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Redrawn district: Top state Democrat ends reelection bid

Legislative Research Commission
Representative Joni Jenkins

Kentucky’s top-ranking state House Democrat has announced she won’t seek reelection this year, saying she won’t stand in the way of a person of color being elected in her newly redrawn Louisville-area district where Black residents make up nearly 50% of the voting-age population.

State Rep. Joni Jenkins, who is white, said Wednesday she’ll maintain her legislative seat and caucus leadership through her term. She withdrew a day after the filing deadline for candidates to run in this year's primary.

GOP supermajorities in Kentucky's legislature passed a House redistricting map recently though it's facing a court challenge. A Black Democratic woman was the only other candidate to file to run in Jenkin's district.