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2003-12-05 Interview with John "Eck" Rose, December 5, 2003 Leg001:2004OH04 Leg 68 01:54:31 Kentucky Legislature Oral History Project Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries Legislators -- Kentucky -- Interviews. Health care reform -- Kentucky. Legislative bodies -- Ethics. Kentucky. General Assembly -- Officials and employees -- Discipline. Kentucky. General Assembly -- Appropriations and expenditures. Kentucky. Governor (1991-1995 : Jones) Kentucky. Governor (1995-2003 : Patton) Kentucky. Governor (2003-2007 : Fletcher) Educational change. Fletcher, Ernie, 1952- Medical laws and legislation Jones, Brereton Patton, Paul E., 1937- Blandford, Don Chandler, Ben, 1959- BOPTROT role of legislator ethics legislation Lobbyists healthcare legislation provider tax Budget Leadership legislative independence gubernatorial bid campaigning political philosophy education reform Republican takeover ethics bills following BOPTROT Senate (1978-1998), 28th district Senate Assistant President Pro Tem, 1986 -- Senate President Pro Tem, 1988-1992 -- Senate President, 1994-1996 Clark County (Ky.) – Estill County (Ky.) – Powell County (Ky.) – Montgomery County (Ky.) – Bath County (Ky.) – Fleming County (Ky.) – Lee County (Ky. John "Eck" Rose; interviewee Eric Moyen; interviewer 2004OH004_LEG068_Rose 1:|20(3)|48(2)|74(2)|111(11)|144(10)|169(5)|209(6)|235(12)|262(5)|283(6)|299(10)|322(2)|344(9)|360(6)|377(3)|389(8)|415(7)|429(5)|446(2)|463(7)|488(9)|506(14)|525(11)|545(10)|557(7)|591(2)|614(1)|640(7)|657(2)|673(3)|707(12)|739(3)|759(5)|778(9)|801(7)|812(11)|835(4)|862(4)|881(1)|905(1)|922(1)|940(6)|958(7)|971(15)|988(8)|1013(11)|1047(7)|1072(12)|1097(6)|1117(4)|1136(3)|1158(1)|1173(10)|1192(3)|1208(3)|1226(6)|1246(9)|1269(1)|1303(3)|1331(4)|1353(2)|1375(2)|1392(4)|1409(3)|1453(12)|1477(12)|1499(12)|1515(4)|1540(16)|1553(3)|1575(8)|1595(10)|1618(11)|1646(5)|1669(1)|1688(4)|1706(8)|1724(9)|1750(8)|1766(2)|1798(6)|1820(4)|1843(10)|1861(12)|1876(4)|1899(13)|1914(11)|1925(6)|1940(7)|1966(12)|1983(9)|2003(6)|2013(9)|2037(14)|2064(10)|2086(6)|2106(10)|2127(9)|2147(6)|2164(8)|2192(3)|2209(2)|2236(12)|2257(2)|2268(9)|2287(7)|2304(7)|2326(2)|2347(8)|2363(15)|2381(12)|2399(8)|2415(2)|2438(9) audiotrans Legit interview MOYEN: This is an unrehearsed interview with John "Eck" Rose for the University of Kentucky Libraries Kentucky Legislature Oral History Project. The interview was conducted on December 5, 2003 by Eric Moyen. [Pause in recording.] MOYEN: All right, I'm here with, uh, Mr. John "Eck" Rose for our second, uh, session, for our interview dealing with the Kentucky legislature. Uh, thanks for meeting with me again. ROSE: Thank you, my pleasure. MOYEN: And, uh, we, we left off at the end of Wallace Wilkinson's, uh, tenure as Governor. Um, and so we're just beginning--actually we didn't start at all with Brereton Jones. But I wanted to, uh, first start off just asking you, with Brereton Jones what difference in tone was there between Wallace Wilkinson and Brereton Jones entering and dealing with you as, um, Senate, was it still pro tem, or, or, or Senate-- ROSE: --oh-- MOYEN: --president at the time, leader of the Senate? ROSE: Yeah, I get, it changed from the, the title changed about that point some time. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I don't remember exactly. Uh, but, uh, of course, thy, they were two entirely different people. And, and, uh, uh, probably Jones came in with, uh, with, uh, better rapport with legislators than certainly Wilkinson did, because he came in completely as an outsider, where Jones had, uh, been Lieutenant Governor-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --had been presiding over the Senate. Uh, so, uh, he came in with, uh, probably more, uh, knowledge of the process, uh, certainly as the legislature's concerned. And, and probably, uh, with a closer relationship, uh, than, uh, than Wilkinson had. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: At the outset. MOYEN: Um-hm. When you look at the newspapers, typically it's, it's pretty easy to research at the end of each session, they kind of go through and tell you the important things. However, the end of this '92 session, BOPTROT dominates-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --everything. Do you recall anything that that overshadowed in terms of legislative succ-, successes during that first session when, when Jones was Governor? ROSE: Um-hm. As, as I recall, the BOPTROT thing, uh, started at the end of the '90 session, didn't it? And then, it carried over maybe into '92. I think Wilkinson was still there in, in, in '90 when, uh, when the first, uh, investigation started. MOYEN: Can you tell me a little bit about that, what, what you remember from all of that-- ROSE: --well, I, I just remember-- MOYEN: -- -------------(??)-- ROSE: --I just remember Wilkinson, uh, being Governor when that first started. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and, and, of course, uh, they were investigating, I, I assume him, because he appeared before a grand jury a time or two, and, and, uh, and certainly his nephew, but I, I think that began in '90. MOYEN: Okay. ROSE: But it carried over in, you know, it was like a two- or three-year deal before it was-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --finally, uh, put to rest. So, um, uh, I'm not real sure what your question is, uh. MOYEN: Uh, were there any other legislative, imp-, important pieces of legislation-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --that you can think of from that '92 session, uh, because Jones came in saying health care was his thing-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --and he wasn't able to get that together that quickly. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Were there, were there any pieces of landmark legislation or anything like that? ROSE: Not, not that I recall. Uh, you know, I've been gone, so-- MOYEN: --sure-- ROSE: --all of this has been so long. Uh, like eleven or twelve years ago. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: I don't remember the significant pieces of legislation during the '92 session. I know health care was certainly a contentious issue at that point. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But I, I don't remember others. MOYEN: Okay. Uh, let me ask you a little bit about, uh, BOPTROT. Was there, when stuff started coming out about what had been going on with some of the legislate-, legislators, and-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --the different, especially, um, with the, uh, horse industry, and-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --some of the things that were going on, you as a legislator, could you, could you look back and say to yourself, "Well, I wouldn't have noticed it at the time, but in hindsight, I could see where that may have been going on," or, or did it completely blindside you-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --that it was this in-depth, and, and that that much-- ROSE: --well, I, you know, I, I still, uh, have mixed feelings about how in-depth it was. I'm sure there were some people there that were doing some things that they shouldn't, but I, I would guess there's people there right today doing things that they shouldn't. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, it became a full-blown investigation, uh, and, and as such, uh, many people were, were implicated, and many people pled, uh, to crimes that, uh, as I say, that go on all the time. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And I, I, I would assume they're going on now. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, as, as far as there being wholesale, uh, selling of votes, and selling of influence, uh, uh, that was unprecedented, and, and, uh, never occurred before, and never has since, I, I don't believe that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I will say for the record, uh, I don't believe you could buy Don Blandford's vote for five thousand dollars. I don't believe you could buy his vote for fifty thousand dollars. I don't believe you could buy his vote for a hundred dollars. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I do not believe Don Blandford's vote was for sale. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Now, did, did Don Blandford and some of his aides, did they expect some perks of the office that, uh, maybe they shouldn't have? Possibly. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, as far as, as far as him selling his vote, I just don't believe that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I don't believe that. MOYEN: Um-hm. You mentioned last time, I believe it was off the tape, that you've served in both the public, political realm-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --and in the private business realm-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --and you feel like that the public realm is under so much more scrutiny that if various press agencies would go after the private realm-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --that they would find as much, or more, is-- ROSE: --well certainly, certainly. I, I, I really believe that. I've been in a lot of different businesses, and, and, uh, I was a public official for twenty-one years, and, and if, if business people, and, and other people were investigated to the extent that we investigate public officials, uh, there, there wouldn't be enough prisons to hold everybody. MOYEN: Um-hm. Um-hm. ROSE: But that, that's, maybe that, that's the way it should be. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Because they are the public officials are not just dealing with their money and their neighbor's money, or somebody doing business with them, they're dealing with the public's money. So, you know, you, it is at a higher level. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: And, and it's at a level where you have to be sure that people, uh, believe that there is not things going on that shouldn't go on. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Now, if you and I have a business dealing, and I do something unscrupulous, or whatever, uh, and, and lie to you, or whatever, or take some of your money, or do whatever, uh, to a large extent, that's between me and you. But if I do that as a public official, then I'm taking the people's money, and of course, you, you have to be held to a higher level. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, you know, you, you can, uh, any, any segment of the population is reflective of the population. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, you, you elect people to be legislators, or whatever, and, and there's some of those folks that cut corners. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, certainly with the, with all of the, uh, law enforcement people looking at public officials, and, and with the press looking at public officials, why, I think they, they come under a lot more scrutiny, and, and, and I say rightfully so-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --than, than the average, uh, person out here. But the, the, uh, the average person is who gets to be a public official. So if they're inclined to cut corners in business, in their personal life, then they might be inclined to cut corners when they get to be a public official. MOYEN: Um-hm. Did you feel like any of the press that the legis-, legislature received after the FBI investigation broke, and there were different convictions, was unfair in terms of generalizing Kentucky's General Assembly as a bunch of, you know-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --votes for sale-- ROSE: --yeah, I, I didn't-- MOYEN: --that's been expressed by certain legislators, but I didn't see anything with you quoted. ROSE: Yeah. I, uh, you know, as, as they say, I, uh, I just believe if you're a public official that you have to be ready to, to be subjected to that scrutiny. And, and, uh, when some of them fall short, why you're gonna, you're gonna get bad press. Uh, does the press, uh, sensationalize these kind of things? Of course. That's what sells papers. So they do that, and, and, uh, but you know, if you, if you make mistakes, why you have to pay the penalty, and I think the Kentucky General Assembly, uh, suffered for a while because of, of that, and, and, uh, but do I think that the press, uh, uh, unfairly characterized the General Assembly as a bunch of crooks? I, I doubt it. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I, I, I don't think that, uh, they did that. They, they played it for all it was worth. And, and, uh, but I, I doubt, I doubt that I would say that. MOYEN: Um-hm. Okay. Um, after the BOPTROT scandal, there was some ensuing ethics legislation, which some of your ideas played an important part of what actually came out. Some of the stuff about really prohibiting taking anything of value, and much over, you know, food and drinks, and issues over no more than 35 percent of your campaign money-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --or twenty-five hundred coming from that, did you, do you feel in hindsight like that was really able to bring the ethical reform that was needed? Or in what ways do you wish there could be more or less ethics legislation? Or governments, I guess I should say. ROSE: Well, those, those kind of things that we did, uh, are not gonna make, uh, people ethical. