Andy Beshear Kentucky Governor Acceptance Speech Transcript
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[00:00:04.03]
Thank you. Kentucky. Let me first start by thanking my running mate, Jacqueline Colette. You are an incredible friend and amazing running mate. And I know you're going to be a phenomenal lieutenant governor.

[00:00:43.08]
Tonight, voters in Kentucky sent a message loud and clear for everyone to hear.

[00:00:55.03]
It's a message that says our elections don't have to be about right versus left. They are still about right versus wrong. That our values and how we treat each other is still more important than our party that once unites us as Kentuckians is still stronger than any national divisions. And tonight, I think we showed this country that in Kentucky we can disagree with each other while still respecting one another. In this commonwealth, a commonwealth that I love. We believe in lifting each other up instead of tearing each other down.

[00:02:06.01]
And here in Kentucky, we can still fight from the very top levels of government for every family, including the lost, the lonely and the left behind. I haven't had an opportunity yet to speak to Governor BEVAN, but my expectation is that he will honor. He will honor the election that was held tonight. Then he will help us make this transition. And I'll tell you what, we will be ready for that first day in office. And I look forward to.

[00:02:53.06]
Let me say that while this was a very hard fought election, I know elections are difficult on families. So let's all wish this governor and his family the very best we can do that.

[00:03:14.04]
I stand here tonight grateful, grateful to the Commonwealth of Kentucky and its voters, grateful, but I've got to start by thanking the people in my life who truly drive me, my family for their love and inspiration.

[00:03:37.07]
I want to thank my wife, Brittany. Your next first lady. And let me tell you, I know another first lady pretty well, and I believe Britney is going to be one of the best that we have ever had. And I have to thank my two kids. Well, and Lyla. You all are my reason for living. Everything I do, I think about you. I love you all so much. I need to thank a couple of parents who raised me.

[00:04:57.01]
I want to thank my mom and dad, Jane and Steve Besheer, for their love and support, their service, their amazing service they gave to this Commonwealth. Tonight, I want to say thank you to our union families that helped make this election. I want to thank the F.O.B., the Fraternal Order of Police. I want to thank our educators. You two are educators. Your courage to stand up and fight against all the bullying and name calling helped galvanize our entire state.

[00:06:23.09]
I'll never forget the first couple years that I was in office as your attorney general were a little bit hard. There were days that I came to work and I felt like that last soldier room. But I put on that armor and I stepped up to the frontline each and every day until 12000 reinforcements came to the Capitol. To our educators, I know so many of you worked hard on this campaign and I appreciate every single hour that each of you.

[00:07:03.04]
And then all of our nearly 3000 volunteers spent knocking on doors. And while I believe the jaclyn's said, let me be very clear to our educators, this is your victory.

[00:07:39.06]
From now on, the doors of your state capitol will always be open. We will treat each other with dignity and respect and we will honor our commitments to our public servants. We will make sure that promises made are promises kept and we will work day and night to do as much good as we can. However we can.

[00:08:19.08]
So while I want everybody to have a lot of fun tonight. After tonight, this election is over. After tonight, we move forward with every other Kentucky citizen as Team Kentucky. Team Kentucky is a team whose mission is rooted in our shared values of faith, hard work and a belief in a bigger, brighter tomorrow. These Kentucky values transcend any and all party lines. I'm committed. Committed to be a governor for everyone. That means rural and urban Kentucky.

[00:09:15.03]
Eastern, western, northern and central Kentucky. It means being a governor for every Democrat, every Republican and every Independent, every single Kentuckian. To those watching. If I did not earn your vote today, rest assured I will work hard to earn your trust. And even more importantly, I will always strive to do the right thing. But. Because I didn't run for this officer office just to be governor. I ran for this office because I want to govern well.

[00:10:07.04]
As your next governor, I will listen more than I talk. I will work with anyone who has a good idea that we can deliver for Kentuckians with all the partisan bickering and nastiness that we're seeing in politics. We have an opportunity to do better right here in Kentucky. We're facing big challenges, but I know that we are up to them. I ran on kitchen table issues and I will govern focus on those same challenges of good jobs, health care for every Kentuckian, protecting and funding our pensions and always supporting public education.

