By Jack Brammer
FRANKFORT –John-Mark Hack, an independent candidate in the June 25 House special election for Central Kentucky’s 56th House District, challenged his opponents Monday to four public debates in June.
Hack, a former farm official in Gov. Paul Patton’s administration, is facing Republican Lyen Crews and Democrat James L. Kay II in the election to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Democrat Carl Rollins to accept a higher education post.
All three candidates are from Woodford County. The district also includes parts of Fayette and Franklin counties.
Hack said in a release that he is proposing a series of four public debates to be sponsored by non-partisan organizations in June and asking each campaign to wage a positive campaign with no negative attacks.
The debates would be held in each county of the district. A final debate would be sponsored by CN2’s Pure Politics that Hack said “could be re-aired on their cable channel and available on their website so every voter may have an opportunity to compare the respective candidates and make an informed choice on Election Day.”
The cable show is aired in Fayette County but not in Woodford and Franklin counties.
Hack said he is flexible on the dates, time and ground rules for the debates.
“I will work with the sponsoring organization and my opponents to develop a schedule of dates, times and places, as well as ground rules to govern the debates that are agreeable to everyone,” he said.
Crews, who is leaving as vice president of business and financial affairs at Midway College to take a job at eCampus.com in Lexington, said in an email, “Each candidate in this race is going to run their own campaign and focus on what they think is most important.
“House Democrat leaders have promoted policies that have kept our state from moving forward, and I fully intend for this election to be a discussion of those policies and issues. I am excited for the opportunity to discuss my ideas for making Kentucky a better place to live and work.”
Kay, an attorney and former advisor to House Democratic leaders, did not immediately return a phone call and email for comment.
Filed Under: Elections