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Teacher defeats Kentucky House majority floor leader in Republican primary

A high school math teacher defeated the House majority floor leader of the Kentucky House of Representatives in an election that comes following a wave of education protests at state Capitols.

ROCKCASTLE COUNTY, Ky. - A high school math teacher has defeated the House majority floor leader of the Kentucky House of Representatives in an election that comes following a wave of education protests at state Capitols.

Travis Brenda narrowly defeated state Rep. Jonathan Shell on Tuesday to win the Republican nomination for House District 71. Two years ago, Shell was credited with helping orchestrate the first GOP takeover of the state House of Representatives in nearly 100 years. But voters turned on him for his role in writing a new state law that made changes to the state's pension system.

Brenda credited a groundswell of teacher support for his victory and says it sends a message to other candidates that teachers and public workers will not be silent. Brenda will face Democrat Mary Renfro in the general election.

At least 15 other current and former teachers were also on the ballot Tuesday.

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