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: The legislation that was passed is not, is not gonna do that. What that did, I think, and, and, and it needed to be done at the time, what that did was keep legislators from being in a position, uh, to where they might cross over the line-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --or whatever. But, you know, none of that, uh, all, all the laws, uh, were on the, with those convictions there, if they were all true convictions and whatever, and these people all did what they pled guilty to, or, or were convicted of, uh, you know, that was already in place. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Has been and, and hopefully always will be. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, nothing we did with the ethics, uh, uh, legislation, uh, changed any of that. It, you still can commit a crime, or you can sell your vote, or you can do whatever, and, and you can pass every kind of law that you want to, and you're not gonna prohibit that from happening. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But I think some of what we did, uh, first of all, kept legislators, uh, from, uh, maybe made them more aware, uh, that, you know, you need to conduct yourself in a certain manner, you needed, uh, conduct your campaigns in a certain manner, you need to, uh, have your relationship with lobbying groups or special interest groups, uh, in a certain manner, those kind of things helped, and, and, uh, was helpful. And then secondly, I think, uh, I think it was very important to pass the legislation to help restore, uh, public confidence in the General Assembly. And I think that played a part in it. MOYEN: Um-hm. A number of legislators afterwards would say, and I mean, quote after quote, "too far," the ethics legislation has gone too far, the cup of coffees, or the meals, that that wasn't, uh, what really what the issue. What might be the issue is you're sitting in a meeting and there's a lobbyist over there looking at you who's, you know, giving you a donation for your campaign, and that's where the conflict of interest might be. Did you feel like the ethics legislation went too far in any respects? ROSE: Well, it, it didn't, no, I, I didn't think it went too far. It didn't change the way that, that, uh, I dealt with lobbyists, uh, either before, or after, or whatever. You know, I, I don't think that it went too far. I could care less, and always did care less, whether, whether I was entertained, or whether the meal was bought for me, or, or, uh, I could care, care less whether a lobbyist contributed to my campaign or whatever, you know. It, it didn't, it didn't bother me at all. Now, certainly I, I would say there, there were people that, uh, oh, maybe that these things did bother, or, or that, uh, they were, if they were invited, uh, to have dinner with a lobbying group, or a special interest group that, uh, maybe couldn't afford to buy their own meal, you know. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Maybe there's some, some problem with that. But it, for me personally, I, it, it didn't bother me. I didn't think it, it went too far. I think probably we, as far as going too far, uh, in what we passed, uh, the way we structured some of the, uh, some of the appointments, and those kind of things, and, uh, was, was not the right thing to do, and we came back and, and redid that. Uh, we had, uh, uh, we had constitutional officers, uh, appointing people to the legislative ethics commission. And, uh, and then there were at least- -I can't remember the exact details; I know they recommended people, or, or whatever, and, and, uh, I would get calls from these constitutional officers. Uh, and I'm not gonna get into who, what, when, or where, but they would call me as president of the Senate and tell me that they wanted so and so put on the legislative ethics commission, because they had been very helpful in their campaign, you know, or contributed money, or whatever. So, you know, and, and we changed that, and took some heat by doing that, uh, by making those changes. But it was, it was, uh, very political, the way we structured it at the outset. MOYEN: Um-hm. Okay. Let me ask you about, we're gonna get into health care. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: I understand a lot of things about the legislator, legislature that I, as I learned this. The health care issues seems to be one of the most convoluted, difficult to get your hands around problems. Um, not necessarily the legislation that's proposed, but all the problems that are there. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Jones, uh, had a Governor's commission on health care reform. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: You co-chaired that group. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: I don't know if you recall a whole lot about that. Or if you could tell me, as best as you remember, what the primary areas of concern were, as you all began to look at health care reform. What are the major issues here that needed or were the major issues that needed to be dealt with? ROSE: Well, the, the big issue in health care was, and is, how are you gonna pay for it? Jones's goal--and, and it was a very worthy goal--to have universal health care for everybody in Kentucky. And, you know, everybody would like that. But the question is, who's gonna pay for it? And, of course, he wanted to mandate that all businesses had to, had to furnish health care for all their employees. And, oh, you know, just, that's a great goal, but it just, many of the businesses in Kentucky are at a level, and the workers that work for those businesses are at a level to where that, they can't afford that. The business cannot afford to do that. It would shut them down. So, uh, that, that was the big problem, and still the big problem. And, uh, in the end, of course, we did not mandate that employers had to furnish health care, and tried to do a lot of, a lot of other things, and all of those things were worthy too, but many of them had been undone now, because when, when you start trying to impose conditions on insurance companies, or doctors, or other special interest groups within health care, then they don't necessarily have to be in Kentucky. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: They can go somewhere else and do business. And if it's not profitable to do business in Kentucky, then they won't do business in Kentucky. So, when we tried to, uh, do a lot of those things, they simply pulled out of the state and, and, uh, no longer off-, off-, uh, offered health care in Kentucky, and which defeated the whole purpose that we, uh, tried to accomplish. MOYEN: Could you tell me a little bit about the idea behind this five-member policy board that would regulate health insurance premiums? Once again, I think it's pretty understandable, hey, health insurance premiums are getting out of control, we need to regulate these. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: How would they, in essence, go about doing that and deciding what's too much, and also attempt to, at least at the time, before the legislation passes when you're looking at this, keep these companies in Kentucky? ROSE: Well, of course, the, the, this legislation, I guess, was drafted after the same concept that the public service commission, uh, operates under, and, and utilities in Kentucky have to go before the, have to go before the public service commission and, and request a, a rate increase or whatever, and it was, it was supposed to work under somewhat the same lines that, uh, that, uh, certain procedures, or certain things were, were, uh, were gonna have a certain cost in Kentucky. But again, when you try to, when you try to do that, uh, at a level and that's not profitable to them, why then they, they end up moving out. And, of course, most of them don't like, uh, the government regulation to start with. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You've got, uh, you've got forty-nine other states that you can operate in. Kentucky is just a very minor, uh, little state-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --for many of these major insurance companies. MOYEN: Um-hm. This would be just opinion, uh, but in your opinion, if Kentucky had been Texas or California, and passed the same legislation, would it have had a better effect, because companies would've said, "Hey, this is a, a big"-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --"big market"? ROSE: Oh, certainly they would've been less likely to, uh, to leave, uh, with a bigger market. But at the same time, if it's, if it's not profitable, if doing business is not profitable in California, wherever, they're not gonna stay for the, for the long-term. Uh, but certainly if, if we'd have had, uh, a, a bigger state, population-wise, uh, economically we might could've, could've, uh, you know, lasted longer in many respects. MOYEN: Um-hm. Could you tell me about some of the debates over the provider tax, the medical care providers, and I think it was just a 2 percent-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --tax that was issued on these medical providers. Did you or did others at the time really think that that would be such a big deal to some of these doctors and health care providers? ROSE: Um-hm. Oh, I, I think we knew it'd be a big deal. Um, of course, the reason for doing that was to take that money and then leverage it against federal money, and, and, uh, I don't, I forget what the match was at that time, probably 90-10 or something. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: We put up ten dollars and, and get ninety back. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, we could get that money from provider tax, and, and it, it still was a, it, it was, it, it kept, uh, a lot of rural hospitals, and rural doctors in business, uh, for a long time. Now, whether they were, whether it was, you know, just extending the life of something that was gonna die anyway, as, as it relates to rural hospitals, maybe that, maybe that was the case, but it certainly helped us, uh, to leverage, uh, they were, the monies from the provider tax helped to leverage a lot of federal dollars in Kentucky. So, uh, but yeah, any, any time you, any time you have a tax of any kind, and, and especially one that, on the surface looked as unfair as that did, you, you would expect to get a lot of opposition. MOYEN: Um-hm. Originally, uh, sometime in mid-March, 1984--or '94, excuse me--you predicted that Jones's health care, uh, bill would be approved by the Senate. And then it seems like it was gonna be a few votes short. Do you remember any of the discussions that went on? ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: The concerns that were there? ROSE: Well, I, I don't know that I predicted that that, in its entirety would-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --would pass. I, I think I said that we would pass health care legislation, which, uh, which we did. Uh, I can't remember all of the, uh, all of the points of contention there that, uh, we had with some Democratic senators, but, uh, I remember that we were a few vote, votes short, and, and, uh, we had to accommodate some of their ideas before we could pass anything. And then when, uh, when we as the Senate leaders agreed to incorporate some of their ideas into the health care bill to get, um, the votes necessary to pass it, why then Jones, uh, became very much against his own bill. You know, in fact tried to kill it there in the waning days of the session. And, and, uh, uh, which, you know, I, I still in, in retrospect think that, that with all the problems that we had in health care at that time. Of course, we still have a lot of problems with it. But I think just to make a, a step, uh, toward reform was the thing to do, and that, that was what we were trying to do as Senate leaders was-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --was to salvage something out of the legislation. MOYEN: Um-hm. Which, you did introduce amendments, made some key changes where there wouldn't be direct rate controls. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: There would be more insurance-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --plans to choose from. And were able to get the votes-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --necessary. Now, um, then, I believe it was April first, or the first couple days of April-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --what Walter Baker describes as, "bizarre and unbelievable events" there, at the end of that session with the health care legislation, where senators and representatives had worked so hard to get something. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: And then do you recall why Governor Jones did the about-face and then would eventually switch again? Or, or what were the politics behind those decisions? ROSE: Um-hm. Well, I, I think it was mainly what I alluded to there previously. I think, uh, he wanted the total package. He was still under the illusion that he could have universal health care for every Kentuckian. I think he was under the illusion that he could set the rates and, and all the things that was in his original bill. And, uh, he, he had not, uh, come to the political reality that that wasn't gonna happen. