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By Scott Wartman
The Kentucky Enquirer
Backed by the tea party, Thomas Massie won the Republican Primary on Tuesday for Kentucky’s Fourth Congressional District.
Massie, Lewis County’s judge-executive, beat six other Republicans for the nomination to replace U.S. Rep. Geoff Davis, who is not seeking re-election. In the general election he will face Democrat Bill Adkins, of Williamstown, who beat one other candidate in his party’s primary.
Whoever wins the general election will be the first congressman for the Fourth District not from Boone, Kenton or Campbell counties since Oldham County Republican Gene Snyder left office in 1987.
With 19 out of 20 counties reporting, Massie won the Fourth District with 19,684 votes, garnering about 45 percent of the vote compared to Alecia Webb-Edgington, who received 29 percent, and Boone County Judge-executive Gary Moore, who received 15 percent of the vote. Massie beat Moore in Moore’s home county, 45 percent to 29 percent. Massie also won Campbell County but lost Kenton County to Webb-Edgington.
“Tonight would not be possible without the tireless dedication of the tea parties in Northern Kentucky,” Massie said in his victory speech. “We’ve also got another secret weapon – the liberty movement is alive and well. Just the good grassroots rank and file Republicans who are conservatives and mean it.”
Many involved with the tea party movement saw Massie’s victory as an exclamation point to the message of change sent in 2010 when U.S. Sen. Rand Paul won. Supporters at the Massie victory party in the Hilton in Florence shouted “Massie-cre!” as their battle cry, echoing the “Randslide!” chants for Paul two years earlier.
Massie pledged to take on the establishment in Congress.
In the November election, Massie will face Adkins who defeated his opponent Greg Frank, 69 percent to 31 percent in the Fourth District.
Adkins, 56, an attorney, formerly served as chairman of the Grant County Democratic Party. He raised $13,000 in the primary and has never held public office before. Despite this, Adkins thinks he has a chance in the general election.
Adkins said he wants to address the economy and infrastructure. “The no. 1 issue is the economy and making this area work as an economic engine,” Adkins said. “We’ve got to put people back to work.”