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The Latest: Pence stumps for Kentucky governor

March 8, 2019
FILE - In this March 11, 2017 file photo, Vice President Mike Pence, right, and Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin address a group of business owners to gather support for the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act in Louisville, Ky. Pence will raise money for Bevin in Kentucky, one of three states that will elect governor's in 2019 .(AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley, File)

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — The Latest on Vice President Mike Pence’s visit to Kentucky (all times local):

4:07 p.m.

Vice President Mike Pence says Kentucky’s Republican governor has the full and total endorsement of President Donald Trump as he seeks re-election in 2019.

Pence spoke at a campaign event for Gov. Matt Bevin on Friday in Lexington. Pence praised Bevin for what he called his pro-business policies that have “taken the reins off” so that “Kentucky is running again.”

Pence noted Bevin has eliminated lots of state regulations that have made it easier for businesses to operate. He lauded Bevin for leading Kentucky toward record per-pupil spending in the classroom but did not mention that Bevin vetoed the state budget in 2018 that made that possible.

Bevin called Pence a “good personal friend” and said he has been an inspiration to him.

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10:57 a.m.

Vice President Mike Pence will campaign for Kentucky’s Republican governor in one of the Trump administration’s first steps into a trio of 2019 governor’s races acting as a precursor to the 2020 presidential campaign.

Voters in Kentucky, Louisiana and Mississippi will elect governors this year, giving Democrats a chance to test their message in the heart of Trump country ahead of the 2020 election. Louisiana has a Democrat running for a second term while Mississippi’s race is open because of term limits, making Kentucky’s Matt Bevin the only Republican incumbent governor on the ballot in 2019.

Pence is scheduled to appear at a fundraiser for Bevin on Friday in Lexington, Kentucky. Tickets are $1,000, or $2,000 to be a sponsor, according to an invitation obtained by The Associated Press.

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