State of Kentucky Archives: on Jobs


Amy McGrath: Pro-union, supports gradual rise of minimum wage to $15/hour

Q: Support "right to work" laws? Raise federal minimum wage above $7.25?

Amy McGrath: "Unions have protected Kentucky workers for generations." Celebrates "the progress of organized labor in this country." Supports a gradual rise to $15 an hour.

Mitch McConnell: Has "continually supported legislation at the federal level to enact right-to-work nationwide." A minimum wage hike would "kill jobs and depress the economy."

Source: CampusElect on 2020 Kentucky Senate race Oct 10, 2020

Mitch McConnell: Supports right to work laws; against minimum wage hike

Q: Support "right to work" laws? Raise federal minimum wage above $7.25?

Mitch McConnell: Has "continually supported legislation at the federal level to enact right-to-work nationwide." A minimum wage hike would "kill jobs and depress the economy."

Amy McGrath: "Unions have protected Kentucky workers for generations." Celebrates "the progress of organized labor in this country." Supports a gradual rise to $15 an hour.

Source: CampusElect on 2020 Kentucky Senate race Oct 10, 2020

Steven Cox: Stop misuse of work visas to protect American workers

Steve will work to stop the misuse of work visas created by HR-1044 and S-386, ensuring every American worker has the opportunity to provide for their families.
Source: 2020 Kentucky Senate campaign website CoxForUS.com Jun 9, 2020

Steven Cox: Right to work laws threaten our freedom

Union Rights: "Right-to-work" laws threaten our freedom to organize and bargain for better working conditions. We need to protect our rights to fight for better workplaces.
Source: 2020 Kentucky Senate website CoxForUS.com Feb 6, 2020

Andy Beshear: It's time equal work results in equal pay

It means our economic approach must be grounded in creating good-paying, family-supporting jobs across our commonwealth, and not just increasing corporate profits. And that those good jobs must pay a woman the same as they would a man. In 2020, it's time equal work results in equal pay.
Source: 2020 Kentucky State of the State address Jan 14, 2020

C. Wesley Morgan: Make Kentucky a Right to Work State

Like my friend Governor Bevin, I am a supporter of making Kentucky a Right to Work State. Employees should not be forced to enter a contract with a union if they do not wish to.
Source: Ballotpedia.org Connection: 2020 Kentucky Senate race Sep 9, 2019

Andy Beshear: Repay miners who remain unpaid due to mine bankruptcy

Virginia and Kentucky are working to get over 1,000 workers paid after a coal operator with mines in both states unexpectedly slammed its doors. Approximately 480 Virginia miners and 600 Kentucky miners missed their last paychecks after Blackjewel LLC filed for bankruptcy on July 1.

In a joint letter sent yesterday, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring & Kentucky Attorney General Andy Beshear asked the Office of the United States Trustee to ensure the "immediate repayment" of paychecks owed to workers. "All workers who have labored for the company and are owed back wages should be made whole. And they should be made whole immediately," the attorneys general wrote.

Herring & Beshear said Blackjewel's poor financial planning led to its "haphazard" bankruptcy wherein it issued paychecks backed by insufficient funds.

"Despite knowing for years of its precarious financial situation, the Debtor did nothing to prepare itself or its workforce for this month's bankruptcy," the letter said.

Source: The Dogwood Daily on 2019 Kentucky gubernatorial race Jul 17, 2019

Andy Beshear: Grow our economy with skill training, not CEO giveaways

Under Matt Bevin, Kentucky is near the bottom in the nation for job and wage growth. I will work every day to bring good-paying jobs that enable our hardworking men and women to raise their families. My vision for growing our economy doesn't depend on massive give-aways for wealthy out-of-state CEOs like we've seen from Matt Bevin. We should be investing in our workforce and focusing on the areas in which Kentucky is uniquely positioned to lead, like agritech and healthcare.

We must prepare our workforce for the 21st century in jobs well-suited for Kentucky in fields like agritech, automation, data analytics and healthcare; we can build an economy and workforce for the future. In a global economy, it's vitally important that skills training continue after high school. As governor, I'll promote apprenticeship training. In order to attract businesses to our state, we need an educated and highly-trained workforce.

