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'My Friends Don't Treat Me This Way': Lt. Gov. Describes Rift With Bevin

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

The legal feud between Lieutenant Governor Jenean Hampton and Governor Matt Bevin made its way to court Monday, with Hampton and the top official's lawyer characterizing the disagreement differently.

A "minor disagreement between friends" – that’s how Bevin general counsel Steve Pitt described the tension between the Republican governor and the lieutenant governor over a staffing dispute.

Hampton, who is suing Bevin, had a different take.

"Well, my friends don't treat me this way. I'll just say that," she told reporters. 

The official says two of her staff members were dismissed without her approval. The administration argues Hampton chief of staff Steve Knipper was fired for violating policy, while questions remain about the termination of deputy chief of staff Arienne Southworth.

"My arguments are more, perhaps a courtesy. Why do I, out of every other constitutional officer... why am I having to fight for people? Why am I having to justify the people I have in the roles that they're in?" Hampton asked. 

The Associated Press reports lawyers for Bevin and Hampton presented their cases for about 90 minutes before Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd, who urged the parties to patch up the rift out of court.

Josh James fell in love with college radio at Western Kentucky University's student station, New Rock 92 (now Revolution 91.7). After working as a DJ and program director, he knew he wanted to come home to Lexington and try his hand in public radio.