Kentucky candidate for Congress has no apologies for past

Lexington herald-LeaderMarch 15, 2010 

FRANKFORT — Retired coal executive Mike Templeman is running for Congress with no apologies for a career that includes bankruptcies, debt lawsuits, unpaid taxes and environmental messes left by his strip-mining companies in Appalachia.

Until this month, there was a pending criminal summons for Templeman in Franklin District Court. He faced a contempt-of-court charge for skipping a 2009 hearing about an old, boarded-up house he's allowing to deteriorate, to the dismay of Frankfort officials who want him to repair it.

After the Herald-Leader asked him about the summons, his attorney arranged for it to be recalled. A new hearing is set for March 30.

Templeman, 62, says voters this year are angry enough to elect someone like him who fights the government.

"You send me to Congress and I've had all these life experiences," said Templeman, one of six Republicans competing in the May 18 primary to challenge U.S. Rep. Ben Chandler, D-Versailles, in November. Chandler has no Democratic opponent.

"I've had some successes and I've had some failures," Templeman said in a recent interview at his hilltop farm overlooking the state Capitol. "I think that's what we need in Washington. I think your failures can educate you more than your successes."

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