U.S. Senate (R): Mitch McConnell
Republicans would be silly to trade in a potential Senate majority leader for an unproven challenger who insists he didn't know he was speaking at a cockfighting rally.
U.S. Senate (D): Alison Lundergan Grimes
Running to fix what's "wrong with Washington" and for better pay for minimum-wage workers and women, Kentucky's secretary of state has shown she can put together a war chest and organization capable of seriously challenging the well-funded incumbent.
U.S. House, 6th District (D): Elisabeth Jensen
The Lexington businesswoman and educator is building coalitions across party lines and around the district focused on work force training, education, health care and infrastructure investment.
House, 76th District (R): Richard Marrs
The Lexington native with an advertising firm has made gains against Rep. Ruth Ann Palumbo in two runs. State budgeting and fiscal responsibility are key priorities.
House, 77th District (D): George Brown Jr.
Deeper experience and a longer record of leadership and service give the former Urban County Council member the edge in a race that will choose a successor for retiring Rep. Jesse Crenshaw.
(Recommended for fall ballot)
Mayor: Anthany Beatty, Jim Gray
Beatty's sincere interest in service and his record as a former police chief make him an attractive candidate, but he has not made a strong case yet for why he is the best candidate.
Gray, in his first term as mayor, has improved efficiency and morale in city government significantly, and put his leadership role to good use championing new and imaginative development.
Council-at-large: Bill Cegelka, Ray DeBolt, Steve Kay, Richard Moloney and Kevin Stinnett
Cegelka demonstrates an understanding of the issues and opportunities facing the community, and insight into how to address them.
DeBolt's wide experience as a police officer and attorney, along with his genuine interest in serving, make him a strong candidate.
Kay has shown during his first council term a willingness to take on important and difficult work, including serving as chair of the commission on homelessness.
In several government roles, Moloney has shown a passion for helping overlooked constituents, making government work for people and dealing with festering infrastructure issues.
Stinnett has ably represented his district, working particularly effectively to address storm-water and sanitary-sewer issues that have plagued parts of the district and the community.
Council District 2: Shevawn Akers, Michael Stuart
Akers' first-term accomplishments include breaking stubborn impasse on food trucks.
Businessman Stuart impresses with his service on arts boards, and understanding of district's and city's needs.
Council District 3: Chuck Ellinger, Jake Gibbs
Ellinger has displayed an even-handed approach to his work as a countywide council representative.
Gibbs displays a thoughtful, nuanced understanding of many of the complex issues affecting the community and the district.
Council District 4: Julian Beard, Susan Lamb
Beard has been an admirably independent voice on the council, using his background as a banker and economic-development executive to inform his votes.
Lamb, although making her first run for city office, knows how local government works and has an impressive track record promoting efficiency and transparency at city hall as council clerk.
Council District 6: Angela Evans, Darren Hawkins
Evans has a clear understanding of how government works and an appreciation of the analytical skills needed to evaluate policies and approaches to deal with public issues.
Hawkins has a deep understanding of the nuts and bolts of city services derived from eight years as president of his homeowners' association.
Council District 8: LeTonia A, Jones, Dave Vinson
Jones has proven herself an able advocate for marginalized populations and individuals.
Vinson's neighborhood activism blew the whistle on mismanagement of Bluegrass Area Development District.