Source: 2019 Kentucky Gubernatorial campaign website AndyBeshear.com May 2, 2019

Andy Beshear: Wrong that women make significantly less than men

Equal Pay: It's wrong and absurd that women in Kentucky make significantly less than men for doing the same job. As the father of both a son and a daughter, this is personal for me. Kentuckians should not be paid different amounts just because of their sex. This is common sense and as governor I'll work to eliminate this pay gap.
Source: 2019 Kentucky Gubernatorial campaign website AndyBeshear.com May 2, 2019

Andy Beshear: Support prevailing wage law; oppose Right-To-Work laws

I oppose so-called Right-To-Work (for less) laws that undermine workers' rights, and every year as governor, I will support a bill to repeal this law and reinstate the prevailing wage law. Right-To-Work (for less) results in lower wages and fewer benefits for working families. Unlike this governor, I understand that our economy is stronger when working families make a truly living wage. As governor, my labor secretary will be a card-carrying union member.
Source: 2019 Kentucky Gubernatorial campaign website AndyBeshear.com May 2, 2019

Matt Bevin: Right-to-work instead of prevailing wage

Bevin praised the legislature for enacting right to work, and a repeal of prevailing wage. He said those changes have contributed to nearly $18 billion in new private capital investments and almost 50,000 new jobs for the state.
Source: Press release on Kentucky 2019 State of the State address Feb 9, 2019

Adam Edelen: Ensure that Kentucky workers are paid a living wage

A Living Wage: Right, Just & Long Overdue: We can't move the Commonwealth forward without accepting the fact that working people are working harder than ever while wages in Kentucky, like much of the country, have grown stagnant.

It is unacceptable for a Kentucky family to work hard every day only to find themselves unable to meet even their most basic needs. Adam Edelen supports ensuring that Kentucky workers are paid a living wage.

Source: 2019 Kentucky governor campaign website AdamEdelen.com Dec 31, 2018

Rocky Adkins: Focus on fair wages for 21st century jobs

Kentucky's economy is changing, and we must be innovative and collaborative so we can bring new opportunities to our state. Aerospace exports brought $11.7 billion to Kentucky in 2017, which was $1 billion more than the previous year. This means opportunity for Kentuckians. We must work to bring 21st century jobs, like those in the aerospace industry and other high-demand sectors, to our state. We need to focus on jobs that provide a fair wage and economic growth, not just in our big cities, but also in our rural areas. We also must offer job-training programs and affordable post-secondary education opportunities so people gain the skills necessary to secure these jobs. Economic development is not an overnight deal; it's a 30-year investment and we must keep that commitment to the people of the Commonwealth.
Source: 2019 Kentucky governor campaign website RockyAdkins.com Dec 31, 2018

Matt Bevin: Minimum wage stifles job creation; reduce to $7.25

Republican Gov. Matt Bevin reversed former Gov. Steve Beshear's June 8 executive order that raised the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour for hundreds of the lowest-paid workers in state government's executive branch and the employees of vendors who signed contracts with the executive branch.

An estimated 800 state workers who already have received pay raises as a result of Beshear's order may keep them, but all new state hires will start at the previously established pay scale, Bevin said. The current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

"The minimum wage stifles job creation and disproportionately impacts lower skilled workers seeking entry-level jobs," Bevin wrote in his executive order. "Wage rates ideally would be established by the demands of the labor market instead of being set by the government."

Source: Lexington Herald Leader on 2015 Kentucky gubernatorial race Dec 22, 2015

Steve Beshear: Raise state worker minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10

Republican Gov. Matt Bevin filed five executive orders to start reshaping state government along conservative ideological lines, including one that reversed earlier executive orders by former Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear for a higher minimum wage for state workers and employees of state vendors.

Beshear's June 8 executive order raised the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour for hundreds of the lowest-paid workers in state government's executive branch and the employees of vendors who signed contracts with the executive branch.

An estimated 800 state workers who already have received pay raises as a result of Beshear's order may keep them, but all new state hires will start at the previously established pay scale, Bevin said. The current minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

Source: Lexington Herald Leader on 2015 Kentucky gubernatorial race Dec 22, 2015

Jack Conway: Right to organize is pathway to middle class

Jack believes that the right to organize is fundamental for American workers and is a pathway to the middle class for many Kentucky families. The Conway-Overly ticket has received endorsements from the Teamsters, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, the Boilermakers, IUE-CWA, United Auto Workers, the United Food and Commercial Workers, and the Jefferson County Teachers Association.
Source: 2015 Kentucky Governor campaign website, ConwayOverly.com Aug 11, 2015

Matt Bevin: Replace prevailing wage requirements with Right-to-Work

Labor Law Reform: Our plan will update our current labor laws that currently result in self-inflicted economic wounds. This begins with passing comprehensive Right to Work legislation and eliminating prevailing wage requirements for state contracts.
Source: 2015 Kentucky Gubernatorial campaign website, MattBevin.com Aug 11, 2015

Alison Grimes: Increase the minimum wage to a living wage

In order to grow our middle class, we must raise the minimum wage to help hardworking Americans achieve a basic standard of living. 2/3 of minimum wage workers in the US are women. Consider a single working mother of two who makes the current federal minimum wage who brings home just $14,500 annually--nearly $4,000 below the poverty line.

