FRANKFORT, KY (WAVE) - Drew Curtis, the founder of the website Fark.com, submitted several thousand signatures and paid a $500 filing fee Monday in his independent bid for Kentucky governor.
Curtis and his running mate -- his wife, Heather -- brought to the state Capitol a stack of papers that they said included more than 9,000 signatures. The number was more than enough to get their names on November's ballot.
Curtis is running against the Democratic ticket of Jack Conway and Sannie Overly and the Republican slate of Matt Bevin and Jenean Hampton. The digital entrepreneur railed on his opponents during a news conference on the state Capitol steps.
"Jack Conway has yet to say no to any question that begins, 'Would you fund this?' And Matt Bevin can't remember what his policy positions are 20 minutes after he says them," Curtis told reporters. "Both parties are deeply dissatisfied with their candidates."
The Secretary of State's office took about five hours Monday to review the signatures and determine there were more than 5,000, as required by state law. The filing deadline for independent candidates is 4 p.m. Tuesday.
Curtis has much work ahead of him to gain access to the remaining debates in the governor's race, some of which require candidates to have 10 percent support in polls. In the most recent Courier-Journal/WHAS-TV Bluegrass Poll, Conway had 45 percent to Bevin's 42 percent, while Curtis trailed with 8 percent.
Bevin and Conway's campaign spokesmen both had no comment Monday on Curtis's entrance into the race. In late July, Bevin dismissed Curtis to a Republican crowd in western Kentucky, saying, "I honestly don't know his name, but he's not going to be your next governor."
Curtis said he would rely on social media to earn campaign contributions, pledging that he wouldn't take "influence money" in exchange for his support on issues.
"If everyone who ever said, 'Government does not work for me,' comes out and votes in November, I will win in a landslide," Curtis said. "That's a fact."
Curtis said he was a registered Democrat until last year, when he switched to independent. He said he voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 but had forgotten who he voted for in 2012.
Asked which down-ballot candidates he supports this year, Curtis praised Hampton, calling her "amazing" and saying the two had recently discussed "Batman" and "The Walking Dead" for 30 minutes.
"She's my kind of people," Curtis said.
Curtis said his father worked in the public defender's office in Frankfort and his mother is a Lutheran pastor. Curtis started a company that became Frankfort's first Internet service provider, before launching Fark.com -- a website with the slogan "Real News. Real Funny."
On the issues, Curtis said he opposed a statewide right-to-work law. He added that he didn't mind if counties adopted local right-to-work ordinances, saying they could be an "experiment."
Curtis said he would sign a bill legalizing the use of recreational marijuana.
He said he thought Kentucky had enough money to cover the Medicaid expansion under the federal health care law through 2017, but was unsure whether the state could maintain the program by 2020.
Curtis said Kentucky county clerks should do their jobs and issue marriage licenses to all couples that qualify.