Ky. governor says kids faced sex assault due to teacher rally

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin railed against teachers protesting outside the state capitol this week, asserting with certainty that their demonstration resulted in children being sexually assaulted, poisoned and injured.

“I guarantee you somewhere in Kentucky today a child was sexually assaulted that was left at home because there was nobody there to watch them,” the Republican politician told reporters Friday evening.

“I guarantee you somewhere today, a child was physically harmed or ingested poison because they were home alone, because a single parent didn’t have enough money to take care of them.”

He added that he knew “for a fact” that “hundreds of thousands” of students were home because schools were closed across the state’s 39 districts so to allow teachers and administrators to protest potential funding cuts.

RELATED: Oklahoma, Kentucky teachers walk out over pay

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Oklahoma, Kentucky teachers walk out over pay
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Thousands of public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - APRIL 2: Elvin Lee, a teacher from Lawton, Oklahoma joints the teachers' rally at the state capitol on April 2, 2018 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Last week, Gov. Mary Fallin said teachers should come to the capitol to thank her for the raise. Thousands of teachers and supporters are scheduled to rally Monday at the state Capitol calling for higher wages and increased school funding. Teachers are walking off the job after a $6,100 pay raise was rushed through the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin. (Photo by J Pat Carter/Getty Images)
Oklahoma teachers rally outside the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S., April 2, 2018. REUTERS/Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
Thousands of Kentucky school teachers marched Monday, April 2, 2018 from the Kentucky Education Association's headquarters to the State Capitol in Frankfort, Ky. to protest legislative changes to their pensions and education cuts. Public schools in all 120 Kentucky counties were closed Monday, either to join in the protest or because of spring break. (Charles Bertram/Lexington Herald-Leader/TNS via Getty Images)
Oklahoma teachers rally outside the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S., April 2, 2018. REUTERS/Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
Oklahoma teachers rally outside the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S., April 2, 2018. REUTERS/Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
Oklahoma teachers rally outside the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S., April 2, 2018. REUTERS/Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
Oklahoma teachers rally outside the state Capitol in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S., April 2, 2018. REUTERS/Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill outside the senate chambers at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - APRIL 2: Natalie Armstrong (left) and her two daughters Payton and Payzlyn, along with her mother Katrina Sinor rally at the state capitol on April 2, 2018 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Thousands of teachers and supporters are scheduled to rally Monday at the state Capitol calling for higher wages and better school funding. Armstrong said she has spent $3,000 this year for school supplies Teachers are walking off the job after a $6,100 pay raise was rushed through the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin. (Photo by J Pat Carter/Getty Images)
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - APRIL 2: Oklahoma teachers rally at the state capitol on April 2, 2018 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Thousands of teachers and supporters are scheduled to rally Monday at the state Capitol calling for higher wages and better school funding. Teachers are walking off the job after a $6,100 pay raise was rushed through the Legislature and signed into law by Gov. Mary Fallin. (Photo by J Pat Carter/Getty Images)
Thousands of Kentucky teachers rallied at the state Capitol in Frankfort, Ky. on Monday, April 2, 2018. (Alex Slitz/Lexington Herald-Leader/TNS via Getty Images)
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill outside the senate chambers at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Thousands of public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Thousands of public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
FRANKFORT, KY - APRIL 2: Public school teachers and their supporters protest against a pension reform bill outside the senate chambers at the Kentucky State Capitol April 2, 2018 in Frankfort, Kentucky. The teachers are calling for higher wages and are demanding that Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin veto a bill that overhauls their pension plan. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
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Hours later, the Republican-dominated legislature overrode the GOP governor’s veto of the state’s two-year operating budget, which includes record new spending for education.

The money boost is expected to be funded by way of a 50-cent increase in the cigarette tax and a 6 percent sales tax on services including home and auto repair.

Bevin slammed the bills as “sloppy” and “non-transparent,” calling for alternative options following his veto.

Thousands of teachers on Friday rallied both inside and outside the Capitol, encouraging lawmakers to part with Bevin on the issue. They sat in lawn chairs and held up signs as they lounged on blankets while tunes like “Teach Your Children” blasted from nearby speakers.

Bevin criticized the protesting teachers for “hanging out, shoes off... smoking, leaving trash,” and “taking the day off.”

“As surely as we’re having this conversation, children were harmed, some physically, some sexually,” he continued. “Some were introduced to drugs for the first time because they were vulnerable and left alone. It’s offensive. It really is.”

The House voted 57-40 to override the veto of the tax increase and 66-28 to override Bevin’s veto of the budget, with Republicans eager to assert their independence after a challenging year muddied by a sexual harassment scandal.

Bevin responded to the outcome on Twitter, writing that he’d been meeting with House and Senate leaders all week to find a “more responsible way to pay for 100 percent of the requested education funding.”

But he was met with “Crickets,” he quipped.

The veto override marks a victory for Kentucky teachers who earlier this year bemoaned changes to their pension system. The Senate is slated to take up the vetoes next.

“You can stand here all day and act like you are all for (education) until it comes time to pay for it,” said Republican Rep. Regina Huff, a middle school special education teacher.

“We have to have this revenue to fund our schools.”

With News Wire Services

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