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Which, which we, leadership had. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, uh, I think he thought if he just, if he could kill what we were getting ready to do, if he could work against that, then somehow miraculously, uh, all this is gonna come back together again. Well, you know, we'd been dealing with that for several weeks. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And knowing the senators as I knew them, uh, I knew that wasn't gonna happen. So, that, I, I think he was just still under the illusion that he was gonna prevail, uh, the way he wanted to prevail. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Which is not uncommon for Governors. They, they, uh, they have people in their ear(??) every day telling them how great they are, and what all they can do, and whatever. And they get to believing that that's, that's what's gonna happen, and, and whatever they want to happen. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And that's not necessarily the case. MOYEN: Um-hm. You mentioned it, and at some point, the Governor essentially said those voting for the proposal were good people, and those voting against it were bad people, and, uh, you took some offense to that. And can you tell me how that may have strained relations? Or in the long term helped them, in the sense that they maintained this healthy division of the different-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --branches that were there? ROSE: Well, I just thought that was an unfortunate, uh, statement for him to make. Uh, you know, in America, uh, it's about being able to express your opinion, and, and be for what you want to be for, and be for whatever person in political office or candidate you want to be for, and just because you and I disagree, uh, doesn't make you a bad person. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, philosophically we don't, we don't agree. So, uh, I think, as I recall, it's been a long time, but as I recall, I, I made a statement, something like there, there are not bad people in the Senate because they are opposed to this health care bill. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But I, I think, um, I think that statement that he made, uh, probably helped in the long run of, uh, of, uh, passing something, because I think there were people, people there that, uh, felt like they were being pushed aside or characterized as, as being evil or bad, because they were against this. And, and I think my speech there helped to, helped to, uh, assure them that, uh, that, uh, you know, they were not outsiders. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: They were part of the process and, and whatever. So, I, I think probably that, uh, it's unfortunate that it happened, but I think in the end it was probably a positive thing. MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit, you mentioned that you felt like Governor Jones wanted everything in this health care bill. Do you recall what influence or how much, how important the budget was, in terms of his decision to kill the health care bill? Because it, it looked like at one point there at the end of the session that it was a political decision to try and kill the health care bill so as not to levy this tax-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --so that the budget wouldn't be balanced, and there would have to be a special session for the budget-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --which he didn't like. Do you-- ROSE: --well, I, you know, Eric, you'd, you'd have to ask him what was behind all of that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: That certainly is a scenario that, uh, is a logical one. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, he was wanting to spend a lot of money that we in the Senate uh, didn't think ought to be done, uh, for projects and, and those kind of things. And, and, uh, so he, he, he did not like the budget that we had, had there. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And I'm thinking, again, looking back, uh, some of the things that Democratic senators pointed out there in '94, as it relates to the budget, are, are very real today. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, they, they wanted to spend everything that we had, and eventually did spend everything we had, and more than we had. But at that point, we were trying to bring, uh, some common sense to the budget, and try to keep some of these monies there for a rainy day fund, and for things that we would spend, uh, if we were gonna spend in education instead of all these Capitol projects that we wanted to do. So, I, you know, I, again, I can't speak for Governor Jones. I don't know whether-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --that was part of the plan or not. But it, it, uh, from the outside it would look like it was. MOYEN: Um-hm. The budget, at the time, was called the "No Bricks" budget. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: At least that's how the press termed it. And legislators referred to it, because of the trying to reign in all these different-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --various projects, and golf courses. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: How hard is it to stop that stuff from getting into the budget? ROSE: Well, you have to have-- MOYEN: -- --------------(??)-- ROSE: --it's hard. You have to have, you have to have a, uh, a majority of the body, in that case, a state Senate, that, uh, had a similar philosophy. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and with some, uh, vision down the road. And, and we had that at that time. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, you know, I, the economy had, um, had been expanding for, uh, many years. I remember several times, uh, telling them that that's, that's not gonna continue to happen. You keep doing these bonds, and, and with this debt retirement that comes down the road, uh, for the next twenty years, and then you have a downturn in the economy, which has been very real for the last two or three years--which all of us knew at some point would happen--those bonds still have to be retired. You've got not as much growth as you had. So you end up with a big shortfall, and facing the prices that we have here in, in 2003--[telephone rings]- -so, uh, you know, but, but how hard is it to do--[telephone rings]--it, it has to be, you have to have, uh, enough votes--[telephone rings]-- that agree with that philosophy. And, and we had them at that time. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: We had them at that time. And it's--[telephone rings]--I think it's, uh, we've been well served if we'd kept, uh, that kind of philosophy there in state government. Uh, we wouldn't be facing the problems that we have today-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --uh, with money. We would, uh, tuition costs for people in higher education wouldn't continue to go up. A higher percentage of the, uh, tax dollars would be going into elementary and secondary education and higher education than's going in now. We, we have really, uh, in my judgment, we have really, uh, come way back in, in, uh, in, in funding things that are important. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But we've still got all those bonds that we stopped in '94, and, and, uh, and, uh, '96, uh, to a lesser extent. Uh, we have, we have those things that we're paying for now, and it's, it's coming back to haunt us. MOYEN: Um-hm. Let me ask you just in terms of evolution of your political career. You told me in the first interview you took the advice to sit in the back-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --don't introduce legislation, sit there and learn, keep your mouth shut, and then by the end of this '94 session, Jones says that the legislature had become an unruly team, and then the newspaper article itself said that this was directed at you, although he didn't-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --actually use your name. "So many people in high office get so eaten up with ego that it gets in the way of normal judgment decisions." And not that that is fair, whatever, uh, but how had you evolved politically, to going from someone in the back row to here at the top, and when you look at, in terms of the Senate, the people who are behind election reform bills, or ethics legislation, or health care, it's either you introduced it, or you've given the amendment to save it, how does that happen over time? What, what were you able to learn and do to become so influential in the legislation that was being passed? ROSE: Well, Eric, I, I don't know the answer to questions like that. But just, uh, let's just look at it as an outsider. You've got a Governor saying that a senator is more powerful than the Governor. I mean, that, that's the essence of what you just said. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: A senator cannot do that unless there is an absence of leadership in the Governor's office. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: There will be leaders. Somebody will lead the state at all times. Now, if, if a Governor is not leading the state then it will evolve someway. So, maybe, and, and I'm not sure I agree with, uh, that, that I was calling the shots. Any of those, I'm not sure I agree with any of that. But if I was-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --it's because that there was an absence of leadership. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: There was a void that somebody was gonna fill. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: If, if I was indeed that. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: Now, I don't know that I was that. But. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, you know, you, you, you, uh, do what you have to do, you do what you can do, and, and again, I was given much, uh, credit for doing things that, that, uh, I was just part of. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Not the person with all the ideas, whatever, but there, there were a group of state senators there. Uh, mostly Democratic, but several Republicans too, that shared a common vision. And, uh, you know, for a period of time, uh, there, and, of course, everything comes to an end, but for a period of time, we were, we were able to, uh, set policy for the state. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Now, was it we were trying to go against the Governor? Uh, whichever Governor it might have been? No. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, we, we saw an absence of leadership, and we tried, whether you're talking about education reform, or, or health care reform, or ethics, or solid waste, or whatever you're talking about, uh, we, we had the ideas, and we put them, put them together, because no one else was, was leading. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: We would've been just as happy to, to have had the Governor out front on those issues, and, and, and leading in those issues, but for the most part, uh, many times they were a hindrance instead of a help. But, uh, I, uh, answer your question, I, you know, I, I've never, I never did see myself as, uh, as a person that, that was doing all, or getting credit for all the things that, uh, you know, people talk about. On the other hand, I, I took a lot of--I might've told you this in the other interview--I, I took a lot of heat for people that, uh, uh, that had a certain policy or whatever, because they were in the majority, and I was president of the Senate, I got accused of some things or, or got credit for or a bad kind of credit for some things that, uh, really I didn't want to do either, you know. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But that's what part of, uh, of being the presiding officer is about. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You, wherever your group is going, you know, you have to be part of that. MOYEN: Um-hm. And I think you mentioned in the first interview, something to the extent of being leader in the Senate, and, and with this quote here, none of what you did could have been done without the rest of the Senate. ROSE: Absolutely not. Absolutely not. If, if, you know, if, if I were, if, if I were some kind of a king, and, and could, uh, blindly draw twenty-two or -three people in behind me to do things that they didn't want to do either, I mean, I would be a world threat. I could, I could be another Hitler or something, you know, and, and certainly I wasn't that. And, and certainly most of the things that we did, uh, were hashed out in the caucuses, and, and meeting with other senators. And, and, oh, if, uh, you know, if I was able to do everything that I wanted to do, I would've, I would've been with, uh, Jones. Wouldn't compromise with anybody, and, and, and the whole thing would've failed. But that's what, what I was able to do there in the last, uh, days of that session in dealing with health care. It was indicative of the, of what I'd done, uh, there as presiding officer for a long time. And that is to build, build relationships, build a consensus on issues, and, and go forward with it. MOYEN: Um-hm. [Pause in recording.] MOYEN: When you talk about leadership in the Senate, and, and what I was just mentioning to you off the tape--and this is conjecture as well-- but did you ever feel like or sense that maybe some of the pressure that would come from the Governor's office, whether it be Wilkinson or Jones or whomever, that it may have been an attempt to do things the way they had been done in Kentucky. Because what you said before, "Well, if I could've had twenty-two or twenty-three votes with me automatically on what I said," to some extent that was political reality for some of the Governors-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --early on, was it, was it not? ROSE: Um-hm. Yes, I, you know, again, they, they get elected and, and they feel like, uh, they have, uh, as Wilkinson said, he had a mandate to be Governor, and you know, I said, "Yes, you've got a mandate to be Governor, but I've got a mandate to be a state senator. And, and there's two branches of government here, uh, uh, you know, we will deal with ours, and you deal with yours." MOYEN: Right. ROSE: Uh, I think where, where the, you know, there's a lot being said about legislative independence and, and how that came about. Uh, but to me, it's, it's very simple and very basic. There came a time in Kentucky when a legislator did not have to rely on a Governor to get elected or reelected. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I think I told you in that first interview, uh, when I was elected the first time, I ran against a person who, who had the Governor by his side, all these ads were, his arm around him, saying, "Send this man back to help me," you know. So I came in with, with the attitude, and, and it, it was that way with many, many other people. I came in with the attitude that, uh, uh, you know, it didn't make any difference whether the Governor was for me or whether the Governor likes me or whatever. Uh, you know, I'm gonna do what I can to get along with him, but they are not a factor in, in me being here. They're not a factor in me staying. Uh, and, and, uh, I think I might've told you when Governor Brown, who I greatly admire, but, uh, he told me one time he would, uh, if I would vote for a certain thing, he would help me in my next election. And I told him, I said, "Well, Governor, I appreciate the thought, but, uh, the best thing you could do for me is just stay out of my election. But if you, regardless of how popular you are, uh, if you've got to get on one side or the other, be against me," because people do not want a Governor telling them who their legislator is gonna be. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So I, I think most of the Governors in, that I served with never did, uh, never did really grasp the fact that they could not transfer votes, uh, to members of the legislature, when it came time for the legislator's reelection. I, I think they felt like they could, uh, they could threaten to do this or that or whatever. And, and, uh, and, you know, and, and so they had a, had an unrealistic opinion of, of, of, uh, what they could do, as it relates to the legislature. MOYEN: Um-hm. Let me ask you about, uh, some of the commercials that were run, and the different pushes to oppose the health care legislation, or health care reform that eventually passed. Although you didn't comment on them, other senators, like Mike Moloney, and others, when these commercials were run, and they said, "If this stuff passes, your premiums are gonna go up," all these things are gonna happen, and although I couldn't find you saying it, others were saying, you know, "That's not true; this isn't gonna happen," and then it did. Did you expect that? Did you think it might happen? Was there any reason why you weren't saying, well, I couldn't find anywhere that you said-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --"That's not true." ROSE: No, not, not really. I, you know, I, I don't, I, I never did have any problem as long as somebody, uh, uh, and all this is conjecture, you know. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: It, it could've happened or it could not have happened; nobody could know going in. So I couldn't, I, I, as long as people don't say that so and so happened yesterday, when everybody knows that it did. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, didn't happen when they knows that it did, why then, which is a blatant lie, or whatever. But things like, you know, that's what, that's what a free country's about. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You got the money to buy the ads, uh, run them, as long as you're not libeling somebody, or, or making just totally untrue statements that everybody can document are untrue-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --why, I, you know, I didn't have any problem with them running whatever they wanted to run. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But they, they, certainly, uh, they were effective, and, and, uh, backed a lot of people off, and, uh, but, uh, you know, again I, I don't really, I never did have any problem with what, whatever ad somebody wanted to run. MOYEN: But I guess what I'm asking is, in essence-- ROSE: --did I, did I think that, that there could be the case that this could happen? MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Well, I, I think that, uh, you know, we, we all knew that this was, this hadn't been tested. Uh, we all knew that, uh, no one knew exactly what would happen. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, did I think that possibly they were, premiums were gonna double, that's the reason I didn't say anything? No. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: It just, it's just when I said before, uh, I, I usually don't take issue with somebody wanting to spend their money to, in a free country to say whatever they want to say. MOYEN: Um-hm. But in retrospect, I guess what I'm getting at is, were they right? Uh, would you consider, in retrospect, the health care reform that did pass under the Jones administration a failure? Did it not do what it was supposed to do? Did it not relieve-- ROSE: --well, I don't think it, it-- MOYEN: --problems(??)-- ROSE: --it, uh, I don't think it, uh, came to the, uh, in the end, to the expectations that, that some of us had for it, but no, I, I don't think it was a failure. I think, uh, I think there were things there that were tried and didn't work, that should have been tired. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And worked. At least, at least we, at least we know, uh, where some of those providers were coming from. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, and, and, uh, so, no, I don't consider it a failure. I think, I think that, uh, issues came out, and, and discussion was brought forth on, on many of those things that, that needed to be done. And, and regardless of the final outcome, uh, when many of the, many of the things that, uh, we tried to do were, were eventually undone, or many of the things that they said would happen did happen. Uh, I still think, uh, I still think it was positive to, to do what we did there. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: In fact, many of the, many of the things that we did, uh, have been mirrored by federal legislation, you know, portability, those kind of things-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --that you can take your insurance with you, and all those kind of things. MOYEN: If you were king, like we were talking about earlier, how would you go about solving the various health care issues that we still have almost ten years later from that point? What do you see as the solution to this seemingly endless, almost crisis of, of health care? ROSE: Well, I, I said at that time, and, and it's still true today, uh, and, and I don't know that you can solve these things from the state level. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I think it probably has to be from the federal level, but there are a lot of hard decisions out there that, that we as Americans are gonna have to, or somebody's gonna have to eventually make about, uh, oh, the extent of health care. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: How much of it, uh, and at what stage in your life. You know, most of this, most of the money on health care, uh, is spent, uh, at the end of a person's life, in many cases where there is no quality of life. In many cases where there is no hope of doing anything except extending life for another day or two, another month or two, and, and, uh, all those kinds of things are hard decisions to make. And, and I'm not saying I'm competent to make those, uh, uh, but eventually it's gonna have to happen. There, there is no end, there is no end to, with the technology that we have now, and there's no end to how long we're gonna be able to extend life. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, now, how do you define life? Is that still breathing, and your heart beating, or is that being able to, uh, know your family, or know your friends, uh, what, what constitutes that, uh, is, is like I'm talking about that decision will be made. But it's, it's gonna have to come from the federal level, or, or it could come from a consortium of, uh, uh, five or six major states to decide to do that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Then everybody would have to maybe be a player, but Kentucky is never gonna be able to unilaterally solve the problems in health care. MOYEN: Um-hm. Right. Do you think at the national level universal health care is coming? ROSE: Well, you, you have for the, you have, to a great extent, universal health care now. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, they cannot, they cannot deny to see you, uh, or, or admit you, or whatever-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --uh, in Kentucky, you know. If you go, you, you get, you get the health care. But it, but now the problem is that you have so many, uh, indigent people, and, and whatever, that are, that are getting health care. They're not paying, so then the premiums or the charges by the provider go up for the people that are paying, you know. So, uh, you would think that that being the case, there ought to be some way to, uh, to get this, if it's all being paid for eventually anyway, you'd think there ought to be some way to, to equalize it to where everybody would, would have, uh, have, uh, a card or something that they could get in and, and, uh, be admitted, uh, immediately, or, or show that they had insurance or whatever. But, uh, I, I'm not sure that that, uh, that the solutions in this area are, uh, are imminent, uh, that they're getting ready to happen. I think we'll probably go on as we've been going on for, for quite a while. If I were in a position to be able to, to try to work on that again, would I? Certainly I would. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, because I think it is one of the biggest challenges, uh, facing us. And not only here in Kentucky but nationwide. MOYEN: Um-hm. All right. Let me switch subjects here. Uh, at the beginning of 1995, you announced your candidacy for Governor. How did you come to that decision? What calculating went into that? ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: When did you start thinking it might happen, and-- ROSE: --oh, I, uh,-- MOYEN: --and when did you know and realize(??) For sure? ROSE: Yeah, I guess, uh, I guess I'd given it some thought for, for some time, and, and, uh, oh, certainly should have given it a lot more thought a lot earlier than I did. Uh, in retrospect, uh, what I tried to do was, was next to the impossible. Uh, never run for a statewide office before, I announced the last day of the filing deadline, which meant and, and all the other candidates, the two other major candidates, Babbage and Patton had already been running for two or three years. Both of them had run, I guess Patton had run in, uh, two statewide elections, and maybe Babbage too, uh, more than that, but, uh, and counting primaries and general elections. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But Patton was defeated for Lieutenant Governor by Jones, and then, and then won, so, uh, this was his, uh, third deal. Plus, more than that, they'd been, you know, they'd gone to every Democratic Party function, every tea, and everything in the Commonwealth for, you know, twelve, fifteen years. And, of course, I hadn't done any of that stuff. So, I guess in, in retrospect, uh, it was a little naive of me to think that I could get into the race, uh, uh, and run for four months and, and be elected Governor. Under different scenarios it, it might have worked. My plan, of course, was with the runoff primary that had been put in place, my, my goal was to come in second, which I, I lacked just a few votes doing that, and for Patton not to get 40 percent, which I think he got 42 or -3, so, and then to have a runoff, and, and I feel like if we, uh, could've forced a runoff, I feel like I would've been successful. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I think most people would, would agree that I would've been. So it, you know, we came, came close to what we hoped for, but it, uh, it just didn't happen. Why did I run? Because, uh, because, uh, as we sit here in the year 2003, I wanted this state to be a little different than it, uh, was in 1995. And, and, uh, it's just my humble opinion that, uh, we have regressed instead of progressed. Uh, I think if I'd been elected Governor, I, I think, uh, I don't think you would see the same Kentucky that you do today. