Shannon Fabert likes to keep a close eye on Northern Kentucky politics.
She’s watched the election cycles heat up and cool down, observed candidates and took notes.
This time she decided it was time to stop observing and campaign herself. Fabert, 41, of Burlington, threw herself into the Democratic primary for the 4th Congressional District to unseat incumbent Republican Rep. Thomas Massie.
“Congress belongs to the people and I think we need representation that looks and feels like us,” Fabert told The Enquirer.
Fabert, a newcomer to politics, described herself as a moderate with a few progressive ideas. Her background is rooted in business consulting, which included a stint at Jack Casino when it was named Horseshoe Casino.
Fabert will face Democratic candidate Alexandra Owensby of Fort Thomas in the May primary election. Both woman want to unseat conservative Massie who has represented the district for seven years. The district covers Boone, Campbell, Kenton, Pendleton and Gallatin, stretching into into 15 more counties.
Previous Democrats haven’t gotten close to beating Massie. In 2018, Democratic candidate Seth Hall got about 34% of the vote when he ran against Massie.
Fabert grew up in Memphis, Tennessee. Her work brought her to Pennsylvania until she and her husband moved to Northern Kentucky 10 years ago.
The Burlington residents like to play golf and typically cook meals at home with their 9-year-old Old English Sheepdog, Hines. When they do go out, Fabert said there’s a few favorite Mexican food restaurants and places to get a good burger.
Looking ahead to her policy approach, Fabert said “big ships turn slowly,” and laid out how she would approach a few key topics.
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Her stance: Against tolls to pay for the Brent Spence bridge replacement and wants to bring “ingenuity” to the solution.
“It’s larger than the Brent Spence bridge,” she said. She added that she wants to incorporate an environmental mindset when thinking about future infrastructure needs and projects.
Her stance: Would not say if she’s for or against automatic rifle bans. Supports some gun control legislation like so-called “Red Flag” laws.
“If someone wants to have one responsibly, I think that we need to evaluate how that’s done,” she said
She said the starting point to tackle gun violence should be rooted in research. She added that she didn’t want people living with a mental illness to be stigmatized further if “we aren’t willing to support the research necessary to educate ourselves.”
Her stance: Wants to keep private insurance.
“I don’t think we can turn the switch tomorrow for Medicare for All,” she said.
Fabert said she wants to keep private healthcare because it falls into her belief that “we should reward private entities who are doing the right thing for their team members.”
About the election
The Democratic party’s primary election for the 4th District Kentucky congressional seat is May 19. The general election is Nov. 3. Deadline to register for the primary is April 20.
Julia is the Northern Kentucky government reporter through the Report For America program. Anonymous donors pledged to cover the local donor portion of her grant-funded position with The Enquirer. If you want to support Julia’s work, you can donate to her Report For America positionat this website or email her editor Carl Weiser at email@example.com to find out how you can help fund her work.
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