John W. Pennington | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

John W. Pennington

District/Office: 
Political party: 
Democrat
Incumbent: 
No
Question 1: 

What’s your vision for Kentucky? How will the lives of Kentuckians be improved as a result of your time in office? What legislative committees will you request to serve on once elected? 

I want to put more emphasis on small business and tourism to help boost Ky's failing economy. Lower taxes on working class citizens and make corporations pay their fair share of taxes and quit giving corps. all the bailouts . Affordable healthcare is a top priority and education is a must. I want to put an end to the right to work policy that has been imposed on Ky for far to long and work on getting a better living wage for our working class citizens. If elected I will strive to be on as many committees that I feel should be top priorities for Ky. #1 Economic and Workplace Dev. #2 Small business and info. #3 Education #4 Agriculture #5Tourism #6 Natural Resource

Question 2: 

Even after Governor Beshear's December 2019 executive order that restored voting rights to 152,000 Kentuckians with felonies in their past, over 170,000 Kentuckians are still ineligible to vote. Do you support a constitutional amendment to automatically restore voting rights to all Kentuckians with felonies in their past once they've served their time, probation, and parole? Why or why not?

I strongly agree. I feel that if someone's debt to society has been paid they should have every right restored and treated as fairly as any other citizen.

Question 3: 

During the 2020 primary, Kentuckians voted in record numbers as a result of mail-in absentee voting and early voting. But we can improve on what we learned in the primary and make voting more accessible for all Kentuckians. What is your view on modernizing state election laws? Specifically, do you support allowing early voting, mail-in ballots, same-day voter registration, extended hours at polling locations, offering ballots in multiple languages, and other election reforms? Would you uphold or work to repeal Senate Bill 2, which makes it harder for voters who don't have particular kinds of photo ID to vote, knowing that many Kentuckians do not have – and face barriers to obtaining – those forms of ID?

I support mail in voting, early voting and same day voter registration. Extended hours would help working citizens who do not want to loose hours at work just to vote even when it is important to them. I think bilingual ballots are a must for our newly adopted citizens. I firmly believe that your Social sec. card or any gov. issued ID should be acceptable.

Question 4: 

Even before COVID, Kentucky’s tax code did not raise enough revenue to meet the Commonwealth’s needs. We’ve reached dangerous levels of disinvestment in pensions, public education, infrastructure, and other essential programs. While there may be federal aid to buffer some of those impacts, we still need our own sustainable, long-term revenue solutions. What would you do to create a more equitable state tax structure – where everyone pays their fair share – that raises adequate revenue, fights poverty, and invests in Kentucky’s under-resourced communities and the services we all need?

We need to stop bailing out large corporations. We have got to stop giving them all the grants and start making them pay their fair share of taxes and put that towards the programs that will help the most impoverished communities. We have got to start giving more support to the working class citizens who are having to work 2 and 3 jobs per household to make ends meet.

Question 5: 

Many undocumented and mixed immigration status families here in Kentucky do not have access to government aid, stimulus payments, and other resources offered during this pandemic, while they’re simultaneously more likely to be essential workers and are at the highest risk for COVID-19 infection. What would you do to expand support and resources to Kentucky’s immigrant families, undocumented or otherwise, in the time of a global pandemic and beyond?

Out of pure human decency no one should be left out. Your immigration status shouldn't stop you from receiving medical help, food and shelter.

Question 6: 

Is acting to address the climate crisis a priority for you? What policies do you support to ensure that solutions – such as clean energy jobs and reducing high energy bills – benefit all Kentuckians, including low-income communities, communities of color, and those who are most impacted by the changing climate? And what policies would you support to ensure that all Kentuckians have clean air and water, no matter the color of our skin, income, or zip code?

Yes. We have a lot of damage to undo from our previous Pres. Adm. whom is undoing the hard work and restrictions that the EPA has set in place to ensure we have clean air and water etc. I want to reinstate and implement those restrictions to ensure safety for us all.

Question 7: 

Kentuckians from across the state are coming together to say Black Lives Matter and to demand that all Kentuckians can move through our communities without fearing for our lives or our loved ones. What is the role of the Kentucky legislature in opposing white supremacy, addressing racial inequality and supporting racial justice for Black people, Indigenous people, and all people of color in our state? Please identify at least two policy initiatives you would propose while in office to address racial and systemic inequalities.

Laws regarding law enforcement need to be revised. Any and all people should be treated with the utmost respect and the fairness they deserve. We need to be more selective and do tougher background checks during the hiring process of police men and woman. I would like to impose a bill to allow local citizens to volunteer to assist and assess any wrong doing and be able to report them without repercussions.

Question 8: 

Kentucky has the ninth highest incarceration rate in the nation, is second for incarcerating women, and has the second-highest rate of children separated from a parent due to incarceration. In addition, Black Kentuckians face disproportionate arrest, conviction, and incarceration, and a heightened risk of police brutality. And people in many parts of our state face racial profiling, intimidation and unjust detainment and detention by federal and local authorities due to immigration status or perceived status. Many Kentuckians are calling for various measures to stem the tide of racialized criminalization, police brutality, mass incarceration, and detention and deportation – from police reform, to increased community investment, to a complete defunding and abolition of the police and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). If elected, what will you do to make strides toward ending mass incarceration in Kentucky and reinvesting resources into the communities most impacted by this system?

We need to make better investments in our communities that would help boost the economy. There tend to less crimes when jobs are available. I want to build more programs to help keep children and unemployed people off the streets by putting volunteers to work in parks and rec. alongside a program that would help introduce them into the workplace. I know we have programs such as that but some work some do not and some do not have enough resources to keep going.

Question 9: 

Do you support a statewide Fairness law to protect LGBTQ people (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, queer) from discrimination in housing, employment, financial transactions, and public accommodations based on sexual orientation and gender identity? Do you support a statewide ban on the practice of LGBTQ conversion therapy, which would protect Kentucky youth from a harmful and medically discredited practice?

I firmly believe that each individual has the right to choose how they want to live their life. They have the right to live and work where they choose and just like any other person if they qualify for a loan etc. and have the ability pay it back there shouldn't be any problem, their money spends just like everyone else's.

Question 10: 

Nearly 400,000 low-income Kentuckians qualified for health care – including vision, dental and mental health – for the first time under the Affordable Care Act. But major challenges remain, and many are exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis. What would you do to make sure Kentuckians can get and stay healthy? What are your health-related legislative priorities? 

Answer 10: 

I feel that the Affordable Cares Act should be given as a choice alongside other insurance carriers and available to any working class citizen who chooses to have it. I want to work toward reforming Medicare/ Medicade and do away with copays.