The House met briefly this afternoon at the Old State House to being a three-day special session. The Oaklawn bill to limit lottery expansion, amended to have temporary effect until March, cleared House committee without opposition.
Today on our program: Tom Cotton says he thinks the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby ruling is great. The Arkansas General Assembly appears to have reached a compromise on legislation that will limit the Arkansas lottery from expanding into video-style games. Staffers for the Arkansas lieutenant governor's office end their time doing nothing. And more.
Hobby Lobby, which won a Supreme Court ruling that it need not cover certain forms of birth control, invests its retirement money in funds whose holdings include makers of those forms of birth control, as well as insurance companies that cover abortions.
At this minute, multiple sources tell me this is the deal for the fight over the Oaklawn casino-backed effort to prohibit the Arkansas lottery from beginning electric monitor-provided keno-style games, now set for late September:
Legislation to ban the games will pass, but it will include a sunset provision in March 2015.
The lieutenant governor's office shuts down today, though its $300,000-a-year staff has had nothing to do for five months, since Mark Darr's resignation. Some will head to other state jobs, though the only staff member we can reach doesn't want to talk about what those jobs are.
The U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling today in the lawsuit by Hobby Lobby to deny coverage of certain types of contraceptives (including the Plan B morning after pill) in its employee health insurance plan.
I got two reports last night of robocalls urging calls to Little Rock City Board members to vote Tuesday night against the proposal for a MAPCO gas station at the dangerous Third and Broadway intersection, near the heart of the city/county government and convention district.
Now that the chorus of politicians invoking religious liberty against the president and local governments includes nearly every Republican presidential candidate, it is time to ask whether those who espouse religious liberty the most loudly believe in it least.
Brooke Arnold, writing in Salon, provides a personal look at life according to the teachings of a religious organization that has been influential with the Duggar family. She argues it cultivates a culture where women are more vulnerable to rape and sexual abuse.
The Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported over the weekend, though the Little Rock edition did not, that it had interviewed an unnamed church elder about Jim Bob and Josh Duggar's meeting with then-State Trooper Joseph Hutchens to report Josh Duggar's improper contact with girls in the Duggar household.