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, some of the press has even now in the last year or two of the Patton administration start saying the same things that I said in '95, with regard to what we need to be spending our money on. What kind of jobs we need to be bringing into this state, and, and recruiting, and instead of all these minimum-wage jobs that all this money and tax money has been spent on. Uh, now they're, you hear some people saying, "Well, you know, we, we spent a lot of money for a lot of different things that we shouldn't have. That money should've went into education." Uh, we're sitting here with a, with the, facing a tax increase, or facing a downsize in government that, uh, if I'd been elected Governor, I don't think would've happened. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: These monies would not have been put in golf courses, and squandered all across the, the country, uh, all across the state, and things that now we don't even have the money to keep them operating. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, those are things that motivated me to, to do that. Uh, looking back at it, uh, I think it, as, as I say, it was naive, uh, of somebody who was supposed to have been, by some accounts politically astute to do, to make that attempt, but, uh, I'm still glad I did it. MOYEN: Um-hm. Uh, and I think you've pretty much answered this, but one of my underlying questions here, did you simply get into the race too late? ROSE: Oh yeah, there's no question. No question. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I had people every day tell me, if you'd, if you'd let it be known a year or two out, uh, there that you were gonna do this, you would've been elected Governor. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But yes, I got in it too late. But it, it was never, it was never, I, I didn't, as I used to use during that primary, and, and, uh, I think with some effectiveness, I didn't, all my life I had not awakened and went in to look in the mirror and saw a Governor standing there. That that had been Patton and Babbage's and Forgy's life all their life. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: The aspiration to be Governor. That, that, that had never occurred to me. It was not something that I had to do, or felt compelled to do, or felt like I was gonna be a failure if I didn't do it. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, as such, uh, where these people were making plans about how they were gonna get in the Governor's chair, I had never done any of that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So I, yeah, I definitely, most definitely got in it too late. MOYEN: Um, you mentioned that do you think that, were there times in '94 where you thought about announcing? ROSE: No. MOYEN: And decided not to? ROSE: No. Absolutely not. MOYEN: What was the, what was the game plan? Was, was the philosophy or idea behind announcing on the last possible day that so many people make up their mind at the end, and that's when the real campaigning and TV-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --did that? ROSE: Well, that's what we were hoping for. Uh, uh, again I, uh, I thought I could raise the money in a short period of time, which I did. I think I raised the, the, uh, $600,000 dollars, and back then the limit was $500 a person. I think I raised that in, I don't remember, but seemed like it was 78 days, or, but these were also days that the other candidates had pretty much had their money in, and they were out, uh, they were out campaigning, but the, the, uh, you know, I ran for Governor for four months, and didn't make it. A lot of folks in this state have run for Governor for thirty or twenty years or fifteen years and didn't make it. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, I didn't waste a lot of my time and energy-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --uh, doing that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Now, could I've been Governor if I'd, uh, got started a little earlier? Some folks think so, they think so. I, I, I have no idea. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But it was, uh, I did not, I never did, I never did feel compelled to run for Governor. Uh, I never did feel like that I wanted to travel all over this state, attending little old social functions, in order to be Governor for a period of four years, or eight years, or whatever. But that's what you have to take to, if that's what it takes to win for Governor, uh, then I would not be Governor, which I am not, and have not been. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, I, I wasn't willing to, to make that kind of, uh, kind of a sacrifice. And that, that's basically what you have to do-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --if you're, if you're gonna win. You have to, you have to, uh, it's not as much about ideas and philosophy and policy and those kind of things as it is about making these contacts, and building these relationships throughout the state, that when you get ready to run that you have those people. As I say, these other folks been doing that for a long, long time. MOYEN: Um-hm. Could you tell me a little bit about campaigning? Your four-month whirlwind-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --what was that like? Did you enjoy it? Or not really? Or? ROSE: Yeah, Eric, I, I, uh, I, I am really, uh, uh, different from most people, I guess. I, I, the whole time, the twenty-one years I was in politics, uh, I dreaded campaigns more than anybody. There was so many other things that I enjoy doing, uh, that I'd rather be doing, instead of campaigning. But on the other hand, once I get into those campaigns, uh, I, I really enjoy them. The challenges there, the, the press, uh, the strategy, uh, being put in, put in, uh, on the hotspot, those kind of things, I, I always relished that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I, I enjoyed that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But I'm like, uh, I guess, the expert swimmer that you have to push in water. Except I wasn't an expert campaigner, but I was, I could, I could swim. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, but I, I did not, there's other things I'd rather be doing. But to say, to say that I, uh, I didn't enjoy it, I did enjoy it. And, and not many people ever get the opportunity to run for Governor in this state, uh, uh, and raise money for seven-, seventy-eight days, and, and have enough money to spend a million dollars on, on camp-, on, uh, media, those kind of things, not many people have had that opportunity, and, and I'm thankful that I did. MOYEN: Um-hm. When you decided to run for Governor, you said things like more money for education, less, less tax breaks to attract industry, more money for rural water systems, less for golf courses that taxpayers end up subsidizing. Um, I, I'm not sure if you said it, or if the Herald-Leader simply summarized what you had said, that you wanted to solve problems rather than set lofty goals. Can you win an election telling people, "We're gonna think about things critically and solve problems as they come up," as opposed to promising all these things, I mean? ROSE: Well, evidently not, because I didn't--(Moyen laughs)--I didn't get elected. But, you know, I, I, uh, in, in my campaigns--[telephone rings]--and, and, and personally, I, I just have never believed-- [telephone rings]--in, in leading people down a path that you know, uh, you can't sustain--[telephone rings]. And, uh, so I, I think, I think they needed, uh--[telephone rings]--to hear those kind of things. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And I think, as we sit here in 2003, I've been vindicated. Now, a lot of other folks are saying the same thing. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know. But, but I, I never did get elected to any position, uh, in politics by promising things that I couldn't do. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and, uh, I wasn't gonna start as, as Governor. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Or as, as campaigning for Governor. I wasn't gonna be, gonna be part of that thing, uh, with doing it that way, and, and I'm glad I didn't. MOYEN: Um-hm. What about--let me jump ahead here just a little bit. Um, you supported Ernie Fletcher for Governor this time. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: He pledged to not raise taxes. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Something you wouldn't do, simply because you said, "I don't know." ROSE: Um-hm. Exactly. MOYEN: You know, I don't know what things are gonna look like. ROSE: Exactly. MOYEN: Um, not that you have to agree with someone-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --on every issue-- ROSE: --right-- MOYEN: --just to support them, but do you think that that was a wise move on Fletcher's part? And, and, and would you have done that differently today? ROSE: Well, what does, does wise mean? Does wise mean that it was wise in the extent that he got elected Governor? Then yes, I think it was. (Moyen laughs) I, I, I doubt, I doubt that, that anybody, uh, could get elected Governor with the, with the atmosphere that we have out here with the voters, with the philosophy that I had. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And that is that I don't know. The last thing, what I would say is the last thing I want to do is raise your taxes, but I am not smart enough, I don't know the future. Uh, I'm gonna, I'm going to raise taxes before I let, let, let the road get out here to where you can't drive down it, you know. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: If it, if it's either raise taxes, or, or and you can't go to your job, I will raise taxes and fix the road. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, but, you know, I, I doubt that, I doubt that, uh, I, I think you, I think you just have to almost unequivocally, uh, make the statement-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --that you're not gonna raise taxes in order to get elected. Now, of course what happens, uh, later on, uh, many or most of them have to do that. But, you, uh, a lot of voters don't want, uh, they, they want to believe that, that you can do all these things without raising taxes. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and that's what they want to believe, and if you don't, if you don't believe the same way, why you probably won't, won't get elected. But it was not important enough for me to make a anti-tax statement to be Governor. MOYEN: Um-hm. Did you sense, just in your own mind, the recession that we have had, and seem to be moving out of, was coming? ROSE: Yes. And, and I made those statements back in '94. Because, you know, if you study, uh, economics at all, and economic history, there is no such thing as a thirty-year period of sustained growth. There, there is, uh, growth, and then there's, uh, recession, and, uh, so I, I, I knew this was coming. Uh, it, it lasted, in fact it lasted a little longer than I thought it would, but, but, uh, you know, here we are, here we are hopefully coming out of it a, a little. But, uh, if, uh, Kentuckians could, uh, very well not be benefited by the growing economy, because we're gonna have to start paying, uh, a lot of this added income we're gonna have, uh, in, in the form of taxes to make up for the extravagant, uh, expenditures that we did, that we made that were over and above what we could sustain during the periods of good time. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, I, you know, my philosophy with government has always been pretty much like, uh, it has been on the farm or in businesses that I've been in, or whatever. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, you've got, you've got to look ahead and, and know that, uh, you better be , uh, if you're making, uh, substantial amount of money, then you better be putting some of that back in your business-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --or you better be putting some of it aside because it's not gonna always be, uh, rosy. MOYEN: Um-hm. Did you ever look at, or in, in the conferences that you went to with other southern legislators, did you ever look at other states and how they were, were doing things during this time? I guess I'm thinking of--this isn't in my notes, but I've just heard recently that New Mexico happens to be one of the few states who's, their state government is running wonderfully right now, even though all these other states are having-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --budget problems. Did you ever look at other states at the time and see this is how we should be doing this, or did you not even have to look at other states(??)