Who Loses if Matt Bevin Wins on Nov. 5th?

Matthew Kaufmann
2020 Kentucky High School
Teacher of the Year

Four years ago, 16% of Kentuckians cast their vote for Matt Bevin, 13% voted for the Democratic nominee, and 1% voted for an independent candidate.    However, 70% of registered voters in Kentucky (2,228,155 people) did not vote.

70% of registered Kentucky voters did not vote for Bevin.  

16% of voters elected a man who is taking healthcare away from our most vulnerable and young populations. A man who has a well-documented history of trying to gut protections for pre-existing conditions. A man who threw Kentuckians’ health coverage into chaos by cutting dental and vision coverage for nearly 500,000 Kentuckians without warning.

16% of voters elected a man who has scapegoated public education to make way for for-profit charter schools as he’s labeled teachers as “selfish,” “ignorant” “thugs” that are “snowflakes” and need to be “knocked out and dragged to shore.” A man who lies about fixing state pensions that drastically impact teachers, police officers, and fire fighters.

16% of voters elected a man who seems to hate us and use his position of power for his own profit and those of his out of state CEO-buddies.  They elected a man who cuts taxes for the richest Kentuckians while raising sales and gas taxes that will hurt the pockets of all of us.   And we know, if this man is elected again, he will continue to lie to us like he did at the gubernatorial debate at Bellarmine on 10/26/19.

Kentucky deserves better than a man who lies to all of our faces, locks us out of our own capital building, and blames teachers for tragedies that happen outside of our classroom.

For the sake of our health, our public education system, and the future of Kentucky- we need the 70% of voters who were missing in action in 2015 to show up on Nov. 5th.  We need engaged voters to reach out to all of their circles across the state and take people to the polls.  The less the turnout, the greater odds Bevin will continue to occupy and weaponize the governor’s seat against teachers, schools, police officers, firefighters, and taxpayers. 

If we don’t mobilize, his out of state money will buy him the election.

Thomas Olges, a high school teacher in Louisville, Kentucky is concerned, “The Commonwealth currently has the second least popular governor in the country, and we’re in serious danger of seeing him re-elected.  Surely there can be no clearer indicator- and indictment – of modern day voter apathy.”

Literally, millions of Kentuckians have been hurt by Bevin.  A few testimonials from Kentuckians below, give us a window into what we can expect from a Bevin administration that is not worried about reelection in 2023.  These voices give us a window into why it is so important to vote for a candidate who recognizes how we need accessible healthcare, appropriately funded public schools, and is a leader who brings us together and doesn’t divide us against each other.

Diane Burgin, a Kentucky grandmother, shares, “Bevin caused me to not be able to afford to follow up with my oncologist this year.  I’m still paying off last year because he got rid of my Kentucky medical plan.” 

Cherie Carter Carr, a grandmother and elementary school teacher in Greenup, Kentucky confesses, “Matt Bevin makes me worry about my older years.  Due to his attack on teachers and pensions. A vote for Bevin is like spitting in the face of every teacher you’ve ever had. A vote for him is a vote for higher taxes, lower pay, poor health care for seniors, and less safety nets for workers! ”  

Kim Ison Carden explains, “Bevin caused me a great deal of stress regarding health insurance.  As a retired teacher who is under 65, Bevin proposed nearly tripling my insurance premium. As a widow on a pension, I could not afford it.  As a cancer survivor, I can’t risk losing coverage.”

Larry Wilson shares, “Bevin caused me many night of anguish worrying where my family’s financial future will stand.  My wife and I are both teachers; thus, the state does not allow us to draw social security even though we both worked in the private sector most of our years- including while teaching.”

Bailey Reed, a 2012 graduate of Oldham County High School, explains, “Bevin caused me to lose essential healthcare. As a current student working on my doctorate in veterinary medicine, I’m not allowed to concurrently have a full-time job that would otherwise provide me health insurance. On a student loan budget, I have to account for every dollar spent; our budget doesn’t accommodate for out of pocket insurance policies. I am not a fortunate person whose parents are able to carry me on their insurance. Because of this, the only health insurance I’m able to have is Kentucky Humana CareSource (a Medicaid program in Kentucky). Matt Bevin cutting Medicaid is not him cutting luxury healthcare, nor him cutting Medicaid for people who are undeserving or don’t need it; Matt Bevin cutting Medicaid is him stripping crucial healthcare for doctors in the making, a classmate you grew up with, and everyday people around you who otherwise have nothing else.”

Cortnee Gray, a U of L student, admits, “Bevin causes me to question a career path I’ve been passionate about since a young age. Teaching is something I’ve always wanted to do. But under leadership like Bevin, I have to wonder if that career choice will help me to survive and take care of my loved ones. A vote for Bevin is a vote against education. Kentucky needs a governor who will put education as one of its top priorities because with a solid education comes a solid foundation for the future of our state.”

