Greg Fischer

Roundup: Demarcus does Romney, Richie does “Job Creation,” and more…

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November 18, 2011
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Sometimes we get behind. (Okay, we’re always behind.) And sometimes there’s so much going on it can’t all get the time it deserves. We’ve been busy, sorry. So… let’s fly through some stuff:

Ryan Alessi got the exclusive story of Mitt Romney’s recent campaign fundraiser… at which Jorts and Demarcus Cousins shared a stage with Mittens and gave the silvering fox a white UK cap. The event was organized by Romney’s KY finance chair, Mr. Joe Craft, who once told a crowd of people that everyone he went to high school with aspired only to drop out and live off the government but that he, Joe Craft, had a different dream… which was apparently to blow up mountains and rip off the people he grew up with. But that has less to do with Harrelson and Cousins showing up for Mitt. Or does it?

Continuing with basketball, if you follow the team, you must already know that Saturday’s game against a JoePa-less Penn State team is viewably only via this internet and only then if you have the correct internet provider. A lot of people are freaked out by this. What I find surprising is that they’ve never encountered this before. As a roving UK fan, I have crammed myself into all manner of places in order to find a game on a big(ger) screen and have seen many, many times, the internet-only ESPN3 games funneled through a series of tubes into regular televisions… most particularly at Jack Dempsey’s, the UK alumni bar in NYC. The HL article on this conundrum is sad mostly because a series of bars and restaurants have no idea what to do and only Pazzo’s has taken the time to figure out what is really really simple. So… Pazzo’s is going to be crazy tomorrow and every place else has about 24 hours to figure out how to connect the teevee to the internet.

And… continuing with basketball!… it appears Richie Farmer has blown one more thing handily — in the waning days of his failed run at Lt. Governor alongside (outgoing) State Senate President David Williams, Farmer hired his girlfriend at $5,000 a month. I would’ve dated Richie for $2,000 a month but perhaps I don’t have all the qualifications for the job Richie was trying to create.

Less basketbally (sorry, really), the LFUCG approved of the Gray/Fischer Lexi/ville “Super Region.” Which was a super surprising move on their part and an all-round super decision. Our council members are super. Super leaders, really. But seriously, this is super (really).

And somewhat less basketbally (like, if you want to consider this story in context of the Rupp Area development, then it’s kinda basketbally), the Distillery District public meeting went down last night. I was hoping to get there but, sadly, was/am a bit under the weather and failed. So I can’t tell you any more than what this article can and, really, it tells you a lot. (One has to wonder whether Mr. Kegley enjoys the escape of covering a story like this or if he spent the whole time wondering what killer crime stories he was missing… like the next Lexington Spiderman.) In brief, plans are coming along, though slowly (or, in the parlance of such things, deliberately) and there may be a plan of some sort by Spring 2012 but it may take longer and in all, includes streetscapes, walkways, etc etc. I’ll try to get more information because obviously this ties into that larger saga down the street but for the time being, Kegley take it away.

Rand Paul is leading the charge to end the Iraq War (while the rest of the Republican Party tries to crap all over President Obama for bringing all the troops home). But how do you end a war that was never started? Bush didn’t declare it and Congress never approved it as such, the Clintons, Kerrys and Edwards of the world just voted to okay invasion and then kept paying for it, but no one made the declarative statement. Here’s a question for a Friday: Is Rand’s move most similar to me declaring that America should land on the moon, or me asking Rand Paul when he stopped beating his wife? Feel free to discuss. Other hypotheticals accepted.

Okay. That was easy. A morning’s worth of news just breezes on by. G-d bless you all and G-d bless Kentucky.

Bluegrass Super Region Road Show comes to Lexington at Noon

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August 17, 2011
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Recently anointed “Super” Mayors Jim Gray and Greg Fischer will make their Louisville/Lexington (Lexiville? Louington? Greater Lexington?) “Super Region” presentation today at Noon.

If you want to see the event in person you can give Commerce Lexington, our local bureau of the Chamber of Commerce $45 and they’ll let you in and you, too, can be super (if only for an hour).

The event last week in Louisville was big on buzzwords (mostly from Fischer and their “super” moderator) and a little light on specifics, but hey, we’re just getting started here and it’s about damn time so no real complaints. And they’re promising more specifics at today’s event in Lexington.

Commerce Lexington, as you’ll recall, is the taxpayer funded wing of LFUCG that guides our economic development and lobbies local, state and federal government on behalf of King Coal, Big Insurance and Anti-Labor forces. (And more here.)

If you don’t want to give those folks any more of your hard earned dollars, you can stream the event live at the LFUCG website starting at 12:15.

The “Super” location for this “Super” summit: The Hyatt Regency’s Patterson Ballroom.

The Super-Region: Lexington and Louisville teaming up…

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August 11, 2011
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Here’s video of the event. At 45 minutes long, maybe you don’t have time to watch the whole thing though the first minute (the introductions with warbling, wobbling Superman theme) is worth it in its own cute way, and if you go a couple more minutes in, you’ll hear Mayor Gray recite (basically) the Twain quote at the top of this page.