Rather than forcing our own neighbors to choose between putting food on the table, getting to work and paying the rent, all Americans deserve a living wage that is consistent with our values. Raising the minimum wage would increase incomes for more than 30 million US workers, and is an important step to ensure workers see the benefits of a growing economy. Doing so would:

Source: 2014 Senate campaign website AlisonForKentucky.com "Issues" Feb 3, 2014

Steve Beshear: Jobless rate is falling; Kentucky now 2nd in job growth

My immediate goal during the recession was to help our families and businesses survive. But merely surviving was not enough. So we also acted strategically to preserve our ability to make investments in our people and infrastructure that would strengthen Kentucky's long-term capacity. By embracing tough but thoughtful fiscal decisions, you and I brought Kentucky through the worst recession of our lifetimes better than most other states, and today our economic momentum is gaining national recognition. We've made a lot of progress. For example, our one-year net job growth recently ranked second in the nation, and our current unemployment rate is the lowest in over four years. That jobless rate has fallen almost 25% in two years. In fact, we're now adding jobs at the pre-recession pace.
Source: 2013 State of the State speech to Kentucky Legislature Feb 6, 2013

Jack Conway: 20% hometown tax credit for cost of creating a new job

CONWAY: Chris, I'm proposing a hometown tax credit, a 20% tax credit, for the cost of creating a new job. I think it's important that Americans see that our government is not just growing but that we're providing the incentives for the private sector to grow us out of the recession. I also think that we need to get the small and community banks lending once again, because the government bailed out a bunch of big banks on Wall Street, and these regulators have come down awfully hard on the small communit banks.

PAUL: But here's the problem. You say you want new lending from small banks, but you support the banking regulation bill. The problem was with government banks--Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac--bad policy at the Federal Reserve caused the recession, caused the credit crunch. But yet Jack supports--President Obama supports--the new banking regulations, which every bank in Kentucky will tell you it wasn't our problem. No banks failed in Kentucky. But it's much harder to get a loan in Kentucky now.

Source: Fox News Sunday, 2010 Kentucky Senate debate Oct 3, 2010

Bruce Lunsford: Agrees with all issues that AFL-CIO has asked him to support

Throughout the forum, McConnell returned over and over to three themes--energy, clout and what he said was Lunsford’s allegiance to the AFL-CIO. He said the labor organization is diametrically opposed to the interests of the farm bureau.

McConnell said that Republicans have the best solutions for high gas prices and that as Senate minority leader he can get more done than a freshman Democrat. And he said that the labor unions supporting Lunsford would control him in Washington. “I’m not there to do the bidding of organized labor like my opponent,” McConnell said. “If they deliver for him, believe me, he’ll deliver for them.”

Afterward, Lunsford said that he has met with the AFL-CIO and other labor groups and that he has no problem with any of the issues they asked him to support. But he said he isn’t under the union’s thumb. “I don’t think I’ll be a puppet for anyone,” he said.

Source: 2008 Kentucky Senate debate reported in Courier-Journal Aug 21, 2008

James Comer: Don't require comparable pay regardless of gender

Excerpts from legislation: KRS 337.423 is amended to read as follows: "Comparable worth" means the value of the work measured by the skill, effort and responsibility usually required in the performance of the work. No employer shall discriminate between employees in the same establishment on the basis of sex, by paying wages to any employee in any occupation in this state at a rate less than the rate at which he pays any employee of the opposite sex for [comparable] work on jobs of comparable worth and which have comparable requirements relating to skill, effort and responsibility. Differentials which are paid pursuant to established seniority systems or merit increase systems, which do not discriminate on the basis of sex, shall not be included within this prohibition.

Legislative outcome: Jamie Comer voted NAY on HB 399: Wage Discrimination Bill, Passed House 72-22-6

Source: Kentucky legislative voting records: HB 399 Mar 1, 2006

Rocky Adkins: Require comparable pay regardless of gender

Excerpts from legislation: KRS 337.423 is amended to read as follows: "Comparable worth" means the value of the work measured by the skill, effort and responsibility usually required in the performance of the work. No employer shall discriminate between employees in the same establishment on the basis of sex, by paying wages to any employee in any occupation in this state at a rate less than the rate at which he pays any employee of the opposite sex for [comparable] work on jobs of comparable worth and which have comparable requirements relating to skill, effort and responsibility. Differentials which are paid pursuant to established seniority systems or merit increase systems, which do not discriminate on the basis of sex, shall not be included within this prohibition.

Legislative outcome:Rep. Adkins voted YEA on HB 399: Wage Discrimination Bill, Passed House 72-22-6

Source: Kentucky legislative voting records: HB 399 Mar 1, 2006

  • The above quotations are from Commonwealth of Kentucky Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Jobs.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Jobs:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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