Judge resolves Kelly Craft residency challenge

Mark Payne
Mark Payne
Mark Payne is the government and politics reporter for LINK nky. Email him at [email protected].

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The residency challenge filed by GOP gubernatorial candidate Eric Deters against fellow candidate Kelly Craft has been resolved, per an order issued in Fayette County Circuit Court. 

“It is hereby ordered and adjudged that, based upon the materials Kelly Craft has produced and attested to and Plaintiff’s review of them, Plaintiff agrees that under the applicable legal standards Kelly Craft has been a ‘resident’ of Kentucky for at least the last six years,” wrote Fayette Circuit Court Judge Lucy A. VanMeter. 

In a Facebook video, Deters said the issue with Craft had been resolved by agreement, “which is, actually, a good thing for the Kentucky state Republican party,” Deters said. “I think Kelly Craft’s campaign, despite all the money, after the KET debate, is crashing and burning.” 

During the heated debate, Deters and Craft traded barbs saying that the former U.N. ambassador was trying to buy the governorship.  

“We need to protect Kentuckians from an Oklahamian trying to buy the governorship,” Deters said.

Deters filed the residency challenge hours before the scheduled debate but announced his plan the week before. 

According to reporting from the Lexington Herald-Leader, there were issues with one of Deters’ claims. 

Deters’ claim that Craft registered to vote in Kentucky in 2018 is invalid, according to reporting in the Herald-Leader and voting records from the Fayette County Clerk. Records show she’s been registered to vote in Fayette County since 1991 — she first registered as a Democrat but then registered as a Republican in 1995. 

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