Saturday, March 23, 2002

Former governor won't run

Jones says family more important

The Associated Press

        FRANKFORT — Former Democratic Gov. Brereton Jones said “family considerations” would keep him out of the 2003 gubernatorial race.

        Mr. Jones faxed a statement from his Midway farm to news organizations Friday. He was reported to be out of state and not available for further comment.

        Mr. Jones, who served as lieutenant governor from 1987-91 and governor from 1991-95, said his decision had nothing to do with partisan politics.

        “Because of family considerations, this decision has been made by a family vote,” he said in his statement.

        Mr. Jones also appeared to close the door to any future political aspirations. He said he would “spend the rest of my life trying to be a good and productive citizen...”

        No Democrat has become a formal candidate to succeed Gov. Paul Patton, who has served the constitutional maximum of two consecutive terms.

        At least three current Democratic officeholders are expected to make the race — Attorney General Ben Chandler of Versailles, Lt. Gov. Steve Henry of Louisville and House Speaker Jody Richards of Bowling Green.

        The Republican field already has three candidates who have formed exploratory committees. Jefferson County Judge-executive Rebecca Jackson, state Rep. Steve Nunn of Glasgow and state Sen. Virgil Moore of Leitchfield.

        There are a number of other Republicans who are pondering a statewide campaign next year. The last time Kentucky elected a Republican governor was 1967.

        The gubernatorial primary is still 14 months away in May 2003.


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