LONDON- The field of governor candidates is growing.
State Rep. Robert Goforth, R-East Bernstadt, officially announced his candidacy for governor Tuesday in Laurel County.
The Republican began his announcement describing how overcoming growing up in poverty helped shape him to be the man he is today.
While his upbringing was a major part of his speech, another main part of his announcement was criticizing current Governor Matt Bevin. Goforth attacked Bevin for not being from Kentucky.
"I'm not a New England transplant, using the people of Kentucky to feed my ego or audition for a job in Washington DC," he said. "Rather, I empathize with millions of my fellow Kentuckians. I understand and I respect you because I am you."
Goforth went on to paint Bevin as condescending toward the people of Kentucky, and a corporate elitist.
"We need a governor who leads more than he lambastes. Our Commonwealth needs a Chief Executive who is not molded not by New England and Wall Street. But by Kentucky and Main Street," he said. "A governor wants the breaks to go to those in the break room, not just the board room. We need a governor who takes pride in not what he blocks, but what he builds. We need a governor who is a champion for and a friend of every Kentuckian."
Goforth is billing himself as a true conservative taking stances against abortion and expanded gaming while trying to appeal to teachers.
"The Goforth Hogan ticket will oppose any efforts to take money away from public schools local school districts and give it to charter schools," he said. "We are committed to publicly funding all of Kentucky's public pension systems, and we will remain committed to a defined benefit system."
As a pharmacist, he says combating the opioid epidemic will be one of his major issues.
While Gov. Bevin has yet to file his paperwork to run--if he does, he brings with him his own personal wealth--as well as the likely financial backing of the Republican Party. Despite that--Goforth isn't concerned with being outspent.
"I'm not worried about how much money Gov. Bevin is going to spend on this election," he said. "I'm worried about the people and what's right for people. The people are going to see that we are going to see our message. They are going to see we are real Kentuckians offering real solutions."
Mike Hogan will be Goforth's running mate. Hogan is a fifth term Lawrence County Attorney, he also ran for the Republican nomination for the Attorney General in 2015.
Goforth was elected to the General Assembly in 2018 in a special election. He owns four pharmacies.