February 27, 2020 Blog, Press Release

KDP Calls on Sen. Philip Wheeler to Resign; Demands Republican Party of Kentucky and Republican Caucuses to Denounce Hateful, Bigoted Campaigning

The Kentucky Democratic Party is calling on Kentucky State Senator Phillip Wheeler to resign after a video surfaced of the state senator making homophobic remarks at a campaign event for state representative-elect Richard White.

The Kentucky Democratic Party is also calling for the Republican leadership in State Senate, State House, and the Republican Party of Kentucky to denounce Wheeler’s comments, and all bigoted campaigning, immediately.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reported on the remarks late Wednesday night. Senator Wheeler has a history of bigoted attitudes; most recently, Senator Wheeler was forced to apologize and delete social media posts after he was after he was caught using racist language and posting racists memes on Facebook roughly one month ago.

“It’s time for Phillip Wheeler to go. He’s an embarrassment to the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and his hateful, ignorant comments do not have any place in the Statehouse,” Marisa McNee, spokeswoman for the KDP, said. “If Senator Wheeler does not resign, the Senate must censure him immediately.”

Additionally, Kentucky Democrats want the Republican Party of Kentucky, the House Republican Caucus and the Senate Republican Caucus to not only disavow Wheeler and his remarks, but publicly pledge to stop anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and campaigning.

As the Herald-Leader reported, such campaigning, including Wheeler’s remarks, were a heavy feature of the Republican campaign in the closing days of the special election in House District 99.

“Kentucky Republicans need to make it clear — verbal attacks against the LGBTQ community will not be tolerated. Homophobic campaign messaging will not be tolerated. This type of campaigning is gross and dangerous. It’s not enough to just appear at rallies and appear sympathetic — this type of campaigning must end and be denounced at all levels of the Republican Party,” McNee said.