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Time for Kentucky Republicans to earn their votes


Time for Kentucky Republicans to earn their votes

By Jeff Jobe
Jobe For Kentucky

It has been the better part of 30 years for me in the newspaper industry.   They say time flies when you are having fun but I also contend that it surely does as well when you are newspaper publisher struggling inside a downward trending business economy and a dad doing his part in raising three children. 

Seems like yesterday I was upset when Ross Perot introduced his choice of James Stockdale for his Vice Presidential running mate and immediately my hopes of having someone with a business understanding in our government's top office was gone.  

An experienced business leader wouldn't allow the social bickering to take his eyes off the main tasks of defending us internationally or assuring us of a strong bottom line by monitoring expenses and growing revenue. 

In the business world we know you either cut yourself out of a bad year or sell your way out of it.  The problem with the past 8 years, business owners were handicapped with limited growth because of government mandates and regulations; so our only choice was to cut and we did.  

The liberals would characterize profits and refusal to spend as some means to grow CEO compensation or hurt our country.   This helped further their position of distrust of corporations in favor of their union friends.   

After nearly three decades of selling or covering news, I have not witnessed politicians as bold as we see today and this is a good sign to me. 

If you pay attention in politics you already know that the biggest voting blocks and/or money in Kentucky comes from unions and I expect it is the same to some degree nationally. 

Even though non-government unions have very low voting numbers in Kentucky - mostly because they ran out many good companies - they still command big dollars from the employees forced to pay dues to keep their job and their union bosses aren't timid about paying for attack ads against anyone who threatens them.   Combine this with the same intellect as the bosses of teachers’ unions who have done little more than escalate themselves into fear mongers for our active teachers and especially the retired ones. 

It’s amazing to me that the some of the same people who encouraged us as children, taught us to think and read for ourselves, have chosen to allow self-serving union bosses to do it for them.   How can anyone not love teachers? 

I believe good things can happen in Kentucky and I feel Governor Matt Bevin is the man to get it done.   He has already shown he is committed to teachers although their leadership did everything they could to defeat him.  This is what good men do and this is why I stand with him.

I’ve stood alongside my newspaper counterparts at Republican fundraisers and events just as others have on the Democratic side.  But you won't see me tweeting or sharing politically charged spin for the candidates of my choice; I'll leave that up to the same ones who have lost not only their paid readership but their unbiased ability to cover news.  I take my newspaper hat off when I attend such gatherings.  I go because I am a business owner, an individual, who knows in his heart that if Kentucky is to grow we must have business friendly policy. 

For decades, Kentucky has been stagnant about creating a welcoming environment for business.  While the party in the control for around 90 years blocked such legislation from even being allowed a debate and a vote, the Republicans didn’t push much.  I’ve heard a former GOP leader at fundraisers right here at home comment, "Why even bring it up when we know it won't pass and it only rallies our enemies?"  And by the way, that’s a direct quote.

Personally, I disagree with a majority party not allowing a debate or a vote just as much as I am outraged by political candidates who campaign on issues and then when in office, refuse to fight for those very issues.

Republicans must act as Republicans and enact ”right to work” legislation, do away with all "Prevailing Wage" requirements, pass "Public Charter School" legislation and pass a fair and balanced "Legal Reform” that will stop driving our insurance costs higher than all states without it. 

It is a new day for Kentucky and 2017 could be the greatest year in decades for industry leaders, business owners, and all working class families.   It could be the first year in my professional lifetime that Kentucky Republicans have an opportunity to lead as they promised to do when they initially ran for office and I for one will be watching closely.

Jeff Jobe is founder and CEO of Jobe Publishing, Inc. His commentary reflects his personal views and does not reflect the views of personal or professional associations and affiliations.  Reach him at  Read his previously published commentary at


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