When the polls close on Tuesday, more Kentuckians will be interested in confirming their flight to see the first University of Kentucky men’s basketball game in Brooklyn, New York, than confirming that the Commonwealth went red.
And who could blame them? After all, it would be one of the biggest surprises in television history since “Who shot J.R.?” if the nation were to tune in and see that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney only won Kentucky by 9 percentage points. Romney currently has at least a 14-point lead. The last time Kentucky sent its Electoral College votes to a Democrat was when former President Bill Clinton won the state 1992 and 1996.
That said the biggest race in Kentucky is not the presidential race. It is the race for the House of Representatives, both on the state and federal level. Kentucky state Republicans could take control of the House of Representatives for the first time since 1921, and Democrat U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler is in serious danger of being unseated by Republican Andy Barr in the battle for the 6th District after seeing his 14-point lead virtually disappear. Chandler only beat Barr by 648 votes last time they faced off for the House two years ago.
If Barr defeats Chandler, it would make Kentucky’s congressional delegation more red that it has ever been. The only Democrat in the state delegation would be Rep. John Yarmuth, of Louisville, who is poised to defeat his two underfunded challengers, Republican Brooks Wicker and Independent Robert DeVore Jr., in the 3rd District.
Although Kentucky’s eight Electoral College votes have been guaranteed to any Republican challenger since Barack Obama was first sworn in as president, the races to watch in Kentucky are for Congress and the state House of Representatives.
PolicyMic will cover the 2012 election from the state of Kentucky live. For updates, bookmark and refresh this page.
UPDATE: 11:09 PM
Despite Republicans picking up several seats, the Democrats will retain control of the Kentucky House of Representatives. Final total is Democrats 55, Republicans 45.
UPDATE: 10:25 PM
The lastest Kentucky House results. There are several races that have not yet been called.
Here is my article on Andy Barr's shocking win over Ben Chandler in the 6th Congressional District. I'm still shocked about that. This is still the look on my face:
UPDATE: 10:16 PM
Here are the latest results for the Kentucky Sentate. There is only district not called is District 3, where Democrat Joey Pendleton is battling Republican Whitney Westerfield. But with 61 percent of precincts reporting, Pendleton has 54% of the vote.
UPDATE: 10:08 PM
Sorry for the long delay, but I just wrote a quick story about Andy Barr's victory, which should be published on PolicyMic soon.
Here are the final numbers from the Kentucky congressional elections. Republicans one the day as John Yarmuth is the only remaining Democratic member. Kentucky's two U.S. Senators are, of course, Mitch McConnel and Rand Paul.
Update: 8:50 PM
Here is an article from the Lexington Herald-Leader on Chandler's fall. It's the first time in a long time that no one named Chandler holds a political seat, on any level, in Kentucky.
This result is likely a direct result of growing disdain for the Democratic Party and President Barack Obama in Kentucky. The 6th District that Chandler held includes the major city of Lexington, Ky., which in the past has shown strong numbers for Democrats in the past. In the last election, Chandler narrowly defeated Barr by less than 700 votes.
UPDATE: 8:39 PM Big Blue Nation Sees Red as Chandler Falls
The Lexington Herald-Leader has called it for Andy Barr. The Chandler Dynasty has fallen in Kentucky as the 6th District in the U.S. House of Representatives goes red. Chandler had served in the U.S. House since 2004. There is only one remaining Democrat congressional member in Kentucky, John Yarmuth.
All the Democrats in KY are like:
All the Republicans are like:
UPDATE: 8:31 PM
Local Louisville news stations are reporting that Ben Chandler has been unseated by Andy Barr. The Republicans are set to gain a seat in the U.S. House. Chandler may or may not be picking up his phone to call Barr.
UPDATE: 8:26 PM
Rep. John Yarmuth just gave his victory speech in Louisville. He stated, "Louisville, working for you has been the biggest honor of my life."
UPDATE: 8:24 PM
It's getting late early for Ben Chandler. With 79 percent in, he still trails by 5 percent.
UPDATE: 8:14 PM
Ben Chandler still trails Andy Barr by 7 percent, with 60 percent of the precincts reporting. Fayette County and Woodford County have not yet reported.
