Gun control supporters stood outside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s home in Kentucky on Sunday night — protesting and hurling death threats at him — while broadcasting on Facebook Live. Guy Benson got reaction from Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin.
Guy Benson And now Governor Matt Bevin of Kentucky joins us on the line. Governor it’s great to have you here. Thanks for joining us.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) Great to be with you and I could not agree more with the very last point you just made. Give us a break indeed.
Guy Benson I’d like to just pick your brain because we have you here. This is in the news both of your U.S. Senators in your state have undergone some health issues and there were we played some of the audio, the video of the protesters outside of Senator McConnell’s private house last night saying and chanting some awful things I saw that you got into it I think with the mayor of Louisville on Twitter. Just give us your reaction and talk us through your back and forth with the mayor.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) And the back and forth was pretty limited. I’m just simply saying listen you are this is a poor reflection on the city of Louisville. It’s a poor reflection on Kentucky when you have such mayhem unfolding. This idea that this is a peaceful protest or an exercise of one’s first amendment rights is a bit of a stretch. Those things are all things that are certainly afforded to us in America. They’re good to support but this is not that this is people literally chanting death threats saying various I don’t know what clip you played but depending on what it was it was very specific and potentially very vulgar and maybe you had to beat stuff out but it did. This is these are people that are not saying things in broad measure. They’re not exercising peacefully. They’re calling for the death of an elected official. They’re very specific in those calls. They’re doing it intentionally in the middle of the night to try to keep him and anyone that lives in his area up. It is an absolute disturbance of the peace and the mayor of the city is creating an embarrassment for himself whether he realizes it or not in his stating that he stands with peaceful protesters. The question I had for him: do you stand with people that make death threats? You know this death threats are something to be taken seriously. Law enforcement should not be standing by while that occurs. They should not. This is a land of laws. These laws should be enforced and there should be no tolerance for this. I don’t care which side of the political aisle someone is on they should not be subjected to this simply because they are an elected official.
Guy Benson Governor, we’re grappling with so many different issues in the wake of what happened this weekend. There are questions about guns, right. There is questions about mental health. There’s questions about red flags if there mister if they are caught. What can be done about them. There’s questions about radicalization and white supremacy on the Internet. There’s a lot of very difficult and complex problems that play into and lead to some of these tragedies. And yet I find myself today and I get frustrated with myself because I’m almost overcome by anger and frustration seeing many many people in the media and on the left basically telling anyone who disagrees with them on policy issues that we are somehow complicit in this. And I just don’t know how we even come close to doing things that are productive and proactive together. If this is the abominable food fight that we get into virtually every time something like this happens.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) You know it’s ironic. I literally received this morning a text from a good friend who I’ll simply say this has been a senior level very senior level person in Washington D.C. In recent years who’s not there at this time. And in taking one line from this text he says what an angry hateful place it has become– speaking about D.C.. You could not put it more exactly it has become angry, it has become hateful, it has become divisive… And it is counterproductive. But back to the premise of your question, if we are to assume that one more rule and one more law would have prevented these incredible tragedies, then we are kidding ourselves. It is it is illogical to assume that a person willing to kill a person would be willing to comply with some lesser law that would have prevented them from being in a position to do so. We have got here. And in light of all the things you just mentioned at the outset of your question this is not just this issue or that issue. It is behavioral health and it is questions about access to weapons and it is questions about you know hate and nationalism and supremacy and all these things that come together in ways that people don’t even fully understand and that create rhetoric this way or that way. What this speaks to is the crumbling of our culture. There is a shredding of the fabric of America in a way that is underlying all of these things and no one is being honest about this or what the causes of this are. And I’m telling you until we start to ask why is this happening now. And it didn’t happen a generation or two or three ago. What is the underlying cause. We want to whistle past the graveyard and pretend that there’s nothing other than a new rule that will fix this and it’s not it’s not that simple.
