Politics & Government

Kentuckians take prominent roles in Republican convention

Kentucky Republicans served in prominent roles in the final session of the GOP's national convention, from confirming the party's vice presidential candidate to overseeing the official paperwork to giving PBS some commentary.

Kentucky's senior U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, who is Republican U.S. Senate leader, led the delegates through the process of approving Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as John McCain's running mate.

Two Kentuckians, Republican National Committee Chairman Robert "Mike" Duncan of Inez and RNC staff attorney Jennifer Sheehan — a Hickman native and graduate of Centre College and University of Kentucky College of Law — then oversaw the finalizing of all the paperwork for the McCain-Palin ticket to be placed on ballots in all 50 states.

Duncan, as RNC chairman, also had the honor of opening up the ceremonies Thursday night.

The Kentucky delegation, which had a front-row spot near the stage, received plenty of TV face time throughout the week.

Some were even chosen for interviews.

PBS political correspondent Judy Woodruff interviewed Republican Secretary of State Trey Grayson Thursday night, asking him "from the perspective of someone who's not in the nation's capital, what needs changing?"

"A lot," Grayson said on national TV. "I think one of the biggest things is that there are so many problems that this country faces that Congress hasn't really worked to address. Democrats and Republicans have opportunities to work together, but, too often, they don't do it.

"I think a president who is strong and respected by people on both sides, can bring people to the table, find common ground and make them compromise."