Also, I think it might be safe to say that this is the only day of the year when most Kentuckians wish they were were domiciled and registered to vote in Ohio.
UPDATE: 8:05 PM
In other not-at-all surprising U.S. House news:
And after trailing badly 3 to 33, Obama has come roaring back to take a 17 Electoral College vote lead over challenger Mitt Romney. (Insert sarcasm here).
Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.
UPDATE: 7:41 PM
Andy Barr is destroying Ben Chandler right now. With 29 percent reporting he has opened up a 7 percent lead or roughly 7,000 votes.
UPDATE: 7:32 PM
Here are the lastest numbers for the Kentucky House of Representative. This is one of the most important races in Kentucky as Republicans have the opportunity to take control for the first time since 1921. Here are the numbers for the Kentucky Senate.
In other news, Ohio is closed y'all. OHIO IS CLOSED!
UPDATE: 7:25 PM
Andy Bar still has a lead over Ben Chandler. With 13 percent of the precincts reporting, Bar has a razor then 20 vote lead. This one is going to be a ride to the end, and its going go down to the wire. Someone is going to come so close, and get no cigar.
UPDATE: 7:16 PM Obama Has Two Speeches?
ABC News is keeps mentioning that Obama has two speeches (one for victory, one for concession for those who need the help), and that Romney has written one (for victory, of course). Big deal? No.
UPDATE: 7:13 PM Lastest KY Polls
With 7 percent of the precincts reporting, Andy Bar holds almost a 500 vote lead over Ben Chandler in the race for the U.S. House, 6th District. This one is going to be close folks.
UPDATE: 7:12 PM
PolicyMic editor Chris Miles is reporting that, according to exit polls, that the economy is the main issue for voters this election. This is not too surprising. The economy seems to take precedence over other civil, fundamental rights that have emerged over the past four year. People tend to feel the crunch in their wallets before most often.
ABC News has called Kentucky and Indiana for Romney, and Vermont for Obama. No surprise there at all. Everyone has there eyes on major battleground states that are closing within the next 15 minutes.
UPDATE: 6:55 PM
Here are the lastest poll numbers for Kentucky, paying attention to U.S. House of Representatives 6th District andthe State House of Representatives District 88. Thanks to the Lexington Herald-Leader.
UPDATE: 6:43 PM
U.S. Representative, 2nd District:
Guthrie (R): 1,331
Williams (D): 713
Beacham (I): 47
Astor (L): 38
UPDATE: 6:20 PM Numbers Are Coming In
For Jefferson Co., Barack Obama leads Mitt Romney by 200 votes. Obama is expected win the major cities in Kentucky, but will ultimately lose the state to Romney.
U.S. House of Representative results and Kentucky House of Representatives and Senate results to follow.
UPDATE: 6:00 PM First Polls Close
The first wave of polls are closing in Kentucky. If you aren't in line, you are out of luck. Even with zero percent of the precincts reporting, I want to go ahead and call Kentucky for Mitt Romney. But, it's like the Kool-Aid man busting through the wall and yelling "Romney," getting blank stares, and then slowly backing out and saying that he'll be back later because no polls have reported. I'll wait until all the polls close at 7 p.m. EST to call it.
Here's a visual:
UPDATE: 5:20 PM Allegations of Vote Buying in Fayette Co.
The Lexington Hearld-Leader is reporting allegations of vote buying in Fayette County. To say that this is extremely unfortunate would be an understatement. The complaint was received by the Kentucky Board of Elections and the Kentucky Election Integrity Task Force. Complaints, which total 11 from Fayette Co., are forwarded to Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway. Read more here.
UPDATE: 12:40 PM I voted!
Today is the day, and I just voted! I urge you all to go out and do the same! It will make you feel like this:
Basically, its "I Voted" sticker > Gold Star.
Overall, my polling place was an orderly mess. If that makes any sense. Two precincts are voting at the same location, but I was still able to get in and out in less than 30 minutes.
In Kentucky, polls are open until 6 p.m. local time. As long as you are in line by 6 p.m. local time you should be allowed to vote with proper identifcation. Happy voting you all!
And just in case, staffers in Kentucky are handling the election fraud hotline so voters who see any irregularities can report them. The hotline number is (800) 328-8683.