LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Days after officially filing to run for the U.S. Senate, former State Representative Charles Booker appeared in Lexington to share his campaign message with Kentuckians on Saturday.
“It’s time for us to be the priority,” Booker told a crowd. “The Kentucky New Deal is our declaration that we deserve the greatest investment in our infrastructure in our Commonwealth history.”
The Louisville Democrat officially filed his candidate paperwork on Wednesday to run against Republican U.S. Senator Rand Paul in 2022.
Paul is running for his third term in Washington.
Booker described his vision for the Commonwealth if he wins to a crowd on Saturday.
“I want more Kentuckians having money in their pockets. I want everyone to have great, quality health care. I want everyone to be safe in their homes and have true community safety all across Kentucky. I want us to be healthy,” he said. “We need to break down barriers to democracy. We have to come together all across Kentucky from the hood to the holler. We have to stand together.”
The election will be an uphill battle for Booker. For years, Kentucky has leaned red in most elections and polls currently favor Paul in the Senate race.
Paul has previously said he doesn’t think Booker’s progressive ideas align with what Kentuckians want, but Booker said he believes his platform hits the mark on what Kentuckians need to thrive.
“It’s about prioritizing, ending poverty and addressing the real challenges we face. We need this type of leadership and it’s only going to happen with people standing up for the Kentucky New Deal,” Booker said.
Booker will first need to win his party’s nomination in the 2022 primary election, which takes place on May 17.
The only other Democrat to announce a candidacy is Ruth Gao from Louisville. She has not officially filed, according to the Secretary of State's website.
While the incumbent senator, Rand Paul, has announced he is running for re-election, he has not officially filed at this time according to the Secretary of State's website.