Legislative bill could prevent use of governor’s name or that he lives in the Governor’s Mansion

Rep. John Blanton, R-Salyersville, has refiled legislation for the 2021 session that could go as far as the name of the current governor, or that he lives in the Governor’s Mansion, from being published.

Perhaps future governors wouldn’t be so affected but the current governor would be because he is a former attorney general.

Think that’s an exaggeration? Check out the definition of “Prosecutor” in the first section of the bill:

(b) “Prosecutor” means any current, former, or retired:

1. United States attorney or assistant United States attorney;

2. Commonwealth’s attorney or assistant Commonwealth’s attorney;

3. County attorney or assistant county attorney;

4. Attorney General or deputy or assistant attorney general; or

One could argue that the Legislative Research Commission’s website is not in compliance with the legislation because it posts the full name, picture and hometown of the sponsor. As his bio notes on the LRC website, he was a major with the Kentucky State Police.

You see, in another section of the bill, it states:

(3) Any personally identifiable information currently published on the Internet or any other medium under the control of a public agency shall be redacted within 6 seventy-two (72) hours of the effective date of this Act.

The Legislative Research Commission is a public agency. Likewise the Registry of Election Finance keeps records of all candidates for public office and that information contains full names and addresses of individual who have filed for office.

In a Courier-Journal story published Thursday, with Joe Sonka as the reporter, Blanton pointed a comment toward KPA:

“Tell them to not get too excited… it’s a work in progress,” Blanton said.

Here’s a link to Joe Sonka’s story from Thursday:

https://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/politics/ky-general-assembly/2020/12/17/kentucky-legislature-attorneys-say-bill-would-violate-first-amendment/3907157001/

See for yourself. If you think it’s a stretch of the imagination that legislation could actually state this, check out BR985 (BR stands for Bill Request. It will be given a House Bill number when the session convenes Tuesday, January 5).

BR985

And here is KPA’s statement for publication if you wish to use it:

KPA Statement of Opposition – RS BR 985(962543.2)

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