Former state legislator Charlie Fuqua is back, warning Republicans in a mass email that "the only people who ever get slimed are the good guys." You know, good guys like he and Jon Hubbard, whose 2012 campaigns for state legislature were derailed after the Times excerpted all sorts of really nutty things they'd written in the past.
Arkansas Repubs have come from far and wide today to Springdale to hear pretend historian David Barton make shit up. Barton earlier appeared at Ecclesia College, where he serves on the board of regents. Tonight he's at the Springdale High Performing Arts Center. You'll be able to tell the truly deranged Republicans from the rest of the pack by those who trumpet their attendance and retweet Barton's garbage.
There's no surer sign of the growing strength of the Republican Party than meaningful division in the ranks, both personal and political.
We've seen it in the deep split in the Republican delegation on the private option Medicaid expansion. And now it's my pleasure to pass along this remarkably lucid warning from Secure Arkansas — an extreme right group — that decries the influence of money, the Koch brothers and outside organizations such as the American Legislative Exchange Council on an issue dear to Secure Arkansas, fluoridation of water.
Arkansas is trending conservative, but at least Ted Nugent isn't yet campaigning for the next governor (see Texas) and, so far, nobody has put a Confederate flag on the Little Rock Nine memorial at the state Capitol (see Mississippi).
U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, the extremist Republican who'll headline an Arkansas Republican fund-raiser Dec. 6 in Hot Springs, is getting some unflattering attention this week for lines in his speeches that appear to come verbatim from Wikipedia.
It was inevitable. But AP is reporting that it's official: The federal Interior Department has rescinded the designation of the White River watershed as a "blueway," part of a voluntary federal conservation program.
Legislative committees are hearing this afternoon about the White River Blueway, a thoroughly establishmentarian and voluntary conservation program that enjoyed widespread support, even among many Republicans, until conspiracy conspiracists got hold of it.
Facts don't matter. Despite not a shred of evidence to the contrary, Secure Arkansas's Jeannie Burlsworth, the state's leading anti-government conspiracy crank; assorted Quorum Courts; Dr. No Boozman and a growing contingent of Republican politico have decided that the White River blueway program is a land grab rather than a garden variety conservation program with money available for voluntary participants in various sorts of projects.
First it was Republican Rep. Nate Bell, with his non-apology apology for slurring Bostonians while trying to score a pro-gun political point in the midst of a manhunt for police killers noticeably undeterred by firepower.
Last week, Rep. Josh Miller, a Republican legislator from Heber Springs, spoke against the private option Medicaid expansion last week. He invoked FDR's New Deal — a "hand up," he said, not a "handout."
Scott Ellington, the prosecuting attorney for Arkansas's Second Judicial District, said in a recent interview that, "There are no ongoing investigations by governmental investigative authorities" concerning the West Memphis Three case. Ellington may be the only person on the planet who believes there is "closure" in my case.