In Kentucky the Democrats and Republicans don’t agree on much. But they certainly agree that they do not want competition from any third parties. This year the vast majority of Democrats and Republicans in the General Assembly passed House Bill 114. Among other things this bill retroactively changed the filing deadline for third party candidates, making it virtually impossible for any third party candidates to appear on the ballot in 2019. The Libertarian Party of Kentucky sued in Federal Court to reverse the effect of the bill. Federal Judge William Bertelsman called the actions of the General Assembly and Governor Bevin, who signed the emergency bill into law, “arbitrary and capricious”. The Judge ordered that Libertarian candidates be put on the ballot for the November 5, 2019 General Election.
But the collusion between Democrats and Republicans did not end there. The duopoly failed to block third party candidates from the ballot, so they changed tactics and now are colluding to block third party candidates from the debate stage. They have conspired with Kentucky Educational Television (KET), the Kentucky League of Women Voters, and Northern Kentucky University1 to prevent John Hicks, Libertarian Party candidate for Governor of Kentucky, from appearing in any of the five televised debates with the duopoly candidates.
John Hicks is the first Libertarian in Kentucky history to run for governor. He is an alternative to the bi-polar candidates of the duopoly. As Republicans shift to the right, becoming more autocratic, and Democrats shift to the left, becoming more socialistic, Mr. Hicks advocates for lower taxes and less government spending. He advocates for personal freedom when it comes to lifestyle choices. He would release people who are imprisoned by the state for victimless crimes. He would honor past contracts with state employees and push for fair, defined-contribution contracts in the future. He would legalize marijuana. He would sell the governor’s jet and use the money to pay teachers’ pensions. He and his running mate, Ann Cormican for Lieutenant Governor, are pro life but also see the need to protect citizens from zealots who want to criminalize birth control and imprison women for having miscarriages, as has happened in autocratic third-world countries.
The Democrats and Republicans in Kentucky have a stranglehold on the voting process. The process is neither fair nor representative. It is skewed and that makes it corrupt. According to the Gallup Poll, 31% of Americans identify as Democrat, 24% identify as Republican, and 42% identify as Independent, including Libertarians. John Hicks is reaching out to Independents, Libertarians and those Democrats and Republicans who are tired of voting for the lesser of two evils. But the two candidates who will be on the debate stage represent only the old parties, the smallest segments of the population.
So, why hasn’t John Hicks been invited to participate in the gubernatorial debates? Because he threatens the status quo. Because he has new ideas that threaten the “old guard” in Frankfort. Voting in Kentucky is controlled by a cabal of political insiders who like things just the way they are. They like their odds with a two-party system that controls access to the ballot and restricts voters from hearing alternative points of view. John Hicks is running for office because the two-party system is broken and corrupt; because he represents Independent voters, the largest segment of the population; because Kentucky’s destiny should not be left in the hands of a corrupt and powerful political minority.
See more about John Hicks, Libertarian candidate for Governor of Kentucky, at his website: HicksCormicanForKentucky.com
1 Northern Kentucky University has not invited Mr. Hicks to participate in their 10/29/2019 gubernatorial debate. WLWT TV5 is televising the debate at NKU. Bill Hager, managing editor of WLWT, contacted us to say that NKU is following historical guidelines established by WLWT for televising debates. He said the goal of WLWT is to give voters “the clearest look at candidates most likely to win the race.” We believe this is an inappropriate overreach of media influence upon the voting process. We find the guidelines used by WLWT, the League of Women Voters and KET to be arbitrary and unnecessary because they supercede the decision of the Kentucky Secretary of State regarding candidate eligibility.