The Public Square – The election landscape

Jason Hall

On Nov. 6 Kentuckians will cast votes for every seat in the state House of Representatives and several seats in the Senate. The candidates that prevail will begin their work as legislators in January for the 2019 term of the Kentucky General Assembly.

You have an important role to play in this process. Legislators will soon have to grapple with significant issues related to health care, education, tax policy and the criminal justice system.

Candidates for office need to hear from you now in order to start the conversation on issues that they will consider during the next legislative session and beyond. No matter who wins on Election Day, a large number of seats will be held by first-time candidates who may be new to the work of the Catholic Conference of Kentucky.

CCK represents the state’s four Roman Catholic dioceses in public policy matters. It does not endorse or oppose candidates and no endorsement or opposition should be inferred from the information provided here. Instead, the CCK takes positions on issues.

Its positions on legislative matters are the result of a rigorous process of reflection and consultation. The issues highlighted here are not intended to be an exhaustive list of every issue that Catholics should care about, but instead represent those legislative matters for which we have an opportunity to make an impact in the near future.

To help you to engage with candidates on issues that will be in play during the 2019 legislative session, review the list of issues and questions for candidates below:

Educational Choice:

CCK supports policies that would enable more families to choose the school that best fits their children’s needs, including non-public schools and faith-based options.

Question:

Do you support Scholarship Tax Credit legislation that encourages private charitable donations to programs that provide need-based tuition assistance to Kentucky families for K-12 non-public schools?

Respect for Life:

CCK supports legislation that supports mothers and protects their unborn children.

Questions:

Do you support legislation that protects women from facing discrimination due to pregnancy by requiring that reasonable accommodations be made in the workplace during the pregnancy and while nursing?

Would you support legislative efforts to eliminate or limit abortion in Kentucky?

Death Penalty:

CCK supports ending the use of capital punishment in Kentucky.

Questions:

Would you support legislation that would abolish the death penalty in favor of life without parole?

Do you support legislation that would eliminate the death penalty for defendants with a diagnosed severe mental illness at the time of their crime?

Criminal Justice Reform: CCK supports efforts to limit incarceration and to create a pathway for former inmates to rejoin their communities as productive members of society.

Question: Do you support legislation that reduces incarceration rates for non-violent offenses and provides a pathway for inmates to return to the workforce as productive members of society?

Jason Hall is the executive director of the Catholic Conference of Kentucky.

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