Pamela Stevenson defeated in race to become Kentucky’s first Black female AG

Stevenson, a 27-year Air Force veteran, tried to position herself as a seasoned patriotic leader who would restore democracy.

Democrat Pamela Stevenson was defeated in her quest to become Kentucky’s first Black female attorney general. The state representative was bested by Republican Russell Coleman, a former U.S. attorney.

The race for Kentucky’s top prosecutor office was called by CNN and NBC News.

Stevenson, a 27-year Air Force veteran, tried to position herself as a seasoned patriotic leader who would restore democracy and return the attorney general’s office to “the people.” She focused her campaign on statewide issues with a national tinge.

State Rep. Pamela Stevenson, the Democratic nominee for Kentucky attorney general. (Photo: TheGrio)

Beyond tackling crime, Stevenson’s campaign platform focused on democratic freedoms such as abortion access, voting and LGBTQ+ rights, promising to be a uniter amid increasing political divisions across the state and the country. 

Since entering the Kentucky House, Stevenson, an ordained minister, earned a reputation for speaking her mind without reservation. Several of her floor speeches have gone viral, including one in protest of Kentucky passing one of the strictest anti-trans bills in the country.

The retired colonel also linked her opponent to former President Donald Trump, who appointed Coleman to a Department of Justice commission during his administration. While campaigning, Coleman promised to return to a tough-on-crime agenda.

“Don’t tell me you believe in law enforcement when your biggest person that you hail is the biggest person that’s breaking the law,” Stevenson previously told theGrio.

Coleman said his priority as attorney general would be “the same as President Trump’s: Make America Safe Again.”

Stevenson slammed her opponent’s tough-on-crime platform and attacked his reported record of leniency for child sex offenders. 

“Don’t talk to me about tough on crime when the least of these who can’t protect themselves, you let their offenders go,” she told theGrio.

Voters cast their ballots Tuesday at the Shelby Traditional Academy in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Michael Swensen/Getty Images)

Stevenson said Coleman and the state’s current attorney general, Daniel Cameron, who is running for governor, were part of a national Republican Party trend more interested in a “power grab” than representing and protecting communities. 

Stevenson said she wanted to return the attorney’s general office to “the people,” including those in Black and brown communities who are often ignored. 

“You only have limited resources, and you focus your whole office as a weapon so you can have power. Meanwhile, Kentuckians are suffering,” she said. “They don’t have what they need to take care of their families.”

Coleman was victorious in his race against Stevenson, but his party did not fare as well in the gubernatorial race. Cameron was handily defeated by incumbent Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear.

Though Trump defeated Biden in Kentucky during the 2020 presidential election by 62% to 36%, Beshear remains a popular figure in Kentucky, leading the state during the COVID-19 pandemic and several deadly natural disasters.

Gerren Keith Gaynor

Gerren Keith Gaynor is a White House Correspondent and the Managing Editor of Politics at theGrio. He is based in Washington, D.C.

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