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David Williams will remain Kentucky Senate President in 2012

Senate President David Williams, R-Burkesville

By Jack Brammer
jbrammer@herald-leader.com

FRANKFORT — Senate President David Williams, who lost a bid for governor this year, will keep his leadership position in the legislature.

Williams, a Burkesville Republican who has headed the Senate since 2000, said after a retreat Thursday for Senate Republicans that there will be no leadership changes in the Senate.

He said no Republican leader faced a challenge.

There was speculation that there might be a challenge to Williams’ leadership, given Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear’s resounding victory over Williams in the Nov. 8 gubernatorial election.

Some felt that Williams could be a liability for Republican candidates in 2012 elections, when half of the Senate’s 38 seats will be up for grabs.

Senate Majority Caucus Chairman Dan Seum, R-Louisville, said the caucus did discuss how the Senate could run more efficiently. He mentioned that there will be an effort for leaders to be more timely.

Several members have complained that Williams often is late gaveling the Senate into session.

Williams’ current term as president runs through 2012.

“We had a caucus meeting for two days, and I’m going to be president for the rest of my term,” Williams said.

Asked what will happen in 2013, Williams said “I am not so presumptuous to think that we will have the majority or that I would be re-elected.”

Williams said the group “talked about a lot of issues.”

On Beshear’s call earlier this week for a constitutional amendment to expand gambling, Williams said the governor should fully vet his plan with the public before presenting it to the legislature.

Williams said the goal of the Senate is to perform its work on redrawing Congressional and legislative district boundaries in the first week of the 2012 General Assembly that begins Jan. 3.

Republicans outnumber Democrats in the Senate 22 to 15, with one independent member who caucuses with Republicans.

Meanwhile, House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, has asked all 100 members of the Democratic-controlled House to meet next Tuesday and Wednesday in the House chamber for informational briefings on the state budget and Medicaid.

There are 58 Democrats and 42 Republicans in the House.

Filed Under: David WilliamsKY General AssemblyRepublican Party

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