Matt Bevin

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Matt Bevin
Matt Bevin.jpg
Candidate for
Governor of Kentucky
Bachelor'sWashington and Lee University (1989)
Military service
Service/branchU.S. Army
Years of service1989-1993
Campaign website
Matt Bevin campaign logo
Matt Bevin is a Republican candidate for Governor of Kentucky in the 2015 elections. He filed his candidacy on January 27, 2015, only hours before the end of the filing period. Bevin is running with lieutenant gubernatorial candidate Jenean M. Hampton.[1]

He was a Republican candidate for the United States Senate in the 2014 elections in Kentucky.[2] Bevin was defeated by incumbent Mitch McConnell in the Republican primary on May 20, 2014.[3]

Bevin officially announced his Senate candidacy on July 24, 2013, at the state capitol in Frankfort, Kentucky. From there, he began a three-day tour with eight campaign stops.[2] Bevin was a political newcomer, but had significant wealth to use against incumbent McConnell in the primary.[2]


Bevin grew up in Shelburne, NH.[4]

After high school, he attended Washington and Lee University in Virginia with a four-year ROTC scholarship.[4] After graduating in 1989, Bevin was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Army, and rose to the rank of Captain. He spent four years on active duty with primary responsibilities as the 5th Mechanized Infantry Division Artillery’s counterfire officer.[4]


After his military service, Bevin worked in the financial industry. He founded several local firms and invested in a number of other companies in Kentucky, and around the United States, ranging from manufacturing to software.[4]



Bevin took part in a rally in April 2014 to support the legalization of cockfighting in Kentucky.[5]

Bevin's campaign described the event at the Corbin Arena in Corbin, Kentucky, as a "states' rights rally," and said that Bevin was unaware that it had any ties to cockfighting.[6]

"It was not a cockfighting rally, it was a states' rights rally," said Rachel Semmel, a Bevin spokeswoman.[5]

TARP funding

In February 2014, Bevin called the 2008 federal bailout of banks and Wall Street giants “irresponsible” and says he would have opposed it.[7] The comments came after prior backing by Bevin in 2008 when he supported the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) and the Federal Reserve’s decision to begin buying commercial paper issued by banks.[7]

Bevin campaign spokeswoman Rachel Semmel said in a statement, “Matt has always opposed the TARP bailout and similar misuses of taxpayer dollars."[7]

Involvement in Syria

According to a report by The Hill in September 2013, Bevin was among four Republican senate candidates who had come out against intervening in Syria while the incumbent challenger, in this case Mitch McConnell, remained undecided.[8]

GOP win

At an event sponsored by the FreedomWorks PAC on February 10, 2014, Bevin asserted that McConnell could not win a general election.[9] At the event, Bevin claimed that he would be only Republican who could beat Democratic candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes.

“We run a tremendous risk of losing this seat in Kentucky to someone who does not represent Kentucky values. We run the risk of losing this seat because of a sense of apathy and a sense of fatigue for the career politician that is my opponent in this primary, Mitch McConnell,” Bevin said.[9]



See also: Kentucky gubernatorial and lieutenant gubernatorial election, 2015

Bevin is running for the office of governor in Kentucky. He and running mate Jenean M. Hampton filed candidacy papers on January 27, 2015.[10] The primary is scheduled for May 19, 2015, with the general election scheduled for November 3, 2015.


See also: United States Senate elections in Kentucky, 2014

Bevin ran as a Republican candidate for the United States Senate in the 2014 elections in Kentucky. Bevin was defeated by incumbent Mitch McConnell in the Republican primary on May 20, 2014.[3]

U.S. Senate, Kentucky Republican Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngMitch McConnell Incumbent 60.2% 213,753
Matt Bevin 35.4% 125,787
Shawna Sterling 2% 7,214
Chris Payne 1.5% 5,338
Brad Copas 0.9% 3,024
Total Votes 355,116
Source: Kentucky State Board of Elections

Bevin's announcement

The same day that McConnell's primary challenger Matt Bevin was set to officially announce his candidacy, McConnell’s campaign announced a new ad buy labeling his primary opponent “Bailout Bevin” and noting that Bevin's business, which is based in Connecticut, accepted $200,000 in bailout funds.[11]

