There are lessons to be learned from this election season. Those who want to be governor — who doesn't? — can make use of these lessons.
The first rule is to get rich quick. Only the Clintons can get elected and then get rich. In Kentucky you must first become a multimillionaire, then loan yourself enough money to win and then good government road contractors and good government lawyers and good government engineers and the like will pay you back that loan. You would be just as rich and now powerful enough to suit your ego.
The exception to Rule One is some self-made guy like Andy Beshear, who raised $2 million for an uncontested election. Some suspect he has further ambitions, but I imagine he only wants to be a good attorney general, and will be the first attorney general not to run for governor.
Secondly, you must know how to spend that money. Take a couple hundred grand and buy off anybody you have hit in college. It will be worth it in the long run.
Next lesson: Don't pick a legislator as your running mate. All legislators think they are more famous than they are, and they seldom win statewide races. You are better off with a refugee from inner city Detroit. Picking the former sheriff of Menifee County as a running mate was worth a good hundred votes.
Another rule: Adopt a wide range of children. Of course, you can only afford nine children if you are rich enough to hire them raised, but if you can adopt from every voting bloc, you have a head start.
Additionally, a good point is, if you get beat in one election, leave your signs up for years thereafter. Matt Bevin has had his signs up since he lost to Sen. Mitch McConnell. We in the mountains believe in the signs and go by them.
If you go negative, you must go real negative. Hal Heiner thought a new Carhartt coat would get him elected, and failed to ever point out that Bevin is from New Hampshire, which ought to be enough to beat anybody. It is worse, even, than being from Louisville.
And remember, nobody gives a hill of beans about who is agriculture commissioner, but people hold it against one of them if they help put former commissioner and UK basketball star Richie Farmer in the pen for piddling stuff. People claim they like a reformer, but nobody really does. People do like a friendly guard who can hit threes.
This is not necessarily an election rule or tip, but an observation. You can beat someone who gets more votes than you. James Comer got about 55,000 more votes than Will T. Scott, but the latter beat the former. Journalist Al Cross thinks congressman Hal Rogers put Will T. up to it. When it came out that Pike County was about the last county to report, Al wondered aloud about the Majestic precinct. At that time Will T. needed over 50,000 votes, and nobody would have been surprised if he didn't carry Majestic by that much.
For those of you who don't know geography, Majestic is close to Woodman and Stopover.
Reach Larry Webster, a Pikeville attorney, at email@example.com.