You might say that Kentucky Republicans "hit the three" Tuesday with the capture of the governor's office by Ernie Fletcher, the secretary of state's office by C.M. "Trey" Grayson, and the office of agriculture commissioner by Richie Farmer, the great three-point shooter for the UK Wildcats.
But there was a fourth Republican politician who if not on the ballot Tuesday seemed never to be far from the minds of at least the Democratic candidates - President George W. Bush.
From the beginning of his campaign, Democrat Ben Chandler and his supporters tried to make Bush and his economic policies - mainly his tax cuts - the issue. As late as last week, former governor and U.S. senator Wendell Ford was in Danville and Harrodsburg waxing eloquent about the "Bush deficit."
Clearly, that strategy backfired. President Bush proved to be much more of an asset than a liability to Fletcher. Not only did he help raise money for the Kentucky race, but he won him votes with his campaign appearances in the state. State Republican Chairwoman Ellen Williams said Bush was particularly helpful in western Kentucky, where conservative Democrats have tended to vote Republican in national and congressional races.