Republican lieutenant governor candidate KC Crosbie resigns from state GOP post

syoungman@herald-leader.comMarch 12, 2014 

KC Crosbie resigned Tuesday as finance chairwoman of the Republican Party of Kentucky, just more than a week after she was announced as Louisville businessman Hal Heiner's running mate in the 2015 race for governor and lieutenant governor.

Crosbie, of Lexington, will be replaced by state Rep. David Osborne, R-Prospect.

In a statement released by Heiner's campaign, Crosbie said her new role as a candidate meant it was time to "pass along these duties."

"I have appreciated the opportunity to serve the RPK over the past two years," Crosbie said. "Given my recent decision to run on the ticket with Hal Heiner as his lieutenant governor and my current responsibilities as RNC National Committee Woman, I believe that it is the right time for me and our party to pass along these duties to someone as qualified and committed as Representative Osborne."

Heiner's announcement of Crosbie as his running mate left allies of Agriculture Commissioner James Comer, a likely gubernatorial candidate, leery that one of their would-be rivals was a fixture at the state party.

The day before Heiner's announcement, Republican House Floor Leader Jeff Hoover told the Herald-Leader that Crosbie should resign from the post.

Comer said Wednesday that he was happy that the party had taken steps to make sure that winning control of the state House for the first time since 1921 was the Kentucky GOP's undisputed priority.

"This situation put the party in a really tough spot, and I'm excited to see that my good friend, Rep. David Osborne, is stepping in to steady the ship and make sure that the focus stays on flipping the House," Comer said.

Steve Robertson, chairman of the state party, said he was grateful to Crosbie for her time raising money "to further our party's administrative, state legislative and federal election goals."

"She has dedicated an incredible amount of time to this volunteer position, and I am grateful for her service," Robertson said.

Crosbie also is one of the state's three members of the Republican National Committee, and Heiner campaign manager Joe Burgan said on the day of the announcement that she has no intention of resigning that post.

Osborne has contributed heavily to the state party and is regarded as a warrior for state Republicans in their effort to retake the House.

"David Osborne is someone who has worked for years to raise money for the party and has been focused on creating the first Republican majority in the State House in nearly a century," Robertson said.

Osborne said in a statement that he was "honored to assume this important position of leadership in the Republican Party of Kentucky and plan to work diligently to help our party reach its goals."

Sam Youngman: (502) 875-3793. Twitter: @samyoungman. Blog: Bluegrasspolitics.bloginky.com.

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