Adkins launches governor campaign with pitch to rural voters

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – A veteran Democratic lawmaker in Kentucky has formally launched his campaign for governor.

Rocky Adkins made the announcement on Wednesday in Morehead, Kentucky. The 59-year-old has been in the state House of Representatives since 1987. He was majority floor leader in the state House until 2016, when Republicans won a majority for the first time in nearly 100 years.

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Adkins said he can win back rural voters who have been voting for Republicans in recent years.

Kentucky is one of three states that will elect a governor in 2019, along with Louisiana and Mississippi. Republican Gov. Matt Bevin announced in August he will seek a second term.

Adkins is the second high-profile Democrat to announce his candidacy. Attorney General Andy Beshear launched his campaign in July.