No, this isn’t your local used car salesman. It’s Larry Clark, Kentucky’s House Speaker Pro-Tem. First elected in 1984, Clark is infamous for his aggressive style of leadership. However, Republicans have turned up the heat on Clark in hopes of an early retirement.
In 2010, moderate Republican Brian Simpson took Clark to the wire after persuading this union-heavy district to oust the political dinosaur. Simpson defeated Clark in 12 of 27 precincts, losing by single digits in a handful of others. In 2012, Clark easily won re-election.
This year, Clark is being challenged by Republican David Rainey. An Iraq veteran turned lawyer, Rainey presents a diverse background in service and knowledge to the voters of this South-Central Louisville district. Though Rainey doesn’t appear to be shaking the fundraising tree’s as hard as other House challengers, he has certainly acquired the assistance of two political ally’s who share the same territory. Both State Senator Dan Seum & Metro Councilman James Peden both represent many of the same precincts that Rainey must flip from Clark.
In an area where UPS & Ford union employee’s rule, Rainey has a unique challenge of voter identification and community issues ahead of his fall campaign. Topics such as “right to work” aren’t at the top of the list for area voters. If Rainey is to win in 14′, touting the typical GOP punchlines may hurt more than help. This district does vote Republican nationally, but can Rainey upset one of Frankfort’s top Democrat officials? We think so.
— Joe Arnold (@joearnoldreport) January 22, 2014