They’re calling this super-region the Bluegrass Economic Advancement Movement — BEAM — which I’m guessing ain’t going to stick but who cares, it’s nice to see Kentucky’s two cities laying some groundwork to work together.

You can check out the C-J for more, and there are sure to be fuller reports tomorrow and in coming days:

Rather than rivals, Louisville and Lexington need to act as a single region of about 2 million people seeking manufacturing jobs in an increasingly urban world, the mayors of both cities said Thursday.

Greg Fischer of Louisville and Jim Gray of Lexington held their first public forum on a $250,000 joint economic development effort they announced in late June.

“We want the national decision makers, the international investment decision makers, to say, ‘we’ve got to play in the Bluegrass region,’” Fischer told a sold-out crowd of about 1,000 at Leadership Louisville’s 2011 luncheon at the Galt House. “So this is a question about us coming together and being cooperative.”

Fischer and Gray are looking for public input on how the two cities can work together, big and small, and one place you can start with your input (or to follow along with others’) is, of course, BEAM’s Facebook page.

Lexington / Louisville Mayors Gray & Fischer Head to Fankfort (UPDATE)

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February 10, 2011
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The Invaluable Herald Leader:

The new mayors of Kentucky’s two largest cities – Greg Fischer of Louisville and Jim Gray of Lexington — told state lawmakers Wednesday that they want to work with the legislature to create jobs.

It’s good to see these two Mayors working together.

Read on…

*UPDATE*
Here’s WAVE3′s report… with embeddable video that doesn’t work…

And FOX41′s… with embeddable video that slows the whole page down…

Aaaaand… it appears as though Lexington’s three stations totally ignored the event.

Greg Fischer on the Lex/Ville "Super Region!"

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February 6, 2011
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A Kentucky newspaper sat down with Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer to chat about his economic vision and the possibilities for partnership between Louisville & Lexington to form a “Super Region.” Here’s a video:

We are only one hour apart from each other. We have got to learn how to grow together if we expect to be relevant in terms of a city that’s on the national and international scene 20 years from now.

There’s no concrete plan for how this partnership might take shape exactly — we’re just dating right now, before we get married, Mayor Fischer said — it’s more about reimagining the relationship with an eye toward, yes, 20 years from now (that was a recurring theme from Fischer).

In general, though, Fischer and Gray seem to be thinking along the lines of how to market the two cities collectively to attract new (and big) employers and how to join together to lobby Frankfort (the urban caucus) for infrastructure improvements to draw those employers in.

There are areas for collaboration between the two big Universities, as well as between both cities’ health care sectors, etc., collectively leading toward a Silicon Valley-type corridor (which all sides stress is a model, not an expected full-blown achievement).

You can get all that, and more, from the video above or by clicking over to that website where it’s written up in words.

Jorts, UK Basketball Bring Louisville, Lexington Mayors Together

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January 5, 2011
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Last Friday, John Calipari’s University of Kentucky Wildcats demolished Rick Pitino’s Louisville Cardinals in a good ol’ game of RichieFarmerBall — thanks in large part to the play of Jorts’ lack of facial hair.

The rivalry game usually brings an outpouring of animosity between the state’s two largest cities and, of course, Kentucky fans relished in the defeat of Louisville… but this year, there was much more at stake than simple bragging rights.

Lexington and Louisville both have new mayors — Lexington for the first time in four long years and Louisville for the first time in modern history.

These two new Mayors — Jim Gray in Lex and Greg Fischer in L’ville — watched Friday’s game together and placed a friendly wager on the outcome.

Had Pitino won, Jim Gray would have been forced to decorate his new Mayoral desk with a Louisville Cardinal.

But Rick Pitino did not win. So… here’s a picture of Greg Fischer’s desk up in Louisville:

Mayor Fischer will spend his first week in office in the state’s key economic portal with that little Wildcat rooting him on.

And for good reason. As Tom Eblen detailed in this past Sunday’s Herald-Leader, Gray and Fischer have similar backgrounds (Businessman-Mayor’s with progressive politics and sound judgment), and their simultaneous elections and mutual understanding of 21st Century economics may just usher in a new (and long overdue) age of regional cooperation:

Anyone who has lived in Kentucky very long knows Lexington and Louisville are separated by much more than 75 miles of Interstate 64 and a blue vs. red college sports rivalry.

The state’s two largest cities have always been insular in ways that no longer make economic sense. That is because success in a 21st-century global economy can be as much about collaboration as competition — and a lot more about regions than cities.

Kentucky’s business and civic leaders have been slowly coming around to this idea. But the election of new mayors with similar backgrounds, outlooks and goals could be a game-changer.

Be sure to read Eblen’s entire article… the possible cooperation between these two cities as the next four years unfold is definitely worth watching. Outside the pure righteousness of coal, the entire state’s economy may well depend on these two Mayor’s forging a more perfect commonwealth.

