>3 expect to shake up Senate race by winning – U.S. Senate Election – Kentucky.com

>3 expect to shake up Senate race by winning – U.S. Senate Election – Kentucky.com

3 expect to shake up Senate race by winning
They lag in money, polls but not optimism
By Cheryl Truman – ctruman@herald-leader.com
They might barely register in the polls. They don’t get big campaign donations — except from themselves — and their TV time is mainly courtesy of YouTube.
They don’t care.
The three lesser-known Democratic candidates — James Buckmaster, Darlene Price and Maurice Sweeney — in the U.S. Senate primary all show boundless optimism.


James Buckmaster, left, Darlene Price and Maurice Sweeney
UPDATED U.S. Senate candidate expenses
More U.S. Senate candidate profiles
Darlene Fitzgerald Price
Party: Democrat.
Born: Oct. 7, 1961.
Residence: McCreary County.
Education: Bachelor of science, Eastern Kentucky University; master of arts, University of Arizona.
Family: Husband Austin Price; son, stepdaughter, 2-year-old granddaughter
Web site: http://www.darlene4senate.com.
James Buckmaster
Party: Democrat.
Born: Sept. 3, 1958.
Residence: Henderson.
Education: Bachelor of science, Brescia College; University of Kentucky college of medicine.
Family: Wife Marcia Buckmaster; eight children, ages 9-26
Web site: http://www.buckmaster2010.com.
Maurice Sweeney
Party: Democrat.
Born: Nov. 26, 1954.
Residence: Eastwood.
Education: Graduate, Eastern Kentucky University.
Family: One son.
Web site: http://www.sweeneyforussenate.com.
Last in a series: This is the last of profiles of the candidates for U.S. Senate in Kentucky’s May 18 primary election. If you missed any, here’s when the previous one were published.
April 19: Republican Trey Grayson
April 20: Republican Rand Paul
April 21: Republicans Gurley Martin, Jon Scribner and John Stephenson
April 22: Democrat Jack Conway
April 23: Democrat Daniel Mongiardo
April 24: Democrats James Buckmaster, Darlene Price and Maurice Sweeney
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It’s not a question of whether they get through the May 18 primary. It’s a question of how they run their campaign leading up to November after they score a surprise knockout of Lt. Gov. Daniel Mongiardo and Attorney General Jack Conway, who have statewide name recognition and huge war chests.
“Once we get past May, we will at that point have the attention of the nation,” says Sweeney. “… When I go across the state, there’s a lot of indecision about whom people are going to support.”
If Sweeney, Price or Buckmaster are to catch fire at the polls, they’ll need to do it soon.
Sweeney’s speech at the Fancy Farm political picnic last year has drawn only 155 views on YouTube; his Facebook online social networking group numbers 234.
Darlene Fitzgerald Price
Of the three lesser-known candidates, Price probably has the most name recognition around Lexington, courtesy of her extensive speaking schedule and her “Price Is Right” yard signs. The Army veteran and former U.S. customs agent in the western United States says she met 16,000 people at the Kentucky State Fair.
The native Kentuckian, who grew up in Fort Thomas and McCreary County, also manned a booth at the recent Lexington home and garden show at Heritage Hall and Rupp Arena. She also says that she spent three weeks walking the Louisville area and that her campaign has enrolled 4,000 volunteers.
Price says that she left her job as a customs agent because of a whistle-blower controversy and that “the drugs rolling across the border are like water through a sieve.” She has co-authored, with Peter S. Ferrara, a book about her experiences, BorderGate: The Story the Government Doesn’t Want You to Read.
“There’s no protection for federal whistle blowers,” she says. “None.”
She is for government-sponsored health insurance, against mountaintop-removal coal mining “because it is unnecessary,” and against the American military presence in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Price is particularly adamant about health care. When she got into the race, she said, “I will not talk to the …. evil blood-sucking vampire insurance companies.”
What Price, 48, sees as the rot of the Washington political process is attributable to one thing: “the disease (of) crony campaign financing.” That’s one of her main reasons for running, she says, because such financing affects so much else throughout the federal government, from lawmaking to everyday government operations such as border patrols.
Price’s campaign stands are a blend of populism, a conviction that the nation’s borders are being compromised and a loathing of the campaign processes she says have tainted government.
Price says she has spent $25,000 to $30,000 of her own money on her campaign. Still, she says, “If I won $30 billion in the lottery tomorrow, you wouldn’t see a mud-slinging ad from me. … If you have to be a bought-off mudslinging politician to run in this race, I’m going to lose.”
James Buckmaster
Buckmaster, a Henderson doctor who runs a family practice, touts his endorsement from Kentucky Right to Life and says he works with the medically uninsured and underinsured all day.
Buckmaster, 51, who has eight children ages 9 to 26, says he has a “Volkswagen policy” rather than a Cadillac policy for his own family’s health care: “The ones with the Cadillac insurance are the reasons why the prices are going so high.”
He thinks that the policy would be a good model for nationwide health care — a high deductible, no exclusions and portability when a worker leaves a job. Medical care that is free, he says, leads to waiting rooms full of all kinds of conditions that could have waited. His plan would be to get medical consumers to search for bargains: Who has the cheapest chest X-ray, the least expensive CAT scan? Read more: http://www.kentucky.com/2010/04/24/1237790/other-democratic-senate-candidates.html#ixzz0m4GW7DaF

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