Tribune-Courier News Reporter
Three candidates recently announced they will seek the office being vacated by Senator Bob Leeper. Leeper announced in Oct. he would not seek re-election to the District 2 senate seat at the end of his term in 2014.
Marshall County native Danny Carroll, David Hoffman of Paducah and Jeff Parker each announced their intent to seek election to the seat which covers the counties of Ballard, Carlisle, Marshall and McCracken.
Carroll held a news conference to discuss his platform last Tuesday, saying he would officially file paperwork at the start of the new year.
Hoffman filed paperwork for the seat with the Secretary of State on Dec. 9.
Parker plans to file this week and is the only one so far that will be running on a Democratic ticket.
Carroll is a Marshall County native who served 24 years with the Paducah Police Department. He retired as assistant chief in 2010 and has since served as the president and CEO of Easter Seals of West Kentucky.
Carroll has made three unsuccessful bids for sheriff in Marshall County. He first ran on the Democratic ticket in 1998, then again in 2002 and was defeated by Terry Anderson by only 133 votes. In 2006 he ran as a Republican and was defeated by now-sheriff Kevin Byars.
Carrol said if elected he would work to represent all the counties in the district equally. He said repairing the state’s budget woes would be a top priority.
“There have been a lot of cuts to the budget -- to teachers and school systems,” he said. “I don’t believe in spending money we don’t have, but we’ve got to improve this economy while being fiscally responsible. I see a lot of potential for a lot of good things to happen in the Senate in the next couple of years and I want to be part of it.
“I want to come into Frankfort as a problem solver,” he said. I’ll work on both sides of the political aisle while representing us all equally.”
Hoffman is a retired law enforcement commander and administrator of his wife’s medical practice. He said he decided to run because of his vast knowledge of public protection and the business industry to improve the region.
“Our community has been so good to me and my family, and not a day goes by where I don’t feel blessed and grateful,” he said. “I see the commitment this community makes to family, church and charity and I know for certain that now is the right time for me to give back and make a difference on behalf of my neighbors, my region and my state.”
Hoffman said if elected his conservative, common-sense approach to public policy will help as he tackles the issues of medical care, increasing economic opportunites, lowering taxes and education.
Parker, the McCracken County School Board Chairman, said his position with the board gives him an understanding in regard to the cuts public education has received during the past several years that the other candidates wouldn’t understand as thouroughly.
Along with leading the school board, Parker co-owns City Rockers Brick Oven Pizza on Bleich Road, in Paducah, which he said gives him valuable insight into the needs of the region.
Parker also worked for the U.S. Postal Service for 22 years.
Although Parker acknowledges he has a lack of prior political experience, he said that inexperience presents an opportunity for him to bring a new perspective to the political arena.
Parker said he was a family man, dedicated to equally representing all four counties.