Health care and women’s issues are top priorities for Democratic National Convention delegate Karen Ward.
The Winchester resident is the chair of the Clark County Democratic Executive Committee and a past president of the Clark County Democratic Woman’s Club. She was selected at the state Democratic convention to represent Kentucky at the national event.
“It’s just been a whirlwind, a wonderful, happy, educational whirlwind,” Ward said. “I can’t say enough nice things, and I’ve been a Democrat well over 38 years now, and it’s such an honor to be elected to go to the national convention.”
For her, highlights include hearing prominent Democratic women speak, like first lady Michelle Obama and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. The convention has renewed her interest in local elections, Ward said, particularly the race for state representative from District 73 between Donna Mayfield and JoEllen Reed.
“All this excitement has helped me to be even more excited about the races in Kentucky,” Ward said.
Several Kentucky politicians also are attending the event, including state auditor Adam Edelen and District 28 Senator R.J. Palmer, also from Winchester.
“It’s amazing the number of people that are here,” Ward said.
Prior to attending the convention, Ward spoke to another local Democrat, Betty Pace, who was selected as a delegate to the 2008 convention. Pace advised her to “go and have a wonderful time,” which Ward said she has done so far.
Primarily, though, she is interested in what Democrats can do to help make people’s lives better.
“That’s what we’re all about,” Ward said.
The message at the convention, Ward said, is that people’s lives are better now than they were four years ago, before President Obama took office.
“I¿believe in (Obama’s) health care package,” Ward said.
She also said she is concerned about a Republican plan to implement Medicare vouchers in Kentucky, and protecting women’s rights.
“I want our women to have the health care that they need. I want more women to be elected. I think we have so many capable women who don’t run, who need to be more interested,” Ward said.
Despite predictions of a close race, Ward is confident Obama will be elected to another term.
“I feel really good, and I’m very excited,” Ward said.
As of press time, R.J. Palmer could not be reached for comment.
Contact Rachel Parsons Gilliam at email@example.com.