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Former Democratic mayoral candidates Tyler Allen, Shannon White and Lisa Moxley appear in the latest one-minute television ad from Republican candidate Hal Heiner. The three Democrats have endorsed Heiner in the race.

The spot paints Heiner as a change candidate, playing on the fact that there hasn’t been a Republican mayor of Louisville since the late 1960s. There has, however, been a Republican Judge Executive since then. Rebecca Jackson was the last Judge Executive before merger, and the last to have real power in government.

Other former Democratic candidates David Tandy and Jim King, and independent Jackie Green have endorsed Democratic candidate for mayor Greg Fischer.

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Republican candidate for mayor Hal Heiner Thursday discussed his plans for improving Jefferson County Public Schools, and announced his latest endorsement.

Heiner recently called for an end to the current student assignment plan in a television ad. The spot drew criticism from Democratic candidate Greg Fischer, among others. Heiner says he still supports diversity, but the assignment plan has not improved schools. He said scrapping the plan is only part of his education platform, which calls for more magnet schools and incentives for teachers at underperforming schools.

“What we need is a comprehensive re-look at how we go about education in this community, determine what resources are necessary to get there, then get about the business of improving these schools. We really have no time to waste in that regard,” said Heiner.

Former Democratic mayoral candidate Lisa Moxley announced her support for Heiner at the press conference. The mayor has no direct authority over JCPS, but Moxley said the mayor should lead efforts to improve schools.

“I think it’s absolutely appropriate for the mayor to take a leadership role for issues that impact the city and this is an issue that impacts the city. It impacts the families and the communities and the people who live here,” she said.

Fischer has proposed using public-private partnerships and after-school programs to improve education.

Update:

Here is the raw audio of the announcement. (MP3)

And here is Fischer’s response:

“Like many people in Louisville, I am frustrated with the lack of significant improvement in our schools. The student assignment plan and our school system are not working the way we expect and demand they must.

“The school board must fix the student assignment plan, and they are taking steps to do so, and as mayor I will be an active partner to make sure we get it right.

“I will do everything in my power to raise both the standards and expectations we have of our schools. A great city deserves great schools, and right now we are letting some of our parents and children down. High quality schools are the key to our city’s economic future and, as mayor, I will be there to make certain we get this right.”

The two frontrunners in the primaries for Louisville mayor are holding on to their leads according to a new poll.

A Bluegrass Poll commissioned by the Courier-Journal and WHAS11 shows the number of undecided voters in the Republican and Democratic primaries shrinking by about half. Benefiting from the drop are Democrat Greg Fischer and Republican Hal Heiner. Fischer now holds 42 percent of the vote among Democrats, marking an 11 point increase from a similar poll released last month. Behind Fischer is Metro Councilman Jim King, who gained eight points and holds 21 percent of the vote. King has overtaken fellow Councilman David Tandy, who dropped to third with 13 percent of the vote. He previously polled at 16 percent.

In the Republican primary, Chris Thieneman remained in second place with 25 percent, but Councilman Hal Heiner strengthened his lead. He now polls at 63 percent, up from 42 percent last month.

In both races, 11 percent of likely voters were undecided.

The full results:

Democrats:

  • Greg Fischer – 42
  • Jim King – 21
  • David Tandy – 13
  • Tyler Allen – 7
  • Shannon White – 2
  • Connie Marshall -2
  • Burrell Farnsley – 2
  • Lisa Moxley – 1
  • Undecided – 11

Republicans:

  • Hal Heiner – 63
  • Chris Thieneman – 25
  • Jonathan Robertson – 1
  • Undecided – 11
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