? ROSE: Well, I guess one of the analogies that I always made, and, and I forgot, I forget the years that it was, but there was a time--it hasn't been too awful long ago, uh, probably in, in my lifetime--when Kentucky, North Carolina, and Tennessee had about the same population base. Had about the same per capita income, and all that(??). And, uh, North Carolina, to a great extent, uh, made investments in, in, uh, needed infrastructure, and, in, in, uh, research, and education, and, and their, their economic activity just boomed. And Tennessee to a lesser extent. And we're sitting here, oh, as well, if not better located than those other two states. We're sitting here with, uh, with the natural resources, probably far exceeding, I know, Tennessee-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --and maybe even North Carolina. And, and we're, you know, we're way at the bottom of the totem pole-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --when you compare us to those two states. Now what, what is the difference? The difference is in the commitment that the people made, the leaders in those states made. And, and we have never, we have never had that commitment. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: We're always , uh, we're always, instead of rural water, or instead of, uh, instead of economic incentives to bring in high-paying jobs, we're trying to bring in some kind of a minimum-wage job, or we're trying to build a golf course, or we're cutting back on education and, and funding, uh, other things, you know. And, and, and that, that was my vision; that, that was what I wanted to do, uh, in the last eight years, and, and, uh, uh, you know, of course it didn't happen, but, uh, as it relates, did I look and see how other states were, were operating, uh, to that extent, I looked at states around us and, and tried to see what they did that we didn't do. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, of course, it's very evident where they are and where we are. MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm. One of your big pushes in your campaign stressed adult education. And then, uh, when Patton was elected, eventually he wrested control of the community college system from U.K. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: And I guess it's KCTCS now. Do you think that that is a positive reform? ROSE: Oh, I don't know that it, that it, uh, made a great deal of difference. Uh, in fact, I have, uh, with the higher education reform that Patton did there, there was some good things done, but the good things done were mainly infusion of, of money and, and various things. And, and, uh, of course that needed to be done anyway, but we have, because, uh, of all the other ways we've wasted money, why we have not kept that funding up, uh, in many other aspects of higher education, but I, I don't know that it, uh, that it made any big difference about who that was assigned to or whatever. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, I think, I, I, and, and I think really what was behind that, and I'm sure if Patton were sitting here, he would disagree violently, but I think what was behind that was, um, was to lessen the influence of the University of Kentucky. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I just firmly believe that; will always believe that. And, and certainly it did do that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, uh, I just hope that, uh, both the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville can, can go on and both become great universities. And I hope we haven't, uh, we haven't taken a university that, that I think was making great progress, and, and relegated them to mediocrity, and, and, uh, and maybe just enhanced the other one just a little bit. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Those, those things will, you know, in the future will come down. But I, I can assure you that, uh, that if the goal was, I think the goal was to make U.K. a Top Twenty University, uh, if we keep, if we keep going the way we have in the last, uh, eight years, that certainly is never gonna happen. MOYEN: Right. Right. ROSE: That's never gonna happen, because we have not, uh, made the commitment to do that. MOYEN: Um-hm. You had mentioned North Carolina earlier. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: North Carolina has the UNC system; all these different universities are under the UNC system. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: And it is understood that UNC Chapel Hill is the flagship university, and by helping UNC Chapel Hill, they also help themselves to a large extent. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Is that cooperation, do you think that's ever gonna be possible in Kentucky? To allow western Kentucky, where Murray might be, or Western Kentucky University, or Morehead State, or whatever to get to a place where they understand that helping the flagship university-- ROSE: --um-hm-- ROSE: --helps the regionals as well? ROSE: Not, not under the present, uh, set up. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And as I say, that was the problem I had, uh, with the higher education reform is that just the opposite of that happened. We lessened the influence in the University of Kentucky. And were trying, I suppose, to raise, uh, the regionals, or trying to raise the U of L to the point to where they were, uh, more competitive, or whatever. I don't, I don't know what the philosophy was. But what you've described in North Carolina is, uh, is basically what you had with the community college system at U. K. Because you had that influence throughout the state. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: All these, uh, satellite campuses, uh, throughout the state, and, and now they're no longer part of U.K. And, and, uh, so I think what we, what happened in that case went totally against that. But no, I, I see just the opposite happening. I see, I see more, uh, more infighting because, uh, because U.K., I think, uh, uh, took a, took a slap in that reform that, uh, you're no, we want you to be in the Top Twenty in the nation, but you're no longer , uh, you're no longer the major influence within the state and higher education. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I mean that's the way I see it. I'm sure there are many others, and as I say, if Patton were sitting here, he would, he would disagree, I'm sure, very much, but, uh, that's my opinion. MOYEN: In '96 when Patton is Governor, and presiding over his first session, you stated that he had a better understanding of the roles of government, and that if he understood that, and didn't take it personally, that that would go a long way in helping this state. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Did you feel like that held up through the rest of your tenure in the Senate? Or did that break down? And if so, when? ROSE: Um-hm. I, I, I don't know. Patton and I never had any major confrontations, uh, when I was president of the Senate, uh, and he was Governor, I was still president, uh, there in '96, and of course in, in '97 was when the coup with the Republicans, uh, took place, and, uh, but we, we didn't have any major problems in, in '96. There was a, a little old, some contention there a time or two where he told me he was, was gonna do so and so, or wasn't gonna do so and so, and I had to go down and remind him of what he said, but other than that, uh, uh, there wasn't much. I think he squandered, uh, a lot of, uh, opportunity early on, when to get some things done, maybe, and he didn't, and he, he concentrated on some things, uh, like workers' compensation and reform there that then he tried to come back, and I guess, uh, did undo much of what he did. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, so that was a squandered, uh, opportunity. And, uh, of course, passed the prevailing wage law, which, which in my judgment's cost tax payers millions upon millions of dollars. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, uh, unnecessarily spent. But I, I don't, uh, uh, I, I think he had an understanding. But again, uh, uh, I, I guess through, through the next period of years there, I, I really don't know, uh, of anything major that they did. I don't know what, I think Patton was wanting to run for the U. S. Senate, and, uh, they were mainly, they had some money, and they were spending it. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: About all that I know happened. MOYEN: In '96 there was an over three hundred million surplus, which kind of seems baffling today. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Uh, how, how does the politics of the budget change when you have a surplus? When finally gloom and doom, Mike Moloney and Joe Clark can't-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --you just can't say things aren't going well anymore. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Things are tight. There is this money. How would you describe the difference in the budget-making process? Or is there really a difference? ROSE: Oh, there, there's certainly a difference. Any time there's a surplus, uh, why then they're all trying to grab the money, legislators are, and, and once that--and it relates back to a question you asked, asked before--how hard it is, how hard is it to put a budget together without projects? Well, uh, it's probably easier to put it together without a project than it is to put it together with projects, because there's no end to what they want. And they see another one getting something, and they want something to counteract that, plus something to up them one, and, and it, it just, it's just like a feeding frenzy. And, and, uh, I don't, I don't remember exactly how that, what happened to that surplus. I think a lot of that was retained at that point. I don't think they spent all, the big spend was in '98 when, uh, Bailey became, uh, chairman of appropriations in, in, uh, in the Senate, and, uh, and of course, you had the House representative, which is always pretty liberal with regard to spending, that's when the money left the state. MOYEN: Um-hm, um-hm. ROSE: Or stayed in the state, but was distributed from-- MOYEN: --right-- ROSE: --from Frankfort out. MOYEN: Right. Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, that's when the money was spent. MOYEN: Um-hm. Let's talk a little bit about how, how we got to that place, the coup that you'd-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --mentioned briefly. When did you know, uh, there at the end of '96 and '97 that things were amiss, and that this was a, a possibility that you were going to get ousted? ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: When did-- ROSE: --oh, I think it was, it was later on. Of course, what they were, they were trying to, uh, Bailey and, uh, Saunders, and another one or two, uh, Blevins, uh, Blevins, they were trying to get the votes, uh, in the Democratic caucus, and of course they, they were not getting anywhere with that. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I mean, absolutely nowhere. Uh, and then, of course, uh, when , when Charlie Berger, which I've alluded too before in our conversations, who was, in my judgment, a great senator, when, when he was defeated, and when, uh, Kelsey Friend was defeated, uh, which had been part of this, uh, what I would refer to as progressive leadership in the Senate, uh, as far as setting policy, and, and being, uh, just, uh, real soldiers in, in, uh, in what the Senate, the Democratic Senate was at that time, when they were defeated, uh-- MOYEN: -- -----------(??)-- ROSE: --that started sending up some flags-- MOYEN: --let me interrupt. Had, had Joe Wright retired by this time --------------(??)? ROSE: Yeah, Joe, Joe, uh, retired in '92. MOYEN: That, that much earlier. ROSE: Yeah. MOYEN: Okay. All right. ROSE: Ninety--I think his last session, uh, I know it was '92; could've been '90. Yeah, he, he, that was his last session, I think. MOYEN: Okay. Okay. ROSE: Yeah, but these, uh, these people, when, when they were defeated in the primary, why, then I knew that, uh, that, uh, there were some, uh, chips in the armor there that, uh, could result in that. And, and of course, at, at that point, uh, I think Moloney decided not to run again. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, uh, and the appropriations and revenue committee, of course, was, was coming open. Uh, and you know, there, there, like with Saunders was pushing the abortion bills. Uh, he was, even as a Democratic senator he was, he was in the caucus there all the time, uh, accusing me, and you know I don't know whether I should get all the credit or not of, of killing those, uh, pro-life bills or not, but he was , he had his agenda. Bailey had his agenda that he wanted to be chairman of A&R. And, uh, and, uh, Blevins, uh, you know, who knows where he was coming from, but he, he, uh, in the end went with them. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, but, they, they were, it was, it was a personal thing with them, and as far as I'm concerned, that they wanted things that if I'd have given them, I could've been reelected president of the Senate. If I had said, uh, "Bailey, you're, you're gonna be A&R chairman," that, that would've been the end of it. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, the majority of the senators there, and the ones in leadership particularly, uh, didn't think he deserved to be chairman of A&R. So that was a decision that was made, uh, that, uh, he was not promised that. If I'd have told Larry Saunders, uh, "From now on, all the bills, whether they're unconstitutional, or whether , whether they're right, wrong, or indifferent, all these pro-life bills that you're proposing are gonna become law," uh, he would've been fine. So, they couldn't get what they wanted personally, so they saw a way to do it by, uh, getting with the Republicans, and, and, uh, and, oh, forming a coalition there that was the majority of the Senate. