Democrat McGarvey wins Louisville-area congressional seat

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Morgan McGarvey won a prized congressional district in and around Kentucky’s largest city on Tuesday, keeping the Louisville-area 3rd District as the lone Democrat-held U.S. House seat in the Bluegrass State.

McGarvey, the minority leader of Democrats in the Kentucky Senate, beat back a challenge by Republican businessman Stuart Ray in the state’s most competitive congressional race in deeply red Kentucky.

McGarvey was endorsed by outgoing Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth, who has held the Louisville district for eight terms since 2007 and left the seat open with his announced retirement.

The challenger Ray is a businessman and former state Fish and Wildlife commissioner who had pledged more economic development for Louisville and was critical on the campaign trail of Democrats’ efforts to curb inflation.

The 3rd District remained intact under the GOP’s new redistricting plan and is far more diverse than other parts of Kentucky. It covers most of Kentucky’s Jefferson County, where white residents make up nearly two-thirds of the district’s population and Black residents account for about 20%, according to U.S. Census figures.

Ray narrowly won the GOP primary to face McGarvey and sought to capitalize on a national political climate favoring Republicans.

Democratic President Joe Biden won Louisville with about 59% of the vote in the 2020 presidential race.

McGarvey, a lawyer, campaigned in support of universal government healthcare, legalizing marijuana and expanding renewable energy to combat climate change. He also was critical of Ray’s support of an abortion ban in Kentucky and said the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol was a “terrorist insurrection.”

Ray said he opposes gun control laws, supports charter schools and thought the border wall begun by former President Donald Trump should be completed.

Three Republican incumbents easily won reelection to Congress from Kentucky on Tuesday, including the longest-serving member of the U.S. House.

Andy Barr, James Comer and Harold “Hal” Rogers, who was elected to a 22nd consecutive term, won their districts. Rogers was first elected to Congress in 1980. Two more congressional Republicans, Brett Guthrie and Thomas Massie, were expected to cruise to re-election in the deep-red state.


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Dylan Lovan, The Associated Press