Commonwealth Journal

Local News

January 29, 2014

124 file for May Primaries

Several races expected to be hotly contested

Somerset —

Filing deadline for candidates seeking local and regional offices subject to the May 20 primary elections passed at 4 p.m. yesterday and the three-month filing period produced a total of 124 candidates.  There are very few surprises but candidates did drop some fodder on which political analysts can chew:
✔ Republicans are whispering about Rodney Casada, former chair of the Pulaski County Democratic Party, getting in the judge-executive’s race. The local chiropractor, if he were to win, would be the third Democratic county judge since the Civil War. Some local political observers say privately Casada can cross party lines. Republicans don’t talk about it, but behind the security of a voting booth curtain, they have been known to mark an “X” under the rooster. Proof: Long-serving sheriff Gilmore Phelps, four-term county judge John W. Garner and Kenny Isaacs, former 1st District magistrate, all Democrats.
✔ Greg W. Speck, a retired com-mander of Kentucky State Police Post 15 at Columbia, is challenging incum-bent Todd Wood for Pulaski County sheriff. Almost at the last minute, Bill Scott, 312 Plantation Avenue, Somerset, got in the sheriff’s race. A political newcomer, Scott, 48, is a recent graduate of Somerset Com-munity College and a published author. A Republican, Scott said he is making applications for employment and filed for the sheriff’s job.
✔  There is standing room only in the contest for jailer. Nine candidates, obviously encouraged by a now-settled civil rights case, will try to unseat incumbent Mike Harris.
✔ Somerset Mayor Eddie Girdler is being challenged by City Councilor Jim Rutherford and businessman Alan Keck. With the specter of unified government casting a shadow on the mayoral race, a nonpartisan primary May 20 will send the two top vote-getters to the November 4 general election. 
✔ A citywide primary will also be held in the city’s 4th Ward where Joseph Wiles, son of former Mayor JP Wiles, and two others are challenging incumbent James C. (Jimmy) Eastham. The two top vote-getters will advance to November. Council races also developed in Wards 1, 2, 6 and 10, but in each of these four wards there are only two candidates and winners will be decided in November.

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