Kentuckians went to the polls yesterday for the 2022 primary elections to determine party nominees for the general election in November. Primary races on the ballot included the open 3rd Congressional seat, several of the Kentucky General Assembly’s Senate and House seats, Louisville mayor, and Louisville Metro Council seats. While most incumbents won their primaries yesterday evening, some succumbed to their opponents.
Greenberg, Dieruf to face off for Louisville Mayor
For the first time in 12 years, Louisvillians will elect a new mayor and party voters overwhelmingly selected their winners yesterday. Democratic businessman Craig Greenberg beat out the crowded Democratic primary with 35,000 votes compared to 18,000 from runner-up Shameka Parrish-Wright. Current Jeffersontown Mayor Bill Dieruf was the frontrunner for the Republican race and handily beat out the thinner field with 78% of the primary vote.
McGarvey wins Democratic primary for 3rd Congressional Seat
Kentucky Senate Minority Leader beat State Representative Attica Scott to become the Democratic candidate for the 3rd Congressional District seat, currently held by Congressman John Yarmuth. McGarvey announced his candidacy quickly after Congressman Yarmuth’s retirement announcement and had a significant fundraising advantage, with more than $1.5 million reported in his last filing compared with $230,000 for Scott.
With 99% percent of precincts reporting, Republican candidates Stuart Ray and Rhonda Palazzo are virtually tied with 9,703 and 9,645 votes respectively.
State Senate & House Races
After a slew of retirement announcements, several state seats were open and many of the incumbents with a primary race managed to fend off challenges, with a few notable exceptions. This primary season was marked by the strong emergence of so-called “liberty caucus” candidates. These candidates were especially strong in more urban areas, marking a notable change in the activist base in the Republican party with many primary elections focusing on very right-leaning issues.
- Republican Speaker of the House, David Osborne, easily won his primary against Bridgette Ehly for State House District 59 representing Oldham County.
- In what was considered one of the most competitive primary races, Republican Representative Samara Heavrin of Leitchfield held off a challenge from Jacob Clark for House District 18.
- Longtime Democratic Representative Tom Burch, who has served since in the House nearly continuously since 1972, fell to a challenge from Daniel Grossberg for District 30 in Jefferson County.
- Three Northern Kentucky House Republican chairs – Ed Massey of Hebron, Adam Koenig of Erlanger, and Sal Santoro of Union – fell to liberty caucus primary challengers.
Metro Council incumbents win primaries
All of the odd-numbered Metro Council District seats are up for re-election this year and seven of those races saw competitive primary races. Democratic incumbents Keisha Dorsey of Metro Council District 3 and Donna Purvis of Metro Council District 5 were successful in winning their primaries while several districts with open seats saw newcomers emerge as the party candidates:
- Metro Council District 1 primary winners are Democrat Tammy Hawkins and Republican Charlie Bell
- Metro Council District 9 saw Democrat Andrew Owen emerge from the crowded primary field. He will face off to Republican primary winner Alexandra Martindale in the November general election.
- Democrat Jennifer Chappell won the primary for Metro Council District 15 and the seat is essentially hers with no Republican challengers for the general election.
- Republican primary winner Kent Hall will take on Democratic incumbent Metro Councilmember Markus Winkler for the District 17 seat in the fall.
- In the District 21 race, Republican primary winner Stephen Datillo, Jr. will take on the sole Democratic candidate, Betsy Ruhe.
With an open seat for Mayor and many new Councilmembers taking office next year, there will be major changes in store for Louisville. GLI is hosting a Mayoral Candidate forum with Craig Greenberg and Bill Dieruf at the next Capitol Connection on June 14th to discuss their plans to grow the city of Louisville. GLI does not endorse or support individual candidates, however the forum will serve as a way to educate the business community on were the candidates stand on GLI priority issues and educate candidate on top business priorities. Register for GLI’s Capitol Connection presented by Norton Healthcare here.