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Charlie Owen is a businessman residing in Louisville, Kentucky. He earned his bachelor's degree at Princeton University and his law degree at the University of Virginia. Owen worked as a federal prosecutor before Governor of Kentucky Edward T. Breathitt asked him to return to Kentucky to head the state crime commission. In that capacity Owen worked under three different governors (two Democrats, one Republican) and played a role in enacting Kentucky's penal code, medical examiner system, and law enforcement training programs. Owen then left state government to go into business, working in cable television and real estate development. Owen first sought elective office in 1994 when he ran for the open seat in Kentucky's Third Congressional District. Owen finished second in the Democratic primary behind state representative Mike Ward by 1,400 votes. This was in spite of have spent $800,000 to Ward's $150,000. Ward went on to win the general election. In 1998 Owen ran for the United States Senate seat being vacated by Wendell H. Ford and placed second in the Democratic primary, winning 166,472 votes (29.3%). Owen finished behind Congressman Scotty Baesler who won 194,125 votes (34.2%), but ahead of Lieutenant Governor Steve Henry who won 156,576 votes (27.6%). In 2003 Owen considered running for Governor of Kentucky but instead slated with Ben Chandler as Chandler's running mate for Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky. Chandler and Owen won 484,931 votes (45.0%) to 593,489 (55.0%) for Ernie Fletcher and Steve Pence.Owen was among those Democrats discussed as a potential candidate for U.S. Senator in 2008 against Mitch McConnell.

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