Julia Elizabeth, a Kentuckian, shares, “Bevin caused my mother, an ‘ignorant’ JCPS teacher, to resort to using a GoFundMe to pay her cancer expenses, since he doesn’t believe healthcare is a human right. Kentuckians need a governor that cares for real Kentuckians, not just dollar signs.”

Career educators, Mariann Lawrence and Angie Davis Fox admit they’ve both “considered changing careers after almost 20 years in teaching” because of the hostile work environment Bevin is creating in public education.

An instructional coach in JCPS, Renee Butler Shumate, shares, “Bevin has caused me to question who will teach our future children because his actions are deterring people from entering the profession.”

Laura Mitchell Parker, a graduate of Moorehead State University and Oldham County teacher, call us all to action, “If Kentuckians don’t do more than vote, then we will have four more years of Bevin.”

Gabriel Savage, a graduate of Moore High School and student at UK, is adamant, “A vote for Bevin is a vote for keeping Kentucky behind. A quality education is the foundation for any adaptive and growing society. Kentucky needs a governor who’s willing to fight for the people, WITH the people. Not carrying out his personal agenda.”

Laura Hartke, a graduate of NKU and current elementary school teacher, shares, “Bevin is a threat to the working class people of Kentucky. He’s proven, without a doubt, that he despises teachers, unions, working class families, miners, police officers, firefighters, higher education, people who can’t afford health insurance, and basically anyone who’s not in his inner circle. A conservative is (or should be) someone who believes in being fiscally responsible and treating others as Jesus would, but Bevin is neither of these things. He is divisive and a bully. Beshear is a champion of the rights of all Kentuckians. He’s a unifier, a servant leader, a true public servant.”

Erin Morris, a 2009 graduate of UK and mother, knows, “Beshear is committed to advancing state-level legislation in the best interest of the Commonwealth. Bevin is simply a pawn in the national political mess and has no sense of responsibility for the welfare of Kentuckians.”

Don Bacon, a teacher at Iroquois High School, says, “Kentucky needs a governor who understands the issues facing working people and helps bring revenue to the state to serve the public.”

Lynne Ward, an environmentalist and social worker, sees, “A conservative is supposed to be fiscally responsible, but Bevin uses our resources and won’t say what he used them for. Beshear is a vote for education, compassion, and science based decisions.”

Kathleen Moore Ronay, a retired instructional leader for the schools of Kentucky, shares, “I am voting for Andy Beshear because I know he will restore the Department of Education to a respected group of highly skilled educators dedicated to providing outstanding public education for all Kentucky’s children.”

Benjamin Bush, a father and veteran teacher in JCPS, explains, “This election is about the kind of state I want my children to grow up in. It’s a chance to reject the distrustful bitterness of Bevin that seeks to reward his friends and punish his enemies, strip thousands of their healthcare, deny potential new streams of revenue, and generally seek to divide the people of Kentucky whenever possible. We can instead choose a leader in Beshear who will make a sincere effort to listen to and work with all regardless of affiliation. (He will have no choice in such a red state). My children deserve a commonwealth where healthcare, education, and human decency are available for all. I choose Beshear because he provides the only possibility in this election of a hopeful future for our state, of restoring public education and healthcare, of providing new revenue from gaming, and of the restoration of human decency and empathy that Bevin so sorely lacks.”

Jessica Elfers, a Head Start Teacher in Kentucky, has a message for the current governor. “Mr. Bevin, I believe that my wonderful and beautiful state needs a leader who actually gives a damn about ALL of its people. Not just our private school families but our lower class families and younger people. As a preschool teacher who works with the people who struggle the most, it is hard to watch as my Governor takes away pieces of their healthcare, as well as the healthcare and pensions of the people who help them the most. There is a shortage of state workers and teachers because instead of fixing a problem that you came into, you tried to actually make it worse. I hope that this next election gives our state someone who actually cares about its people from top to bottom.”

We need more than a 30% turnout of registered voters to win this election.

Here is where you can sign up to help get us closer to 100% of Kentucky voters voting in this election.

We must work for our Democracy for it to work for us…

Jason Starr Nelson (a graduate of Bellarmine University, journalist, and JCPS teacher) says, “It’s simple. Vote. The higher the turnout, the more it will favor Beshear. Don’t stand on the sidelines hoping it will all work out in the end.”

Vote, but do more than vote!  Please, click this link!

Jeanie Smith, a graduate of WKU and middle school educator in Bowling Green, warns us, “Bevin is hurting you personally. 4 more years means we will all be worse off than we are now, especially our kids.”

Click the link.  Our Democracy depends on you being involved.

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