Kudos to President Barack Obama for choosing Kentucky Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson to work as the liaison with local and state governments on the administration's domestic agenda.
Abramson, who served 21 years as mayor of Louisville, is a good fit for a job that requires understanding how local governments work and what they need. At the announcement Thursday in Frankfort, Abramson noted that as a mayor he had often worked with the person in that job under both Democratic and Republican presidents.
As lieutenant governor the last three years, Abramson has gained a wide understanding of the challenges facing state governments, including health care. No one indicated just how Abramson had attracted the attention of the White House but undoubtedly Kentucky's success in implementing the Affordable Care Act through Kynect played a role. Abramson chaired Kentucky's health care initiative, and one of his tasks in the White House will be to coordinate with states as they deal with the upcoming second open enrollment under the ACA.
He will also work on other domestic initiatives, including infrastructure, affordable housing, transportation and education.
"It's no surprise that President Obama and his advisers recognized that expertise and stole him away," Beshear said Thursday, "they are fortunate to have him."
Beshear deserves a nod not only for choosing Abramson as his running mate but also for giving him real work to do.
Beshear said Crit Luallen, a two-term state auditor who has served several governors in various capacities, will become lieutenant governor. That, too, is a wise and welcome choice.