Rabbit Hash Mayor Banned From Businesses

Published: Mar. 13, 2008 at 5:55 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 16, 2008 at 1:06 PM EDT
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(RABBIT HASH, KY) -- A Kentucky mayor is now banned from entering any businesses in the town, and residents in Rabbit Hash, Kentucky are ticked.

Rabbit Hash is about as far away from big city politics as you can get. Any deals made there are out in the open. And it's a good thing, because the town's mayor, Junior, isn't allowed inside.

"He's the mayor of Rabbit Hash. How in the hell?  This is his courthouse," said one man sitting outside the town's general store.

"We also think he's one of the most honest politicians in the state of Kentucky," said Randy Cochran. "You know he's not lying because he never talks."

That's because Junior is a dog.

Several years ago someone thought electing an honorary mayor would be a good way to raise money for the town.

"We are going to do a typical Kentucky election," said Donny Clare. "Money talks. Dollar a vote."

Goofy was the first mayor. After he passed away, Junior was elected.

"You're a good boy," said Randy Cochran, petting Junior on the front porch of his Rabbit Hash home. "Even if they won't let you go in your store. Never bit anybody."

Junior was banned by the Health Department after a visitor complained about animals inside the store.

"I don't know how one person could cause so much trouble," said Bob Feldhouse, who works at the general store.

Randy Cochran isn't just Junior's driver, he's his owner. "He feels just terrible," he said. "He's been sick here lately and then having this come along. You take a sick dog who's favorite thing is to go to the store on Sunday and greet all the children and now he's not allowed to do that."

Even his most loyal supporters are upset.

"So far they haven't told us we couldn't keep them on the porch," said Andy Pierce. He brings his dog named Idaho Rabbit Hash, to the store every day. "She likes to see her buddies down here. She's got friends down here too."

The Health Department's reasoning, because food is sold inside.

"I've been living here 75 years," said Bud Feldhouse. "Never poisoned yet in it."

Junior supporters aren't so sure.

"Maybe it's just political jealousy," said Cochran. "Maybe that's what the real thing behind it is."

Cochran says he plans to petition the Northern Kentucky Health Department for an exemption. If not, he says their next election will just have to be held outside.

Report: WAVE3, Louisville