My First Press Conference

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Dec 31, 2015 Comments Off on My First Press Conference

Gaskins announces decision to run
By Rebecca Walter, New Era Staff Writer Dec 1, 2015Announcement
Gaskins announces decision to run
Rebecca Walter | Kentucky New Era
Local Democrat Sam Gaskins announced his run for 1st Congressional District on Tuesday on the steps of the Pennyroyal Arts Council.
The battle for the 1st Congressional District keeps growing, as local Democrat Sam Gaskins officially announced Tuesday his run to replace U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield.

In front of about 15 people, which included former state senator Joey Pendleton and Christian County Democratic Executive Committee Chairman Jeff Taylor, Gaskins outlined his platform on the steps of the Pennyroyal Arts Council on East Ninth Street.

Gaskins intentionally chose to make his announcement at the arts council because, he said, Hopkinsville was built around the location. He said the day, Dec. 1, was significant, too, because it is the anniversary of when Andrew Jackson was defeated by one vote in the House of Representatives.

“He has been the only president to stick up for working men and women,” Gaskins said. “People don’t like him because of his politics, and people are going to hate me because of mine, but it’s not my job to force my politics on anyone. It will be my job to speak for 519,000 Kentuckians.”

Gaskins, 38, is a military veteran and a native of Crofton. He is currently medically retired. He said one of his top priorities if elected will be fighting the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. He said he, his family and his friends have all had their battles with the VA.

“We’ve let career politicians run our lives for too long,” Gaskins said. “It’s time to let actual people take over the House. The U.S. House of Representatives is our house. It’s not a banker’s house. It’s not an insurance salesman’s house. It’s not an attorney’s house. It is the people of the United States’ house.”

Gaskins isn’t the first local candidate to announce his bid for Congress. Michael Pape, former district director to Whitfield, said in September he was vying for the retiring Republican’s seat.

Republican and outgoing Agriculture Commissioner James Comer is also in the running. The pool of Democrats is smaller, especially since state Rep. John Tilley recently announced he will not run. State Sen. Dorsey Ridley is one of the main Democratic names being thrown around.

“In November 2016, whether I had a primary or not, I’m still going to stand up and voice my opinion the way it needs to be voiced, whether I’m selected or not.”

The filing deadline for candidates is Jan. 26.

Reach Rebecca Walter at 270-887-3241 or