Tonight, in the halls of democracy, Kentucky Republicans took democracy and drowned it in a bathtub of sewage.

And note I didn’t say “Republican leadership” as I usually do. Every Republican in Frankfort deserves to have this travesty, this treachery, laid at their feet.

They moved the legislative day off of Wednesday, so as to avoid the teachers that had hired substitutes and worked over on Tuesday so as to be in Frankfort on the supposed last day of legislation, just in case the pension bill came up.

Then, without warning, they took a committee bill about sewage – about SEWAGE – and substituted at the last minute their pension bill
– without publishing it
– without giving the opposition time to read it
– and without the actuarial analysis REQUIRED by law.

Then they rammed it through the House, with Republican after Republican standing to read from prepared and printed speeches. The Republicans knew this was coming, knew they were going to practice knavery in the halls of the Capitol, and so they took the time to prepare their speeches ahead of time, so they would be ready to help kill democracy.

Notice that I am not talking about the actual pension bill. Why? Because who knows what is even in it! Even as they are voting tonight in the Senate, it is still not available to the public, and most especially to the people it affects. One firefighter tweeted at their representative, asking if the firefighter could see the bill that was affecting his future. The answer? No, I’m sorry, the only place to see the bill is in the halls of the Capitol. The halls where we are busy killing democracy.

Make no mistake: this is dirty politics at its worst. This is
    flim-flam politics,
        back-room politics,
            no-ethics politics,
                Koch-kissers politics.
This is how you run a mob organization, not a legislature.

And this, Republicans, is how you lose control of Frankfort in the fall. You think people across this state are going to forget this? You think people are going to thank you for ramming through a bad bill, with no analysis, at the end of the session? You think teachers and firefighters and state workers are going to smile when you screw them and say “Please, sir, may I have another?”

No, my Republican friends. I have often been accused of being too reasonable, of trying to see both sides. But there is no other side to see tonight. You came into office proclaiming yourselves to be “the adults in the room,” and instead you have abused your power, behaved like bullies, and mocked the very halls where you stand.

No, we shall not forget. When you talk of “values,” we will laugh. When you talk of “democracy” and “transparency,” we will laugh louder. And when you talk of “serving the people,” we will laugh loudest of all.

And we shall have the last laugh in the fall, when the democracy that you tried to drown tonight rises up in righteous indignation and throws you out of its halls.


@KYGOP – We shall not forget. Instead, we shall have the last laugh in the fall, when the democracy that you tried to drown tonight rises up in righteous indignation and throws you out of its halls.Click To Tweet
Bruce Maples
Bruce Maples has been involved in politics and activism since 2004, when he became active in the Kerry Kentucky movement. He has been President, Vice-President, and Treasurer of the Metro Democratic Club, and has served on the Democratic Party Executive Committee in Louisville. He began blogging in 2004, and currently operates two personal blogs ( and He founded Forward Kentucky in the wake of the state elections in 2015, and expanded it in the summer of 2016. He has lived in Louisville since 1992 with his wife and two sons.