convince the media and the public that it’s doing better than the public polls show.

Jensen uses a local case to back up his argument:

Jensen pointed to a pair of internal campaign polls released in advance of Kentucky’s May Republican Senate primary that seemed to show Trey Grayson within striking distance of Rand Paul, at a time when public polls showed Paul with healthy leads. (Paul won the primary by 23 points.)

“That was a case where the public polling was very accurate and the campaigns were putting out very misleading information,” Jensen said. “They weren’t releasing the full surveys, just a number. I don’t know how you could have possibly found Rand Paul and Trey Grayson tied in a poll in early May unless [the horse-race question] came after extensive negative message testing on Paul.”


Mayor-elect Greg Fischer unveiled his transition team Wednesday. Here is the WFPL coverage, and here is a list of the team members:

Ron Weston

Merv Aubespin
Vice Chair

Doug Cobb
Vice Chair

Mary Gwen Wheeler
Vice Chair

Gabriela Alcalde 

Bill Altman

Muhammad Barbar

Bill Bardenwarper

Erica BeasleyNicole Candler

Middletown Mayor
Byron Chapman

Tommy Clark

Ann Coffey

Shively Mayor
Sherry Conner

Jose Neil Donis

Jonathan Dooley

SteVon Edwards

Bill Finn

Jon Goldberg

Eric Gunderson

GJ Hart

Margaret Handmaker

Gill Holland

Nikki Jackson

Vince Jarboe

Lee Lewis

Tomiko McDaniel

JK McKnight

Rishabh MehrotraLynnie Meyer

Larry Michalczyk

Charlie Moyer

Yung Nguyen

Kent Oyler 

Djenita Pasic

Ben Richmond

Vidya Ravichandran

Greg Roberts

Ann Smith

Rev. Frank Smith

Mary Ellen Wiederwohl

Ron Weston is an outgoing State Representative and former President of the Metro Council.

Merv Aubespin is a retired Courier-Journal associate editor.

Doug Cobb is a three-time Kentucky Entrepreneur of the Year.

Mary Gwen Wheeler is a senior advisor to Mayor Jerry Abramson on education.

Gabriela Alcalde is the former director of the Louisville Metro Office for Women.

Bill Altman is the chair of the Louisville Metro Board of Health and a VP at Kindred Healthcare.

Dr. Muhammad Babar is an attending physician at Jewish Hospital and St. Mary’s Healthcare

Bill Bardenwerper is on the board of directors for the Home Builders Assocation and helped write the Cornerstone 2020 plan.

Erica Kellem-Beasley is a board member for the Louisville Urban League Young Professionals

Nicole Candler owns Nic Creative Public Relations

Byron Chapman is the Mayor of Middletown.

Tommy Clark is the city’s disabilities director. He spoke to WFPL recently.

Ann Coffey is the president of Women 4 Women.

Sherry Conner is the Mayor of Shively.

Jose Neil Donis publishes Al Dia en America.

Jonathan Dooley is the president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1447.

SteVon Edwards works for the Metro Health Department as an obesity prevention specialist.

Bill Finn is business manager for IBEW Local 369.

Jon Goldberg is on the Greater Louisville Fund for the Arts board.

Eric Gunderson was on the Louisville Arena Authority.

Margaret Handmaker was on the U of L Foundation Board.

GJ Hart is the President of Texas Roadhouse.

Gill Holland is a film producer, developer and Louisville Public Media board member.

Nikki Jackson is the Secretary of the Kentucky Personnel Cabinet.

Vince Jarboe co-founded the Southwest Dream Team.

Lee Lewis is on the national political committee of the Sierra Club.

Tomiko McDaniel is a UAW Local 862 member.

J.K. McKnight founded the Forecastle Festival.

Rishabh Mehrotra is chair of the Health Enterprises Network board.

Lynnie Meyer is the chief development officer at Norton Healthcare and former president of the Center for Women and Families.

Larry Michalczyk is an adjunct faculty member in U of L’s Kent School of Social Work.

R. Charles Moyer is the dean of the U of L College of Business and is on the Louisville and Southern Indiana Bridges Authority.

Yung Nguyen is president of IVS LLC and he founded Lac Viet Academy.

