Arkansas Politics

Friday, August 26, 2016

Friday, August 26, 2016 - 12:55:00

A plan for Arkansas to get more out of the money it spends on corrections

Arkansas's prison population is among the fastest growing in the country. The state now spends more than half of a billion dollars on corrections, a 68 percent increase since 2004, and our prison population, which increased by 21 percent between 2012 and 2016, is expected to rise by another 19 percent between 2016 and 2023 to 21,345. Those were the facts and projections Justice Center, a project of the national nonprofit Council of State Governments, reminded people of yesterday before presenting criminal justice reform proposals.

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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Thursday, August 25, 2016 - 11:26:00

Arkansas criminal justice reform proposal due today

We'll get a good sense of what criminal justice reform legislation might look like in the 2017 General Assembly later today — as well as some potential stumbling blocks to its passage. Justice Center, an offshoot of the national nonprofit Council of State Governments, will offer policy recommendations to the Legislative Criminal Justice Oversight Task Force this afternoon at the Arkansas Association of Counties conference.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Wednesday, August 24, 2016 - 09:50:00

That time Asa Hutchinson sort of endorsed medical marijuana

Advocates of medical marijuana are circulating a YouTube video of a 2011 debate at the University of Arkansas between Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, and Asa Hutchinson, not then governor but speaking as a former DEA Administrator and congressman. Hutchinson seemed open to medical use of marijuana.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016 - 09:18:00

Eldridge raps Boozman for Florida trip while ducking debates

Conner Eldridge, the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, is knocking Republican opponent, incumbent Sen. John Boozman, for traveling to Florida this week while refusing to meet Eldridge for debate in Arkansas.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016 - 07:19:00

Group forms to fight medical marijuana

A coalition of powerful lobbying groups filed papers with the Arkansas Ethics Commission Tuesday to fight medical marijuana issues headed for the November ballot.

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Monday, August 22, 2016

Monday, August 22, 2016 - 07:31:00

Surgeon general ready to fight medical marijuana

Arkansas Surgeon General Gregory Bledsoe has taken to social media to seek speaking engagements to oppose medical marijuana.

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Sunday, August 21, 2016

Sunday, August 21, 2016 - 08:28:00

A House debate in Jonesboro illustrates politics today

A Tea Party-style Trump supporter faced off a progressive Democrat in a debate over a state House race in Jonesboro last week. Talk about clear choices.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wednesday, August 17, 2016 - 16:54:00

The nation's attorney, Leslie Rutledge, meddling in D.C. politics

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge can't be moved to do anything about unconstitutional payday lending in the state that pays her,  but a day rarely passes that she can't mess in the politics of some other jurisdiction.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2016 - 14:46:00

Former state Rep. Harold Copenhaver to run for Jonesboro mayor

Former state Rep. Harold Copenhaver has announced he's running for mayor of Jonesboro.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Tuesday, August 16, 2016 - 07:46:00

Clubbing with the Arkansas legislature

A powerful lobbyist invites others of her station to a fund-raiser for a member of the Arkansas legislature at — where else — a private club started by another member of the Arkansas legislature.

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Tuesday, August 16, 2016 - 07:37:00

Fact-free politics from Northwest Arkansas. An 'R' is enough.

Here's a bit of minor league funny business in a race for Arkansas legislature — small potatoes, but illustrative of politics in blood-red Arkansas, where faith and branding "trump" facts just about every time.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Wednesday, August 10, 2016 - 07:19:00

Legislator working again on paid maternity leave for state employees

Worth noting: State Rep. Clarke Tucker of Little Rock is working on legislation to provide six weeks of paid maternity leave for state employees.

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Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Tuesday, August 9, 2016 - 17:13:00

Democrats lose challenge to Republican nominee for Washington County judge

A judge ruled today that the Republican Party had followed state law in picking a substitute nominee to run for Washington County judge.

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Monday, August 8, 2016

Monday, August 8, 2016 - 19:03:00

Paperwork filed for 6,000-pound Ten Commandments monument on Capitol grounds

Thou shalt not make to thyself any graven images.

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Monday, August 8, 2016 - 18:07:00

Governor defends state party's decision to strike pre-k from platform

Gov. Asa Hutchinson defended removal of any mention of pre-k from party platform, said that the current funding will continue, and that he will "work with the legislature to determine what additional funding should go to pre-k."

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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 - 15:43:00

Cotton talks Trump, fences and the Intelligence Committee

Senator Tom Cotton spoke Tuesday at Little Rock's Political Animals Club luncheon. HE 

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - 16:04:00

Casino push comes up short, but has 30 days to meet ballot criteria

Arkansas Wins in 2016, the ballot committee  pushing for passage of a constitutional amendment to allow casino gambling in Boone, Miller and Washington counties, has enough valid signatures to receive extra time to collect the number of signatures required to be approved for the ballot, spokesperson Robert Coon said today.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016 - 10:26:00

Hutchinson announces plans to call special election to fill Rep. Lampkin's District 9 seat

Governor Hutchinson said yesterday that he plans to call a special election to fill the Arkansas House of Representatives District 9 seat left vacant by the death of Rep. Sheilla Lampkin (D-Monticello). Retired brigadier general LeAnne Burch has announced that she'll seek the Democratic nomination for the seat.

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Monday, July 25, 2016

Monday, July 25, 2016 - 10:16:00

Bauxite teacher will speak at the Democratic National Convention

Former President Bill Clinton will soak up most of the attention Tuesday night but there will be another Arkansan taking the stage: Dustin Parsons, a fifth-grade teacher from Pine Haven Elementary in Bauxite.

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Monday, July 25, 2016 - 09:58:00

Conner Eldridge trailing John Boozman in fundraising hauls

Former U.S. Attorney Conner Eldridge, the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate challenging Republican incumbent Sen. John Boozman, raised around $290,000 in the second quarter of 2016 and ended the quarter with $315,000 cash on hand.

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  • Satanic Temple: Make Rapert pay for Ten Commandments monument

    A petition drive has begun to encourage a demand that Sen. Jason Rapert pay for the legal fees in defending his Ten Commandments monument proposed for the state Capitol grounds. It's more work by the Satanic Temple, which has fought church-state entanglement around the country.
  • Concrete gulch hearing this week

    Metroplan will vote Wednesday on a waiver of the six-lane freeway limit in its regional transportation plan to remove one obstacle to building a huge concrete gulch through the center of Little Rock — 10 lanes of freeway and even more concrete in some spots — to hasten the movement of traffic to and from suburbs to the detriment of quality of life in the city. Big surprise: the business establishment's drum major Mayor Mark Stodola, wants to pour the concrete.
  • The boys on the tracks are back

    A lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court in Little Rock bears notice for its effort to breathe life into the 29-year-old story most familiarly known as the Boys on the Tracks.

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