Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear says he appointed his chief Republican rival in the Legislature to a judicial post because he was the best qualified applicant for the job.
In his first comments since appointing Senate President David Williams circuit judge in southern Kentucky, Beshear said Wednesday he had a responsibility to pick the best person for the job and that he feels he achieved that.
Williams had been a hindrance to Beshear on some of his top legislative priorities, including a push to lift a constitutional ban on casino gambling in Kentucky.
Beshear appointed Williams to the judicial position Friday afternoon. That came despite the fact that Williams had run against Beshear last year in a vitriolic gubernatorial election that showed an intense dislike between the two.