Last Gasp

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November 2, 2010
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Against my better judgment, I unenthusiastically walked across the U of L campus in high heels, with a sore leg and shoulder, in order to see Bubba with Sen. Dreamboat. I was very tired and cranky and grew increasingly irritated with “bike helmet dude” and the hipster DJs, but I was really glad to see some familiar faces in the crowd. Someone tried to get me with a Greg Fischer sticker, but I wasn’t having any of that. Anyway, I took some pictures.

First up, Embryo Jesus dude. I’ve seen him on mornings I’ve escorted. I think his hat said something about birth control being murder, too. I assume he’s voting for Rand Paul.

An SGA senator began the festivities and introduced the Mayor for Life. I forget her name. (Sorry, miss!)

Mayor Jerry Abramson talked about how awesome Democrats are because they built Waterfront Park and Slugger Field. Wevs.

State Sen. Gerald Neal tried to work the crowd up, but everyone seemed to have a case of the Mondays.

This is “The Thinker.” Several of the evenings’ speakers made reference to the statue. Anyway, I think it’s pretty cool.

Gov. Papaw said that tomorrow, Sen. Mitch McConnell and St. Paul II would be posed like “The Thinker,” wondering what went wrong. My bet is more facepalm than pensive, though.

Louisville mayoral candidate Greg Fischer said that “The Thinker” would come to life and make a touchdown pose or something. Yeah. He also talked about how his opponent, Hal Heiner, hates the gays. Also, he did that weird hand thing that some politicians do.

Congressman Awesome brought the snark, and the sporty casualwear.

Sen. Dreamboat and Pres. Clinton were up next. At this point, the sun had gone down, I couldn’t really figure my camera out, and my feet were cold and hurting. Conway hit the talking points he’s been hitting the last few weeks. He missed an opportunity to hit Paul hard on contraception, but did manage to get a few jabs in about education. Pres. Clinton dropped knowledge all over the place and was very compelling to listen to. I still kind of hate him over PRWORA, though.

Stop pouting, start running

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August 11, 2008
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Less than 3 months until the election, and Greg Fischer is still hinting that Lunsford has to do more to get him to help out, and Ben Chandler still hasn’t officially endorsed him.

Either these folks need to stop pouting, or Lunsford’s campaign is woefully negligent in reaching out to them.

Less than 90 days folks.

And when will those ads showing Mitch McConnell filibustering to block health care benefits for children, vets and Medicare recipients be hitting the airwaves??? It’s time for some real offense.

Please don’t screw up this opportunity, peeps….

Lumbergh!

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May 26, 2008
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I know I probably shouldn’t do this, but….

I finally realized who our recently departed Senate candidate reminded me of.

Again, my apologies, but… I can’t help it. He’s a good guy, but honesty compels me.

Senate Primary Number crunching (corrected)

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May 21, 2008
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Candidate Party Votes Overall % Overall Percent
Bruce Lunsford D 316,760 51.1% 51.1% percent of the vote
Greg Fischer D 209,721 33.9% 33.9% percent of the vote
David L. Williams D 34,339 5.5% 5.5% percent of the vote
James E. Rice D 20,384 3.3% 3.3% percent of the vote
Michael Cassaro D 17,344 2.8% 2.8% percent of the vote
Kenneth Stepp D 13,443 2.2% 2.2% percent of the vote
David Wylie D 7,515 1.2% 1.2% percent of the vote

- The polls appeared to be right on, with Fischer narrowing the gap due to Lunsford not even trying some type of GOTV effort.

- Williams beats 4 other candidates. Amazing. James Friggin’ Rice beats Michael Cassaro. The Cassaro Girls weep tonight… (But at least he held off Stepp)

Fayette County #’s

Candidate Party Votes Overall % Overall Percent
Greg Fischer D 18,878 47.0% 47.0% percent of the vote
Bruce Lunsford D 17,039 42.4% 42.4% percent of the vote

Fayette was the only county Fischer won.

Actually, that’s way off. Fischer won in the in the Paducah market and almost took Frankfort.

Jefferson County #’s

Candidate Party Votes Overall % Overall Percent
Bruce Lunsford D 62,728 48.4% 48.4% percent of the vote
Greg Fischer D 50,549 39.0% 39.0% percent of the vote

Those were Fischer’s 2 best counties, Bruce cleaned up elsewhere, up 20-30 points in most other counties.

See correction, above.

But check out the Republican side:

Candidate Party Votes Overall % Overall Percent
Mitch McConnell R 167,956 86.1% 86.1% percent of the vote
Daniel Essek R 27,159 13.9% 13.9% percent of the vote

That’s 27,159 Republicans who took time out of their weekday to go vote against Mitch McConnell. And Jefferson County? – 5,719 Republicans voted against him.

How do you think Anne Northup feels about the fact that 5,719 Louisville Republicans felt the need to give Mitch McConnell an FU vote? The fate of the Republican Party in Louisville is starting to mirror the rest of the country. People are fed up with the incompetence of the Republican Party and they have had enough.

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