Bevin, state lawmaker double down on cockfighting statements - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Bevin, state lawmaker double down on cockfighting statements

Image from a video taken at a cockfight (Source: Humane Society of the United States Image from a video taken at a cockfight (Source: Humane Society of the United States
Matt Bevin Matt Bevin
State Rep. Richard Henderson State Rep. Richard Henderson

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A U.S. Senate candidate and a Kentucky state lawmaker sought to explain their positions on cockfighting, one day after a WAVE 3 News investigation caught them at a rally that promoted the illegal sport.

Bevin, who's challenging incumbent U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell in next month's Republican primary, claimed he didn't know it was a pro-cockfighting rally -- even though the speaker before him at the March event said that was the sole purpose of the gathering.

"I am genuinely sorry that my attendance at an event which, other than my comments, appears to have primarily involved a discussion of cockfighting, has created concern on the part of many Kentucky voters," Bevin said in a statement Friday. "I understand that concern."

Bevin said he's never supported cockfighting, a blood sport between two roosters that has long been illegal in Kentucky. But he said it should be up to state lawmakers to decide whether to criminalize the sport.

McConnell's campaign blasted Bevin over the controversy.

"Bevin's cockfighting episode will go down in history as one of the most disqualifying moments in Kentucky political history," said Allison Moore, a spokeswoman for McConnell.

At least one state lawmaker supports eliminating felony punishments for attending cockfighting events. Rep. Richard Henderson, D-Mt. Sterling, told the crowd at the Corbin rally that he had bet on chickens, been to "more than a few" chicken fights, and admitted to enjoying himself.

Friday, Henderson sought to explain his position, saying he had attended "a rooster fight while a younger man."

"However, I spoke at that event to share my believe that the federal government should not have made attendance at these events a felony -- where a person can lose their freedom, their right to vote, their Second Amendment rights and, many times, their life savings," Henderson said in a statement through a spokesman for the House Democratic caucus.

The spokesman didn't reply to multiple requests seeking comment from House Speaker Greg Stumbo, the leader of the Democratic caucus.

Police sources told WAVE 3 News that while attending a cockfight is illegal in Kentucky, there's not much officers can do to Henderson or others unless they see the event or there's video evidence.

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved. 

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Trump's health subsidy shutdown could lead to free insurance

    Trump's health subsidy shutdown could lead to free insurance

    Thursday, October 19 2017 4:51 AM EDT2017-10-19 08:51:37 GMT
    Thursday, October 19 2017 10:33 AM EDT2017-10-19 14:33:17 GMT

    It would have the unintended consequence of making basic health insurance available to more people for free and making upper-tier plans more affordable.

    More >>

    It would have the unintended consequence of making basic health insurance available to more people for free and making upper-tier plans more affordable.

    More >>
  • US tourist fears he was hit in Cuba, years before diplomats

    US tourist fears he was hit in Cuba, years before diplomats

    Thursday, October 19 2017 6:11 AM EDT2017-10-19 10:11:36 GMT
    Thursday, October 19 2017 10:33 AM EDT2017-10-19 14:33:08 GMT

    Chris Allen's mysterious illness on a private 2014 visit to Havana illustrates how profoundly damaging the Cuba mystery has been for two long-estranged neighbors that only recently sought to patch up their...

    More >>

    Chris Allen's mysterious illness on a private 2014 visit to Havana illustrates how profoundly damaging the Cuba mystery has been for two long-estranged neighbors that only recently sought to patch up their relationship.

    More >>
  • Dyslexia possibly caused by treatable eye deformity

    Dyslexia possibly caused by treatable eye deformity

    Wednesday, October 18 2017 2:17 PM EDT2017-10-18 18:17:40 GMT
    Wednesday, October 18 2017 3:32 PM EDT2017-10-18 19:32:54 GMT

    The eyes of dyslexic subjects were different from the eyes of non-dyslexic subjects, which could be the cause of the disorder. There may also be a treatment.

    More >>

    The eyes of dyslexic subjects were different from the eyes of non-dyslexic subjects, which could be the cause of the disorder. There may also be a treatment.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly