The view from the board rooms UPDATE | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The view from the board rooms UPDATE

Posted By on Tue, Apr 20, 2010 at 10:16 AM

Randy Zook of the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce has distributed findings of an online survey of chamber membership on primary election sentiment. Do they reflect the state as a whole? I'd guess not.

UPDATE: There's nothing scientific or representative about a poll of C of C members. And you could say the same about a straw poll of senior Democrats in Northwest Arkansas. Elwood reports this news -- the crowd of older Dems preferred Bill Halter. Details on jump.

LETTER FROM RANDY ZOOK

Thank you for participating in the recent informal online survey for the Arkansas State Chamber. We received an overwhelming response from our membership and we appreciate your comments. Your input is vital so that we can continue making informed decisions on those issues most important to you.


As you know, Arkansas is in the spotlight this election year, and as evidenced by your responses, below are some key findings:


-The Democrat to Republican primary voter statistic was a close run at 50.7 percent and 50 percent, respectively.


- Governor Beebe received a 75.9 percent of the vote leading Jim Keet in the race for governor.


- Of the number casting votes in the Democratic primary, 75.6 percent said they would vote for incumbent U.S. Senator Blanche Lincoln, with Bill Halter receiving 16.3 percent of the vote. D.C. Morrison picked up 8.4 percent.


-Of those casting votes in the Republican primary, 68.4 percent said they would vote for Third District Congressman John Boozman. Sen. Gilbert Baker came in a distant second with 18.4 percent of the vote.


-Senator Mark Pryor's job performance was rated at 59 percent unfavorable.


-One of the Chamber's most important issues, the Employee Free Choice Act, also known as card-check, received a 93.1 percent opposition response.
Due to the overwhelming interest in this informal survey, your Arkansas State Chamber will likely conduct additional surveys as the need arises.


Thanks,
Randy Zook 

ELWOOD'S REPORT ON SENIOR DEMOCRATS

Sr Demos of Washington County held its monthly meeting today in Springale (Western Sizzlin) with guest speaker Doug Thompson, editorial manager for NWA Newspapers.

Thompson briefly spoke of his newspaper career in Arkansas beginning with an assignment in south Arkansas and moving to the ADG, then he and his wife later being hired by Stephens Media . He then opened his talk to questions from the floor and made the following observations:

The Republican Senate primary is a name recognition campaign. Thompson predicted a runoff between Boozman and Baker and said not to count out Jim Holt as a possible runoff contender. He repeatedly reminded Sr Democrats not to underestimate Boozman. Thompson said that Boozman is a very strong candidate.

Regarding a question about 3rd Congressional District primary (only one Demo is running) Thompson said Mayor Wommack is the "Chamber of Commerce candidate" and likely the most serious contender, adding that Cecil Bledsoe is a good person but her vote for the tobacco tax hurts her in NWA.  He predicted that Gunner Delay will most likely be in the Republican 3rd District runoff.

When asked about an "editorial connection" between NWA Newspapers it's sister paper,  Arkansas Demo-Gazette, he said "there is no editorial connection." He was once flattered that local people were concerned about NWA Newspapers editorial independence.

Thompson was surprised the NWA group was so interested in the 2nd District Congressional primaries, mainly the likely outcome of a Tim Griffin's campaign of which he claimed little knowledge. He did say that someone's who's only claim to fame is that he took another person's job is not much a qualification.

Straw Poll
Sr Democrats conducted a straw poll for statewide Demo primary offices and judicial races:

U.S. Senate
Sen Blanche Lincoln................35
Lt Gov. Bill Halter.....................39

Land Commissioner
Mike Berg.....................................1
L.J. Bryant....................................16
Rep. Monty Davenport...................41

Sec. of State
County Clerk Pat O'brien..............24
Doris Tate...................................22
Mark Wilcox................................14

Ark Supreme Court Position 3
Judge John Fogleman .................8
Judge Courtney Henry.................66

Ark Supreme Court Position 6
Judge Karen Baker......................23
Judge Tim Fox.............................36
Evelyn Moorehead........................3
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
 Bill Halter was guest speaker at March's Washington County Sr Demos. Will Waters announced that Halter for Senate campaign offices opened today in Fayetteville on Block St.

Larry Woodall, Mary Ann Yancey and Carolyn Griffith  conducted the straw poll.
U.S. Senate Demo results were surprising since the group is composed of primarily women and retired persons.

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