Linda Belcher, Rebecca Johnson both pro-gaming for Kentucky

Published: Feb. 10, 2018 at 3:47 AM EST|Updated: Feb. 12, 2018 at 6:06 PM EST
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SHEPHERDSVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Bullitt County voters head to the polls Feb. 20 to fill the vacant 49 District House seat after the suicide of incumbent Republican Dan Johnson two months ago.

It's a district that has had very close races over the past decade between Republicans and Democrats, including Johnson's win by fewer than 200 votes in 2016.

>> More Bullitt County news on

Now it's a race between the woman Dan Johnson defeated in that close race in 2016, Linda Belcher, and Johnson's wife. Rebecca.

Belcher has held the seat for several terms before and hopes to go back to Frankfort. But on several hot issues this legislative session, the candidates seem to agree.

Both candidates told WAVE 3 News Anchor Scott Reynolds that they support medical marijuana in Kentucky. And when it comes to legalized gambling, once again they concur.

"Well we already have bingo you know and we see most of our dollars going across the river to Indiana because they have a casino. And I hate that we're missing all that," Johnson said. "I know that Louisville Downs is holding some equipment right now for Churchill Downs and that possibly there could be slot machines coming in and I feel like Churchill Downs is the right place for that to happen."

Belcher says that when she talked with voters in the 49th District recently she heard the same theme.

"Some of them were saying, you know we already have gaming in Kentucky, let's go ahead and make it for sure and pass a law and see if we can get some revenue streaming in you know from gaming," she said.

+ Rebecca Johnson absent from last public forum before special election
+ Rebecca Johnson to face late husband's opponent for 49th District seat

A bill presented in the state legislature would put the issue of gaming in front of voters in a referendum if it makes its way out of Frankfort. It's one issue that seems to be gaining support from both parties, even if it doesn't happen this time around.

It's one of the ways to help pay down the state worker's pension shortfall that some lawmakers estimate is $40 to $60 billion dollars over the next 20 years.

See much more from Belcher and Johnson during their appearances on Sunday Morning Politics with Scott Reynolds. View each of their interviews in the videos above, or follow these links:

WATCH INTERVIEWS: Rebecca Johnson | Linda Belcher

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