FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear has been re-elected, becoming the second Democrat to win a U.S. gubernatorial race this year amid lingering economic uncertainty that’s already proving worrisome to President Barack Obama’s 2012 effort.
Beshear easily overcame challenges from Republican David Williams and independent Gatewood Galbraith, in a conservative state where voters routinely elect Republicans in national races. With 50 percent of precincts reporting, Beshear had 241,211 votes or 58 percent, to 131,319 votes for Williams or 31 percent. Galbraith had 44,893 votes or 11 percent.
Williams, the state Senate president, and Galbraith, an attorney in his fifth run for governor, campaigned on claims Beshear didn’t do enough to create jobs in a state where one in 10 workers is unemployed. Beshear said Kentucky was emerging stronger from the downturn.