A Full Plate at the Bluegrass BBQ
At the first Bluegrass Barbeque, Bruce Lunsford and Greg Stumbo were met by a larger-than-expected crowd. More than 200 people showed up at the St. Matthews Community Center to ask the candidates about their stance on a variety of issues, from health care and education to pensions, the environment and a cigarette tax.
Several folks came simply to shake hands with Bruce and Greg, look them in the eye and take the measure of the men who seek to bring real change to state government in Kentucky.
While the standing-room-only crowd may have arrived with a hunger for barbeque, they also brought plenty of ideas and questions for the Democratic candidates. A dozen hands shot up when Bruce opened the forum up for questions, and he assured the audience hed get to all of them.
Dont worry, Greg and I are here to talk with you and well stay until weve answered all your questions, he said.
And for the next hour or so, the candidates did just that. When there was a question about, for example, the Kentucky Education Reform Act, which Greg sponsored in the legislature 17 years ago, Bruce deferred to his running mate. Bruce and Greg shared the stage, taking on more than a dozen inquiries from concerned voters.
In the audience were students from nearby Trinity High School, who asked several questions about education. The crowd included senior citizens, African-Americans and young families, some with babies in tow.
Applause rang out several times during the evening, once in response to a comment from Ace Burke, a retired United Mine Workers union member from Prestonsburg. Burke said hed be proud to sit in the front seat with Bruce or Greg. There were more shouts of approval when the campaigns first TV commercial was mentioned.
Several others responded directly to Bruces talk, encouraging him to get it done.
The Bluegrass Barbecues are a key part of the campaigns effort to reach out to voters. There are three scheduled for next week in Elizabethtown, Lexington and Somerset.
Posted by: on 03/22/2007 at 2:30 p.m.