Kentucky Gubernatorial candidate and Kentucky’s current Commissioner of Agriculture, Ryan Quarles, made his last rounds around Northern Kentucky Saturday night on his “Big Red Truck Tour” ahead of the primary election on May 16.
Quarles’s first stop in Northern Kentucky was at Buffalo Bobs Family Restaurant in Florence, though he said it was his eighth stop of the day. Later in the evening, he planned to make stops in Kenton County at Skyline Chili in Independence and at the Skyline Tavern in Campbell County. Quarles is among 12 candidates vying to become the Republican nominee in the governor’s race.
Quarles is term-limited as agriculture commissioner and will see his term expire at the end of 2023.
Ahead of Northern Kentucky voters heading to the polls to vote, Quarles told LINK nky that Northern Kentucky’s infrastructure is something he would prioritize should he be elected governor.
“I want to fix I 71 and I 75. They are dangerous roads, especially I 71, which has been neglected,” Quarles said. “We got to fix our infrastructure, and that goes beyond just roads; it also means our waterways—we have the Ohio River. Northern Kentucky sends a lot of taxpayer money to Frankfort, and I want to make sure that the maintenance of infrastructure gets their fair share.”
He also said he would work on the workforce participation crisis.
“The second thing is the workforce participation crisis,” Quarles said. “There are plenty of jobs in Northern Kentucky. It’s a fast-growing area. We got to get people back to work, and I want to be the governor that helps come up with some bold solutions to get people to choose to work. Plus, my mom is from here.”
Quarles said over the last 54 weeks he has spent time learning and listening to Kentuckians all over the commonwealth. He said Tuesday will be a “make or break day” because the Republican Party needs to nominate someone who “has the best chance of beating Governor Andy Beshear.”
Quarles criticized Beshear’s decision during the COVID-19 pandemic to shut down businesses and schools.
“We got to remember that Andy Beshear was the shutdown governor and shut down businesses like this one (Buffalo Bobs) but let the big box store state that wasn’t fair,” he said. “He kept our kids out of the classroom much longer than was necessary. Now our test scores have gone down, and that wasn’t fair for kids and their futures.”
In attendance at Quarles Boone County stop Saturday night was Kentucky Representative in the 64th District, Kim Moser, and Boone County Judge/Executive Gary Moore.
Part of Quarles’s closing remarks was encouraging people to get out and vote.
“Very few people will determine who the nominee is,” Quarles said. “That means that Northern Kentucky can punch above its weight class to determine who the Republican nominee is.”