[00:11:07.01]
I believe that we have a brighter tomorrow to make Kentucky the agritech leader of this country. We're going to build our advanced manufacturing sector and invest in workforce training. That's how we're going to create good jobs all over Kentucky in every single community. In my first week in office, I'm going to rescind this governor's Medicaid waiver. We're going to give this state a brand new board of education. And we are going to restore the voting rights of more than one hundred and forty thousand citizens.

[00:12:18.00]
Every day we're going to work to expand access to health care and we are going to fight to lower the cost of prescription drugs. Health care is a basic human right. And my administration will treat it as such. Under our administration, a pension is a promise. There will be no war going after the pensions of our teachers, social workers and first responders. They have earned that retirement. And public education will be the central priority of my administration.

[00:13:05.00]
We are going to invest in our public schools because we believe in the next generation of Kentuckians. Our schools are the foundation of our communities. Every kid has the right to get a world class education that opens up every door that they can walk through. And we can only provide those opportunities by ensuring that we fulfill our commitment to our teachers that are going to help lead us to that next great Kentucky. One of those teachers is Laura, who is here tonight.

[00:13:54.04]
Laura has committed her career to helping kids at risk of falling behind. She's lost several close family members to the opioid epidemic, including her mom and her brother. Her child has a preexisting condition. Laura gets up every day at 4:30 a.m. and goes to teach a full day. Yet on many weeknights and after the school, day is over. And on most weekends, she drives an Uber to make ends meet. This victory is her, Laura. And it is a victory for the thousands of Kentuckians like her folks that work so hard every single day that give back to their communities and help their neighbors.

[00:14:44.06]
I'm gonna be a governor that is on their side.

[00:14:55.07]
So tonight, the election is over, but next month we start a brand new chapter here in Kentucky, and that is a chapter where every family, every individual and every single Kentuckian truly counts.

[00:15:14.03]
Thank you all so much.

[00:15:23.02]
droughty should do it. You need to shut down the loud out bag and drive to make you. All right, we've been listening to Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andy Besheer in a race that at this hour is too close to call. Let's bring in our Caitlin Jimmy Burns on the phone. She's a CBS and political reporter. Caitlin, so we are looking at the numbers there, a razor thin margin between these two candidates, Andy BOSHIER and Governor Matt Bevin. What stood out to you or what stands out to you at this point in the night?

[00:16:05.01]
That's right. The reason we're looking at this race was because this is a state that Trump won by about 30 points. It's a deep conservative state. And the idea that there was a really tight governor's race prompting Trump to actually have to go to Kentucky to campaign for the incumbent Republican, raised all sorts of questions about, you know, what the national environment was and whether we would see a reaction on the ground to the current president, to the impeachment inquiry and to two other issues.

[00:16:35.07]
I will say, though, that we have to kind of look at a variety of different factors here. First, the attorney general elected statewide tonight was a Republican and Republicans won all of the other seats that were up tonight as well. So it's not we're not seeing a statewide reaction. This this governor's race is still very close. And you also heard during Bashir's acceptance speech, we should note that Bevin has not conceded and may be calling for a recount, that he talked about a lot of local issues.

[00:17:10.03]
And there have been a couple of things going on in Kentucky that have been making the incumbent Governor Bevin really unpopular. He's one of the most unpopular governors in the country. He was sparring with teachers over pension plans. He was wanting to cut the Medicaid expansion in the state, which would have a huge impact on uninsured Americans in Kentucky. And so you heard the there talking about those issues and really trying to make this about local economic kitchen table issues and not kind of the broader politics that we've been seeing across the country.

[00:17:51.07]
So that's something important to point out. And we're still kind of waiting for the final results here. But I think Democrats will say that this is an opportunity for voters to when they show up to overturn Republicans, especially if they have good turnout in suburban areas, areas that they're trying to convert the Republicans back to over back to the party, to the Democratic Party. And I think Republicans will look at this as a deeply unpopular governor, will try to say that this doesn't have an impact on Trump and that this was about other things and not necessarily a national mood.

Andy Beshear Kentucky Governor Acceptance Speech Transcript
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