Quarles of the Republican Party announces her candidacy for Governor of Kentucky in 2023 | Health, medicine and fitness

By Bruce Schreiner – The Associated Press

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has entered the 2023 gubernatorial race as he looks to grow his ties to rural Republican districts in a winning formula in what is shaping up as a highly competitive race for the Republican nomination. Democratic Governor Andy Bashir Challenge.

Quarles told a Republican rally Saturday night in Lexington that he would seek the state’s highest elected office. He officially announced his candidacy in a taped WKYT-TV interview on the Kentucky Newsmakers Show that aired Sunday. Currels, a former state legislator, will follow up on a June 1 event in Scott County, where he belongs, to set his agenda for the state.

In a WKYT interview, Quarles touted his “strong record of executive leadership” and said there is a “undercurrent” of dissatisfaction that makes Beshear vulnerable.

Bashir will seek a second term in next year’s election, and recent polls have shown the governor receiving high ratings from Kentuckians for his job performance. The governor emphasized his leadership of the Bluegrass state’s economy while leading Kentucky during the COVID-19 pandemic. The state’s two biggest-ever economic development announcements — both involving battery production for electric cars — came during his tenure.

But the governor faces a tough re-election battle in a state that is leaning heavily toward Republicans.

Bashir’s handling of the pandemic will be an issue in the campaign. Quarles and other Republicans have asserted that he has gone too far by imposing restrictions during most of the pandemic. The governor says his actions saved lives, especially before vaccines became widely available.

Quarles, in his second term as Commissioner of Agriculture, has long been seen as a contender for the state’s governor. He has built his name recognition in rural Republican strongholds as he looks to develop a broad coalition. His entry into the race could signal a flurry of advertisements in the coming weeks and months from other Republicans looking to win the governor’s office.

At a Republican rally earlier Saturday in Oldham County, Quarles tried to connect Beshear with President Joe Biden, citing financial distress caused by high inflation and fuel prices.

“If there is one thing we can all agree on today, it is that both Governor Andy Beshear and President Biden both need to be members for one term,” Quarles said.

The emerging campaign for the next Republican governor-general’s nomination will split loyalty among the state’s growing Republican base.

Quarles said during WKYT, “We know it’s going to be a long process and it’s going to be a crowded primaries. And that’s okay. As the GOP grows, we’ll have to get more used to having primaries.”

State Auditor Mike Harmon He announced last year that he would seek the Republican nomination for governor.

Many other Republicans are seen as weighing the bids for governors, including Attorney General Daniel CameronFormer US Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft, state Senators Ralph Alvarado and Max Wise, Representative Savannah Maddox and Somerset Mayor Alan Keck.

With the prospect of a bitter free-for-all in the Republican primary, Alvarado referred to Ronald Reagan’s so-called “11th commandment” not to speak ill of his fellow Republicans.

Speaking at the GOP rally in Oldham County, Alvarado stressed that “if we are 80% in agreement, we are an ally and a friend and not that we are 20% against each other.”

“It’s important because the Democrats are going to try to use that against us and keep us divided,” he said.

Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams, a Republican, said Saturday that he expects a large field of Republican candidates for governor next year.

“I think we will need more papers for the ballot papers,” he said sarcastically.

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