PADUCAH — When Kentucky lawmakers return to Frankfort on April 13-14, they could override a handful of vetoes Governor Andy Beshear issued last week.
One of the vetoed measures is Senate Bill 216, which passed with bipartisan support in the General Assembly. Beshear said he vetoed it because it reduced the transparency of the election. Specifically, he said candidates running for office should only file annual campaign finance returns in years they are not running for office. The governor argued that without quarterly reports, candidates will be able to write bills and serve on interim legislative committees while receiving donations in secret.
In Paducah on Monday, Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams said he was disappointed Beshear vetoed the measure.
“This is a bill that all Democratic senators voted for, as well as all but one Republican senator, so it doesn’t get any more bipartisan than this. I’m very frustrated that the governor chose to veto to this, I think, before – textual grounds. I respect the governor. I get on very well with him. He is a good person, but it was an error of judgment on his part, and I hope that ‘he overruled,’ Adams said.
Adams said Senate Bill 216 improves a number of things surrounding elections that Kentuckyans support.
“This bill would double the number of audits we do for each election. It would put all voting machines under video surveillance when not in use during voting times. The most important is that it advances our transition date for when we move to paper ballots away from electronic machines. Voters have much more confidence in paper ballots than they do in the electronics,” Adams said.
All indications from the Republican-controlled Senate and House indicate lawmakers will override the veto.
He added that he was proud of the work done by lawmakers to improve the electoral system.
“I can assure you this: there has never been greater integrity in our electoral system than today, not even when I ran three years ago. We have made very good improvements in all parts. are real bills to improve the process. That’s why Democrats and Republicans came together to push them through,” Adams said.
Kentucky’s primary election is Tuesday, May 17. Find out where your voting center is by click here.