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Junior members of KY House form ‘Commonwealth Caucus’ to address needs of ‘everyday Kentuckians’

A group of junior members of Kentucky’s House of Representatives, representing House districts from across the state, announced the formation of the bi-partisan Commonwealth Caucus.

Fed up with a broken political process that puts millionaires, billionaires and giant corporations ahead of everyone else, caucus members are committed to prioritizing the needs of everyday Kentuckians, their families, and local communities.

“As new legislators, we were crazy enough to believe that our job in Frankfort was to improve the lives of regular Kentuckians, their families, and communities. That’s why we ran for office in the first place,” said Representative Cherlynn Stevenson, HD 88 and Chair and founder of the Commonwealth Caucus.

“When we got here though, we found out pretty quickly that there are a lot of folks here who prioritize millionaires, billionaires and out-of-state corporations, at the expense of the people of Kentucky. We can not, and will not stand by and just let this continue to happen. We’re going to start doing something about it while we’re still crazy enough to think that our job is to represent all Kentuckians – Democrats, Republicans, and Independents – and put the common good of our Commonwealth first.”

Commonwealth Caucus members say it is critical to emphasize issues, not political parties or divisive, cynical political games to distract and divide Kentuckians instead of working to find ways we can work together to build a stronger, prosperous Kentucky that doesn’t leave anyone – or any region behind. 

“We’re making a commitment to Kentuckians, from every part of the state – urban, rural and suburban – to judge every single piece of legislation that comes through this building by asking one question: Does this legislation prioritize everyday Kentuckians, their families, and local communities or does it put millionaires, billionaires and giant multi-national corporations first?” said Representative Charles Booker, HD 43. “Then we’re going to ask other legislators and constituents to join us in asking that same question as many times as it takes until it becomes part of the culture of how we do things in Frankfort.”

Representatives Cherlynn Stevenson (HD-88), Charles Booker (HD-43), Chris Harris (HD-93), Angie Hatton (HD-94), Kathy Hinkle (HD-96), Maria Sorolis (HD-48), and Rob Wiederstein (HD-11) will collaborate with their colleagues in the House to amplify the voices and priorities of Kentuckians through their legislative work and by building a state-wide movement that encourages Kentuckians to come together around their shared values and engage in the political process. 

“For so long we’ve been told that people who live in cities don’t understand the struggles of rural people and that people in the counties don’t care about what happens in our cities, but we’re all Kentuckians and our big cities and tiny towns face a lot of the same challenges. We all want the same things for our families and communities. We’re going to start bringing people from across the state together to realize that we can all move forward together,” said Rep. Angie Hatton, HD 94, who represents a district in Letcher and Pike Counties.

Throughout the summer and fall, the Commonwealth Caucus will host a series of regional town hall events across Kentucky to hear from constituents – not consultants and talking heads – and talk about the issues and values we all hold. Currently, there are events scheduled in Louisville, Ludlow, Lexington, and Louisa. Events in the Southeastern and Western Kentucky are still yet to be scheduled. 

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