Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Democrat Andy Beshear's push to legalize casino gambling in Kentucky is facing strong resistance from two leading Republican lawmakers, including one who supported the idea previously.

Beshear, who is running for governor, says Kentucky could reap $500 million-plus in yearly revenue by allowing expanded gambling. He wants the money to support public pension systems.

Senate President Robert Stivers and Majority Floor Leader Damon Thayer said Thursday that the proposal would be "dead on arrival" in the Republican-dominated Senate.

The GOP lawmakers say revenue estimates from casino gambling are overstated. Their statement comes less than three weeks before the Nov. 5 election pitting Beshear against Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.

Governor Matt Bevin has also responded with this statement: 

Thayer has pushed for legalized casino gambling in the past.

Beshear campaign manager Eric Hyers says Beshear still hopes for bipartisan support.