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I was approached, uh, by many, many times by Republicans that said, you know, they promised us all this stuff if we will go with them, uh, give us something. Give us some committee chairmanship. Oh, give us some co-chairmanships. Whatever, you know. And, you know, maybe some folks should(??) say, "Well, you should have done that, Rose." Or, "You should have, uh, you should've let Bailey be A&R chairman," or, "You should've, they're gonna be struck down by the courts anyway, uh, let them pass all these unconstitutional pro-life bills. All the state's gonna be out is a hundred thousand or two hundred thousand or half a million defending them, and, uh, that's all it amounts to, let them have that." MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, but that, that's just not my make-up. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, if I have to compromise my integrity to be president of the Senate, or to be Governor, I don't want to be president of the Senate, I don't want to be Governor. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, if I have to sell out a person that is deserving of being A&R chairman, if I have to push them aside to let somebody that is trying to leverage the rest of us or threaten us to have that position, uh, then I'm just ready to let them have it, you know. So that was a decision that was made. And, and, uh, oh, you know, I knew at the end there it was gonna happen, but I still was not, uh, I was not willing to compromise my integrity by, by, uh, giving a minority party, uh, positions that they didn't deserve. How many Democratic committee chairman you got now, since the Republicans are in control? None. You know, whoever, whoever has the most numbers is the one that's supposed to, supposed to-- [Pause in recording.] ROSE: Of course, you know, the Republicans, uh, did exactly what they should've done. They had, they, in this coup, they, uh, they gained a lot. In fact, I think any historian or any objective person that wants to look back at it, uh, would have to agree that in 1997 is when the Republicans took control of the state Senate, with this crew, with this coup. Uh, and, you know, yes, Bailey and Blevins, and Saunders, and, uh, uh, Freeman, and, uh, I can't even remember the other one. That, uh, lawyer from Pikeville. But, uh, uh, they got some things out of it, uh, personally, for a while, but they, they turned the Democratic Senate over to the Republicans. Now, you, you say, "Well, there, there's still more Democrats in the Senate, uh, why didn't they get behind Bailey or Saunders or whatever?" And here's the catch to that. It's no big deal with me. I mean, I was at a point in my career where I was ready to quit anyway. But when Bailey, uh, got to be chairman of A&R, he knocked a Democratic senator out of being that, who the majority of the Democrats felt ought to have been chairman of A&R. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: When, when, uh, Bob Leeper, who was in line to be president pro tem of the Senate, he was gonna win that race. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And when they did the coup, he's a nobody in the Democratic Party. Dan Seum was gonna be chairman of the transportation committee. When the Democrats did that and gave the chairmanships to the Republicans and whatever, Dan Seum was a nobody in the Democratic Party. Now, when, when your fellow Democrats, even though the majority of them in the Senate wanted them to have those positions, when two or three or four or five decide to knock you out of that, and you're no longer in the loop in the Democratic Party, and never gonna be in the loop in the Democratic Party again, what's, what's the natural reaction? Well, if I'm an outsider, and they have already, with using the Republicans, put me as an outsider, then I will join the Republican Party. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And become a player again. And that's exactly what they did. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and I don't blame them a bit. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I wouldn't do that, because I'd already had, you know, as I say, I'd been chairman of committees, uh, leadership, whatever. It wasn't that important to me. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I wasn't gonna do that. But I can see, I can see where Bob Leeper came from, I can see where Dan Seum came from, and I don't blame them a bit for doing what they did, and, and they're both now influential members of the Republican Party, and being reelected under Republican banner. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, effectively, in 1997, when, when the coup was done, not that it was any big deal with me, because it wasn't. Uh, uh, but it, it, it, it gave the Republicans control of the State Senate, and they have continued to, to build upon that. MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit about the day that happened? And I don't understand completely the walkout and how things ensued that day in the Senate when you actually did lose control. ROSE: Well, what, what is, what is customarily done, uh, uh, had been ever since I'd been there, and I guess always been there. On the first day of the session, then the two parties decide who their leaders are gonna be. Republicans go into a caucus. And, and they, at that time, they were in the minority; they would pick a minority leader, a minority whip, and minority caucus chairman. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, the Democrats were the majority party, and, and, of course, the presiding officer, the president of the Senate and the president pro tem had always came from the majority party. So they would go in and pick a nominee for president of the Senate, and pick a nominee for president pro tem of the Senate, and of course that had to be voted on by the whole Senate, but that was, it was a foregone conclusion who was gonna win, as long as everybody stayed loyal to their party. MOYEN: Right. ROSE: Uh, and then, of course, they would pick the majority leader, majority whip, and majority caucus chairman. So, uh, we, and of course, I had gotten word that they were not, that these five were not gonna come to the caucus. But, uh, that being the procedure, and I wanted it, uh, I wanted it to be known that they weren't coming. So we, we, uh, adjourned, we adjourned, uh, recessed rather, recessed for the purpose of, of picking, uh, leadership. And, of course, those five people, uh, didn't come into the Democratic caucus. They stayed on the floor, and the Republicans stayed on the floor, and they convened the Senate back again, and, uh, and, uh, elected Larry Saunders president of the Senate, and I think Walter Blevins president pro tem, and, and, uh, oh. And, uh, so it, it, and of course, we in the Democratic caucus went on and, and elected, uh, our caucus, or party people, the whip and leader and, and the caucus chairman in there, that they, they elected the president and a president pro tem. Uh, you know, they had, oh, Saunders and, and, uh, Bailey, what'd they last, a year or something? Uh, what are they now? They're nothing, but they had their day in the sun, I guess. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, uh, they're nothing, and, and they're not gonna be anything the rest of their political career, because they're not gonna be, ever be back in the majority party again. Uh, the Republicans, I think, what they've got twenty-three of them now? Or maybe it's twenty-five. I don't know. But a big majority. So, uh, but that's basically what happened. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: They, they, while we were in caucus, they convened the Senate. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: What, can they do, could they do that constitutionally? Uh, you know, the press was coming to me, "Are you gonna challenge this?" Or, or whatever, and, and, uh, you know, the outcome would've been the same in the end anyway, unless I'd want to capitulate and go back and, and give Bailey chairman of A&R, which, uh, I'm just not, again, gonna be leveraged that way. MOYEN: Um-hm. So, in some sense, like you said, that really was the beginning of Republican control. ROSE: It was. At, at, from that point on-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --they, they controlled the, the Senate; there was no question about it. Of course, some folks think that Patton was, uh, at least, uh, oh, acquiesced to all this. I have no idea whether he did or not. Only, only he would, he would know. But, uh, uh, if he, if he did, uh, it certainly backfired on him-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --because, uh, that was the end of, uh, that was the end of his effective, uh, leadership too, as far as state was concerned. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Of course, from that point on, he had to deal with the David Williams, and the Dan Kelly of the world, and, and, uh, their philosophies are not, are not the same. And, and it, uh, it totally changed the House of Representatives also, because they no longer were, were, uh, the players that they used to be. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: When, when, when, uh, you know, we, we may have stopped some things they wanted, or, or, or they may have not gotten everything the House wanted, uh, when I was president of the Senate, but at least they had an audience, and at least they had a person that could compromise and work with them. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, uh, so that, that ended too, at that point. MOYEN: Um-hm. Do you think that some of the things that you've talked about, some of the, just the fiscal responsibility that you wanted, some of the other reforms that you wanted, will be better served, those ideals will be better served with an actual two-party system in Kentucky that is really functioning where you have branches that are divided? That, will, will they, do you believe that they'll actually be, I don't know if the term is watchdog enough over each other where that'll happen, or do you really think that that's not a good, that we don't have a good setup-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --currently? ROSE: Oh, I, I don't know whether that, that would play a major role in, in, that if, uh, you know, there's a lot of Republicans that like to, that are, they, they preach, uh, fiscal conservatism, but, uh, they don't exhibit it very often. They're, they're, they-- MOYEN: --okay, continue. ROSE: They, uh, they like to spend money, and, and, uh, they like pork, and, and, uh, they like to talk about, uh, about how they're against this big spending and whatever, but, uh, I read an article, uh, in the paper today, on Bush, who basically I, I think done a decent job as, as President, but it's pointing out that, uh, been a big increase in spending since, since he's been President. So, I, I don't know, I don't know that it has that much to do with parties, uh, I think it has to do with, uh, with individuals. And, and, uh, I don't see, uh, I, I don't see there, you know, being a big change regardless of which party is in control. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: I think it comes from individuals, and, and groups of people. MOYEN: Um-hm. Was it shortly after this coup that you made up your mind that you wouldn't be in the Senate much longer? ROSE: Yeah, I, I made that decision, uh, at that point. Uh, you know, I , I, uh, I wasn't , uh, I'd been at a level there for a long time where , where I didn't feel very comfortable, uh. Just being an outsider, whatever, which is what I was, and so I, I made the decision. And probably would've made the decision anyway. When, when I lost for Governor, I'd made the decision that, that I would not run again. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: If they just waited another year or two, why they could have, if they thought I was the problem, uh, as president of the Senate, if Bailey and his group--of course Bailey got defeated shortly after that too--but if they'd waited a, just a short time, why they could've, uh, they could've, uh, maybe did what they wanted to do as, as Democrats. But I, I had , uh, I'd stayed in the Senate a lot longer than I intended to when I went there, and then when I lost for Governor, as I say, I decided that I wasn't gonna run again for the State Senate. Of course made an attempt to be elected to Congress and came a little bit short of, uh, winning the Democratic primary, so that was the end of my political career. MOYEN: Um-hm. Let's talk about that race a little bit. ROSE: Um-hm. MOYEN: Why did you decide to get involved in that, in the Sixth District House race? ROSE: Oh, I, I don't know, that's , uh, that's something I didn't , uh, again, like with the Governors thing, it wasn't an aspiration of mine to, to been a Congress person. But I thought that was, uh, that was a place that I could, I could be effective, uh, demonstrated, uh, there in the State Senate that, uh, the role of the legislator, I think, uh, was one I could fill, and, and, uh, so I decided, uh, to make that attempt. MOYEN: And, and no runoff in that election, right? ROSE: Right. Right. Right. And that, you know, that, that was, uh, that was certainly set up. Uh, and Lord only knows how these things come about in the voters' minds, but that was set up, uh, to where I should've been a, should've been a lock in that primary. And would've been, had, uh, Issacs gotten any votes in Fayette County whatsoever. I mean, Scorsone just beat the life out of her there. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So she, she was not a factor. So I didn't, and of course, with two, two people from Fayette County, outsiders weren't gonna get any votes, myself or Jonathan Miller, or Bobby Russell, uh, we weren't gonna get any votes in Fayette County, but Scorsone just, uh, swamped Fayette County, and, and she didn't get any votes hardly at all. And then, and then, uh, four years later, some way another is elected mayor of Fayette County, so now you figure that out. (Moyen laughs) I don't know. But that's, I, I don't remember what Scorsone beat me by. Was, uh, 1500 or something like that, or? MOYEN: Twenty-four to twenty-one percent, couldn't be-- ROSE: --yeah-- MOYEN: --couldn't be much-- ROSE: --it was, it was very, very small amount, but if, uh, and I carried, I, I've forgotten now, how many counties, like sixteen counties in it-- MOYEN: --more than anyone else(??)-- ROSE: --I carried maybe thirteen of them, or twelve of them, or something like that, and still lost the election because of that overwhelming vote there in Fayette County. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But, oh, I don't know, I might've had a little better shot against Fletcher in, in the, uh, in the fall, but, uh, than Scorsone did, I'm sure I would have. But, um, I think at that point, uh, uh, the Republican Party was starting to surge here in Kentucky, and, and, uh, I don't, I don't know, you know, probably in retrospect, it's probably a blessing I didn't win the primary, because I'd probably been running , running for another, uh, five or six, seven months, and, and with no chance of winning against Fletcher, because, I mean, he beat Scorsone substantially, and then Baesler came back and tried to run against him, and lost even worse than, than, uh, than Scorsone had. And it was at that point that I became convinced that if Fletcher ran for Governor, he was gonna be elected Governor. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And of course he has been. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: What did you, when you decided to get out of politics, what did you do personally? Did you just go back to the farm? When did you, when did you -------------(??)-----------? ROSE: Well, I, I've got my auction business really hopping again there in '99. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And, and, uh, just sold, uh, a lot of property, and, and, uh, of course, doing some farming too. But, uh, oh, I, I just went back to doing what, uh, Eck Rose is about, and that's farming and auctions and business. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, this politics was a derailment for a period of years, but I was just as, just as contented and happy, and, and more contented and happy than I'd been in years, and still am. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, I, I don't, I don't miss the political, uh, arena at all. Oh, in fact, uh, I've made this statement before; I don't think I told you on the other interview, but if, uh, unless somebody comes around, like you, wanting to do an interview, or unless somebody comes by that, uh, I was active with politically, uh, I never even think about, uh, that I was ever in the State Senate. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Just like closing the book, and go on with your life, and, and that's it. Uh, so I just went back to doing the things that I wanted to do, and then, of course in, uh, wasn't but, uh, let's see, I got out at the end of '98, and the year 2000, my wife's, uh, father, uh, got to where his health wasn't so good, so we came to Ashland and started, uh, helping to run the dealership, uh, the family dealership. So, I'm doing that today also. Doing, spent more time at that, than I am the auctioning and farming. MOYEN: Um-hm. Um, let's move up to today and, and ask you some just general-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --questions. What would you attribute Republican growth in Kentucky to? Why, what troubles are Democrats having, that Republicans are making the inroads that they are currently in the state? ROSE: Well, I, I think it's basically because the average Kentuckian can no longer identify, uh, with Democrats in this state. Uh, they can't identify with them on the issues, they certainly can't identify with them as it relates to national Democratic issues, and philosophies and whatever. And, and it just, uh, we've just gotten away from, uh, from what the people here in Kentucky, and throughout the South, this is not something that's, uh, that's just common to Kentucky. Uh, gun issues, you know, probably 75-80 percent of the people in Kentucky believe that you ought to have, uh, the right to own a gun, not to have it registered. Oh, and then you've got, they pick up the paper, uh, and they read where, where some, uh, Democratic senator from New York, or wherever, is, is proposing to take their guns away. So it's just a multitude of issues like that to where, uh, and it filters down from the national level, uh, where, where that, uh, people in Kentucky just no longer identify with the Democratic Party. Now, they still, a lot of them are still registered Democrats. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: But they, uh, when it comes time, and they do that mainly because there're so many local races that they want to be part of, at the primary level, but they, they're not gonna vote for a Democrat for Governor, they're not gonna vote for one for U.S. Senate, not gonna vote for one for Congress. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So, uh, it's just that, that evolvement is what I've seen in the last fifteen or twenty years, and I'm not sure when it'll, when it'll ever change again. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: It won't until the Democratic Party, uh, uh, redefines itself and gets back in, in, if they want to be strong in the South, and, and, uh, and strong in the Midwest, or whatever, then, then the policies that they've got are just never gonna take. MOYEN: Um-hm. Can you tell me a little bit about your decision to support Ernie Fletcher for the gubernatorial race this year? ROSE: Yes. You know, I, I've known Ernie since the health care bill that we talked about early there, and, and I was impressed with him at that time. And, and, uh, oh, we, we just share, I, I share more, uh, of the same philosophy with Ernie Fletcher than I share philosophy with Ben Chandler. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, I, I believe, uh, I believe you ought to keep, uh, taxes as low as possible. I believe Fletcher believes that more than, than Chandler. Uh, Chandler is very pro-labor; he believes that, that, uh, public employees ought to be unionized. I, I don't believe in that, uh, believe in that at all. Uh, you know, just lots of issues like that, uh, that, uh, I'm just more in tune with Fletcher than I, than I was Chandler. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Being, being a person that is no longer interested in, in running for, uh, office, why, then I felt like I could give, uh, Fletcher money. And of course that was, that was the extent. I wasn't out here beating on doors-- MOYEN: --right-- ROSE: --and whatever, because I've got, I've got all I can say grace over with the businesses that I have to look after. But I did, uh, I did give, uh, Fletcher a contribution. MOYEN: He's in a pretty tight spot, financially-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --taking over. How would you, in a nutshell--you're pretty good at simplifying complex issues--how would you, in a nutshell, suggest that he, uh, operate the budget? Or propose a budget that's gonna help the state, and is it essentially the same things that you were saying in-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --in '95? ROSE: Yeah, the, the things, those things would, is what needed to be done for the long term. Now, for the short term, he's got to, he's got to do some, some things, maybe painful, uh, maybe innovative, uh, to get him through the short term. But, uh, oh, I, I, you know, I, I just feel like he'll be able to do that. I don't think the problems are, uh, ones that can't be overcome. Uh, and again, I don't want to be part of solving those problems. But, but, uh, I, I would, you know, if I were him, I would just look at every aspect of the budget, where all the monies are going, and there's some things that you can say, "Well, we've got too many employees, or we'll cut this or that," but you have to also understand that many of the dollars that, uh, are spent here in Kentucky pass through with the federal government. Now, if you've got, let's say, for instance, you've got $100 million coming in for this program, and $10 million of it is state money, and $90 million of it is federal money, you can't cut the $10 million out, because if you do, you lose the $90 million. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: So he's got all those things that he has to, he has to worry about. But, I, you know, I just feel, uh, I feel like he will, he will do a good job at it. MOYEN: Um-hm. Looking back on your time in the Senate, what would you consider your, the most difficult issues on which you had to vote? The most difficult bills where, most of the time, you can say, "I know I believe this, I feel this way,"-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --but what were issues where you really understood, or, or the other side, where you ended up voting, or you yourself were divided and weren't sure. Can you think of any really difficult -----------(??)? ROSE: Oh, I think we talked about it before. I, I, I don't know that they were difficult, because, oh, I made the decision I wanted to make, uh, given all the information that I had. But I think the, the, as you alluded to, or, to you asked a question on the health care bill, uh, I think, uh, I think the support that I showed for that bill exhibited there, in trying to loan a, uh, line up votes, I think was, was, uh, the one issue where I was considered a player that I was the most unsure of the outcome. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: You know, there was no question in my mind, uh, with education reform that we were not going to, no question that we weren't gonna better education in Kentucky-- MOYEN: --um-hm, um-hm-- ROSE: --you know, if we stayed the course or whatever. So, I, I guess that, that, that issue was, was the one that I was most unsure of and most torn between, because we were, we were, uh, charting some, uh, uh, courses here that, uh, had not been proven anywhere in the, in the United States, in any state, and, and, uh, uh, it could work, it may not work, or whatever. But I guess that, it would be in health care. MOYEN: Um-hm. What would you consider your best or most enjoyable memories about your time in the Senate? What did you really enjoy? Either in general you enjoyed it-- ROSE: --um-hm-- MOYEN: --over each session or specific instances? ROSE: Um-hm. I, I think the thing that, uh, that I enjoyed most, uh, about the Senate was, and, and it was a period of years, uh, period of six or eight or ten years, even, uh, when the Democratic Senate, the Democrats in the Senate, and, and always with the help of some Republicans that, that we were able to , uh--and I think history will bear this out--that we were able to have a coalition of people there that shared, even though we didn't agree on every issue, but we had a , we had a common goal that, that we could, uh, improve this state. And, and that we were, we were major players, if not the player-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --that set policy for the state for that ten-year period. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: Uh, and some very significant pieces of legislation were passed. Uh, and I don't think you've seen anything like that in the last eight or ten years. But from the period of, uh, from the period of, say, oh, like '86 through '96-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --uh, there was a time that the State Senate, and, and, uh, had, had the interests of the state, uh, at heart, and I think we passed major extensive legislation that has bettered the lives of Kentuckians. MOYEN: Um-hm. ROSE: And I guess that's the thing that, uh, that I look back upon and, and, uh, and, uh, relish the most-- MOYEN: --um-hm-- ROSE: --and am most satisfied with. MOYEN: What have I missed? What, what do you want to say? ROSE: I don't have anything. You've, you have been a pretty good questioner. You've covered a lot of things. I don't really, really have anything else. MOYEN: All right. Well thank you so much for your time. ROSE: Well, thank you. I enjoyed it. [End of interview.] Rose (Senate 1978-1998, 28th district; Democrat) delves into healthcare reform issues under Governor Patton, ethics legislation following the BOPTROT scandal, budget issues, his run for governor in 1995, his ousting from the Senate presidency, Republican takeover of the Senate, and the reasons behind his decision to support Republican Ernie Fletcher for governor. Part 2 of 2. insert here