Bevin outlines priorities, calls for unity in inaugural address
New Gov. Matt Bevin urged Kentuckians to put aside their differences and come together for the good of the state during his inaugural address on the steps of the state Capitol.
But Bevin also Tuesday outlined a list of policy priorities sure to divide the state in the coming months. Chief among them is repealing the state’s Medicaid expansion and replacing it with a new system that would reduce the number of people receiving taxpayer-funded health insurance. He also promised to spend public dollars on private education programs to create competition for public schools.
Not mentioned was Bevin’s previous promise to protect the religious freedom of county clerks, including Kim Davis, who spent five days in jail for refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.
Jenean Hampton also spoke on the state Capitol steps Tuesday before she was sworn in as the state’s next lieutenant governor.
Hampton, who is Kentucky’s first black statewide elected official, spoke of her childhood in Detroit, where she was raised in poverty by a single mother. She said God sent her on an "incredible journey" from poverty to Kentucky’s second highest elected official and she believes she was "sent to serve."
Hampton also said she looks forward to the "daunting task" of putting Kentucky on solid financial footing. Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration has just a few weeks to put together a two-year spending plan for the state legislature to begin debating in the upcoming legislative session.