Just a band-aid 

Just a band-aid

Gov. Mike Beebe has called a special session of the Arkansas legislature to shore up the public school employee insurance fund. The fix a majority of lawmakers have already agreed upon in principle will be temporary. The school employee plan will still be more expensive than the state employee insurance plan — one enjoyed by legislators, by the way — and be less inclusive. The only long-term solution is to merge school employees and state employees into one insurance pool.

Rapert, off the rails

As expected, the Arkansas Legislative Council easily approved Sen. Jason Rapert's resolution endorsing Arkansas's constitutional discrimination against gay couples in marriage. It includes encouragement of legislative action to prevent judges from negating the "will of the people."

Rapert's speech was mind-boggling as always. He asserted most gay couples didn't want to marry, they just wanted "affirmation." He said there was no evidence anyone was born gay. He said same-sex marriage would lead to laws that limited free speech by preachers. Nonsense. What isn't nonsense was Rep. John Walker's statement that this is a blow to judicial independence, a terrible thing.

Disenfranchised

Research by Holly Dickson, legal director for the ACLU of Arkansas, found that more than 1,000 ballots cast in the lightly voted primary election were not counted because voters failed to comply with the new voter ID law. Most of those — more than 900 — were absentee ballots that didn't include newly required proof of identity. The rest were people who voted in person, but didn't have a photo ID when they voted or were otherwise challenged. They cast provisional ballots and if they didn't return to a clerk's office to verify their ID, their votes weren't counted.

Plaintiffs in a challenge of the 2013 voter ID law have asked Circuit Judge Tim Fox to lift the stay of his ruling that struck down the law as unconstitutional. The case is on appeal and plaintiffs — represented by the ACLU and the Arkansas Public Law Center — want it not to be used in the general election because of the potential for disenfranchising voters.

If the law is not stayed, thousands of Arkansas voters could be disenfranchised in the November general election.

Speaking of Jason Rapert

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared

Latest in The Week That Was

  • Woo pig sooie, Dustin!

    Why is Attorney General Dustin McDaniel advertising his office during Razorback football radio broadcasts?
    • Sep 11, 2014
  • Direct democracy goes well with liquor

    Appropriate that this weirdly wet summer might birth the amendment that ends dry counties in Arkansas. Last week, the secretary of state's office announced that the organization Let Arkansas Decide had turned in enough signatures to place before voters an item to allow retail alcohol sales in all counties statewide: over 87,000 verified so far, with others being counted.
    • Sep 4, 2014
  • Randy Alexander wants to tell you a story about a young man who thought he was a dog

    Also, Mark Pryor owns up to voting for something that rhymes with Rowbomacare, Mark Darr is a deadbeat, Harrison struggles with African geography and Arkansas health care gets a boost.
    • Aug 28, 2014
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

September

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30  

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2014 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation