Unlike my opponent, I am willing to provide the leadership necessary to bring this issue to a vote of Kentucky citizens. We must stop this unfettered competition against the Kentucky horse industry and the drain on the Kentucky state treasury. We must bring these dollars back to Kentucky to help protect the horse industry and benefit our schools.
Editor's Note: Both Kentucky gubernatorial candidates were posed the following question: "Why should the horse industry in Kentucky support you for governor?" Here is the response by candidate Ben Chandler.By Ben Chandler -- The Kentucky horse industry is our state's signature industry. It is a source of pride to all Kentuckians that we are known throughout the world for the horses we produce and race. Throughout my campaign, I have said that Kentucky must protect and promote this industry--the whole industry. I was born and still live in the heart of horse country in Woodford County (Versailles, Ky.). I have grown up with the horse industry and have a special affection for it. For me, the horse industry is a major part of our state's heritage, history, culture, and tradition. My administration will not just protect the horse industry; it will strive to strengthen this Kentucky treasure. The horse industry has a $3.4-billion overall impact on the Kentucky economy. It provides more than 53,000 Kentucky jobs. It is Kentucky's number one agricultural business, providing more than $1 billion in cash receipts annually. Every day, thousands of Kentuckians go to our neighboring states for gaming activities. As a result, every year, our horse industry and our state treasury are losing millions of dollars in revenue, which go to improve the schools of those states and not ours. That is why I support putting the issue of expanded gaming at horse racing tracks to the people of Kentucky. Any plan for expanded gaming must be approved by a statewide vote of the people.