McConnell's July 24, 2013, ad, "Bailout Bevin"

Matt Bevin's first ad, released July 24, 2013, "Meet Matt Bevin"

In response to McConnell’s ad, the Senate Conservatives Fund went after McConnell and said, “It’s the height of hypocrisy for Mitch McConnell to attack anyone on bailouts when he was the one who voted with Barack Obama to bail out the Wall Street banks.”[11]

Bevin released his own ad on the day he announced his official candidacy. The ad, "Meet Matt Bevin," began by Bevin saying, “Mitch McConnell has had a long career in politics. But after 30 years in politics, is his leadership really the best that we can do? America deserves more than failed leadership. We can do better.”[12]

A narrator chimes in, saying that “McConnell has voted for higher taxes, bailouts, debt ceiling increases, congressional pay raises, and liberal judges.” Bevin, on the other hand, is described as a “successful businessman, father of nine, veteran, conservative, Republican.”[12]

Republican primary
Poll Mitch McConnell Matt BevinBrad CopasChris PayneShawna SterlingUndecidedMargin of ErrorSample Size
May 14-16, 2014
Gravis/Human Events
May 12, 2014
NBC News/Marist
April 30 - May 6, 2014
Gravis Marketing/Human Events
April 15-17, 2014
Public Opinion Strategies
February 24-26, 2014
Wenzel Strategies
February 8-11, 2014
Survey USA
January 30-February 4, 2014
Gravis Marketing/Human Events
January 2, 2014
Public Policy Polling
December 12-15, 2013
Lake Research
Ocotber 24-29, 2013
Voter/Consumer Research
August 18-20, 2013
Wenzel Strategies
July 23-24, 2013
AVERAGES 55.75% 26% 0.08% 0.08% 0.25% 17.08% +/-4.07 792
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to

Campaign donors


Candidates for Congress were required to file up to seven main reports with the Federal Election Commission during the 2014 elections season. Below are Bevin's reports.[13]

Matt Bevin (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
October Quarterly[14]October 15, 2013$0.00$822,020.60$(657,480.98)$164,539.62
Running totals

Personal wealth

Bevin filed his personal financial wealth report in November 2013.[15] The reported showed millions in cash and assets that were ready to be loaned or contributed to his campaign, and included $1 million to $5 million in a Bank of America checking account and $500,0001 to $1 million in a Commonwealth Bank & Trust money market account.[15] In total, the report found that Bevin had between roughly $10 million and $50 million.[15]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term "Matt + Bevin + Kentucky + governor + 2015"

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Matt Bevin News Feed

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See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. National Journal, "Matt Bevin to Make Shock Run for Kentucky Governor," January 27, 2015
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Washington Post, "Businessman set to enter primary against McConnell," accessed July 22, 2013
  3. 3.0 3.1 Associated Press, "Kentucky Election Results," accessed May 20, 2014
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Facebook: "Matt Bevin for Kentucky, Info," accessed January 25, 2014
  5. 5.0 5.1 Courier Journal, "Matt Bevin attended cockfighting rally," accessed April 5, 2014
  6. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named dockfighting
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Politico, "Kentucky Senate race 2014: Matt Bevin, Mitch McConnell and TARP," accessed February 12, 2014
  8. Politico, "Senate primary challengers target GOP incumbents on Syria strikes," September 8, 2013
  9. 9.0 9.1 Politico, "Matt Bevin: Mitch McConnell can’t win in November," accessed February 11, 2014
  10. Kentucky Secretary of State, "Information for Matt Bevin, Candidate for Governor," January 27, 2015
  11. 11.0 11.1 Washington Post, "McConnell launches ad against soon-to-be primary opponent," accessed July 24, 2013
  12. 12.0 12.1 Washington Post, "Matt Bevin launches campaign against McConnell," accessed July 24, 2013
  13. Federal Election Commission: "Matt Bevin 2014 Summary reports," accessed November 13, 2013
  14. Federal Election Commission, "October Quarterly," accessed November 13, 2013
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Roll Call, "Matt Bevin Reports Millions in ash and Assets Ready for Campaign," accessed November 26, 2013