Kent Oyler is a so-called serial entrepreneur.

Djenta Pasic owns Brainswork USA.

Vidya Ravichandran is president of GlowTouch Technologies.

Ben Richmond is president of the Urban League and is also on the Bridges Authority.

Greg Roberts is the president fo the Muhammad Ali Center

Anne Smith is the director of Ministries United South Central Louisville

Reverend Frank Smith is president of the Interdenominational Ministerial Coalition. He has spoken to WFPL several times recently. On one occasion, he called out Fischer’s former rival Hal Heiner for his ad calling for an end to the JCPS student assignment plan.

Mary Ellen Wiederwohl is the former president of the Junior League of Louisville.

With news Friday that outgoing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi will seek to remain leader of her party, Congressman John Yarmuth released this statement:

“Over the course of my four years in Congress, the vote that I am most proud of is electing Nancy Pelosi as the first female Speaker of the House. Speaker Pelosi has proven time and time again that she is able to build consensus in a caucus comprised of members from all across the ideological spectrum. Her dedication to advancing policies that improve the lives of all Americans is clearly evident in the significant legislative accomplishments that have been achieved with her as Speaker. These decisions, like all I make, are about what is in the best interests of my constituents and the country, about principle and not personalities – and that is why I will support Nancy Pelosi as House Democratic Leader in the 112th Congress.”

On Thursday, before Pelosi announced her intent, Yarmuth said he would likely support Maryland Representative Steny Hoyer for the minority leader’s post.

Here is audio of Third District Congressman John Yarmuth talking with reporters about the goals of the lame duck Congress and his thoughts on his third term. Highlights include a discussion of whether Yarmuth’s decision to campaign on the Democratic Party’s legislative successes was the right strategy. He says it is, because he won. But WHAS’s Joe Arnold says some Democrats are upset about it.

Here’s an interesting map:

That comes from the Daily Yonder (link currently unavailable) courtesy of the Rural Blog, which says:

The 125 most rural districts analyzed by the Yonder had at least 33 percent of their population living in rural areas. The rural average of all 435 House districts is 21 percent. “There are 39 rural districts that switched from Democratic representation to Republican,” Bishop and Ardery write. “These account for 65 percent of the 60 seats Republicans captured from Democrats on Tuesday.” No Republican district on the most rural list switched to Democrat.

Here are the election stories from the WFPL and Kentucky Public Radio newsroom:

Public Policy Polling’s latest survey shows Rand Paul with 55% of the vote and Jack Conway with 40%.

Conway’s unfavorables are high in the poll. A majority of those who responded also say they do not approve of the job the President or Kentucky’s current two Senators are doing.

Election Day is Tuesday. To prepare yourselves, here is a list of candidates in various races. Below is a collection of political coverage, summaries and policies.

Mayor’s Race

Third District


Everything Else

LEO has a story on the city’s chamber of commerce, Greater Louisville Inc. and the political and economic successes, pressures and failures it’s had in the last few years.

Particularly striking was the ending. The story addresses a systemic comfort with the way things work; a stagnation that has resulted in missed potential for several and increased comfort for some. It seems like this developed as Metro Government formed, and the potential remains untapped. (There’s also a potential for some state law changes.) Both remaining active candidates for mayor have proposed new ways of attracting jobs, and in recent interviews with WFPL, they both characterized their proposals (to some degree) as the way to realize that potential.

From LEO:

“I think we’ve just gotten complacent through the years,” Downard says. “And that goes across the board.” He says that the mayor’s use of economic development director Bruce Traughber to solicit jobs instead of the mayor is confusing. “When you’re the CEO of a major company, you’d expect to see (the mayor) all the time.”

Looking to Louisville’s future, former GLI chairman Jonathan Blue says that the next mayor must make job attraction “a priority, every day for the next four years, period,” and that the grim economic numbers don’t lie.

“Whoever wins on Tuesday, that person needs to be proactive and needs to find companies,” says Blue, CEO of Blue Equity. “We do not get companies relocating here by waiting for the phone to ring. So whoever wins, and it doesn’t matter to me, and they need to make sure that’s agenda item number one on a daily basis.”


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