Guy Benson And you know governor I was thinking about this. I’m not sure our political class is actually capable of being better than this at this point. And I know that’s a very cynical dark view and maybe I’m I’m just in a rough place right now but I think the incentives are so powerful and strong to be terrible and to signal and to play to your base and to other otherwise when there’s a moment of crisis. I don’t know that we are better than this and I think that starts at the top with President Trump. A lot of the time I’ll say that for myself. I think it applies to his much of his opposition a lot of the time. It is extremely frustrating to me and again I don’t want to belabor it. I’d rather talk to you about Kentucky and the reason that we had you on in the first place is talk about you’ve got an election coming up and let’s just pin it to that because I don’t want to go down this rabbit hole too much with you because it’s it’s…
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) Let me say one thing real quick in response to what you said. If we assume that nothing can be done we’re right. If we assume we’re going to lose we’re right. If we assume that we’ve passed the point of no return we will be correct. And I refuse to give in to that because you think about it at any number of points in our history. There have been great leaders among us who were at the time in the moment in which they said these things not popular. People that were very controversial people that were despised and hated just as we find today people like Abraham Lincoln who at that moment in time called upon us to reach out to to further to find within us the better angels of our nature. This is something we’ve got to continue to believe in because the history of the world has always turned on those men and women who have stepped up in these seminal moments in time to be the better angels of our nature to represent it to inspire it to demand it to lead on this because there are among us including among elected officials good men and women who are capable of doing the right thing. They need to be led. They need to believe they need to have support from we the people because this is what has made us great to this point. It is the only thing that will preserve us. But as soon as we give up, the battle is over we’ve got to man the wall and man the gates. Whatever analogy you want to use you go and I will mean something.
Guy Benson And I I will not be defeatist about the country. I’m just very jaded right now about our leadership. And you’re right there are good people on both sides of the aisle doing their best. And there are others who are not.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) I share your cynicism a bit.
Guy Benson We need we need better. We need better.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) This is the first political job I’ve ever had. So I I find myself in this cesspool of the political ranks of the 21st century and in the sad reality is there are many here in the cesspool that think they’re in a hot tub and now it’s that group that we need to try to you know shuffle on out of here. But I tell you what I we’re still blessed to be Americans. I know you know that. I know this show and this network know that. You’re listened to by people who know it and believe it and will fight for it. And this is what we’re trying to do here in Kentucky. I mean we’re going to die by incredible upside.
Guy Benson And Governor I think when I said that I’m not sure that we are currently capable of doing better– I specifically mentioned the political class. I think that our people are vastly better than much of our political class at the moment. And I hope that the political class will improve and some of that will take leadership and also judgment on the part of voters. Speaking of which only in about a minute and a half last left here with Governor Matt Bevin of Kentucky. I was at an event fairly recently a couple of months back where you spoke in Florida. You talked about a lot of the accomplishments that you’ve been racking up in the state of Kentucky. A lot of which seem pretty impressive to me. I also look at some of the polling where you are listed depending on which one you look at. Among one of the least popular governors in the country. Can you maybe walk us through your thought process on how those two those two things co-exist and live next to each other and how you plan on turning it around. Because I know you’re going to be running for re-election. Tell us what the contours of that race in the case that you’re going to bring to Kentuckians.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) Sure. I’m in a re-election race right now. If anybody wants to get the specifics you can go to MattBevin.com you can get the specifics to the heart of your question. A thing if you make the hard decisions you will make people uncomfortable. I don’t any political decision based on whether or not it’s going to make me popular. I don’t care about the political expediency or even the political impact. I do what’s right. If it’s pension reform, if it’s tax reform, if it’s bringing school choice, if it’s establishing you know an assault against entrenched interests that don’t work for the people. These are things I ran on. These are things that are controversial but they are transforming our state. Record revenue. Record low unemployment record levels of employment record levels of capital invested. Record revenue for the state. We’ve cut our income taxes corporate and personal by 17 percent and still had record levels of revenue. We’re changing this state. We’re transforming it and it’s creating angst among the entitled and the entrenched in it doesn’t bother me elect. We will win re-election I believe it. It’s a tight race. They’re never in the history of Kentucky has been two consecutive Republican governors. No governor has ever won re-election as a Republican. And no Republican has ever followed a Republican. So I’m trying to do something unprecedented. I believe it will be happening and I encourage people disregard the polls because frankly it’s the people at the ballot box that decide these things.
Guy Benson Governor Matt Bevin of Kentucky we are out of time but I appreciate you coming on. I appreciate the pep talk about America sorely needed on days like this. Governor thank you.
Gov. Matt Bevin (KY) Thank you sir.
Guy Benson Stepping aside coming back right after this.