Anarchists at the gate: the rising Republicans of Arkansas | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Anarchists at the gate: the rising Republicans of Arkansas

Posted By on Wed, Jun 19, 2013 at 7:35 AM

WHOSE CHECKS WOULD HE SIGN? Auditor candidate Ken Yang credited with provocative quote.
  • WHOSE CHECKS WOULD HE SIGN? Auditor candidate Ken Yang credited with provocative quote.
I've written before this week about the notion by Sen. David Sanders and Rep. John Burris and others that the bare majority of Arkansas Republican legislators is sufficient to override constitutional governance and allow them to tell executive agencies not to do business with people they don't like.

If David Sanders may declare Planned Parenthood off-limits for state contract work, who will he come for next? Baptists? Jews? The NAACP? Liberal newspapers?

I erupt again this morning at another bit of evidence of the disdain with which such ideological zealots view three-branch government in which a representative assembly is but one part. (And in a three-branch government, the legislative, it should go without saying, should only be able to act by majority vote of its members, not through backroom pressure and demagoguery from self-appointed dictators such as Sanders and Burris.)

I saw this Twitter post this morning by Republican Rep. Justin Harris. And if you can't believe this God-fearing young man, I don't know who you can believe:

State Constitution?Ouch!“@vnbien: 2night @kenyangAR said as State Auditor he would refuse 2 sign a check if he disagreed w law passed.”

Might Justin Harris actually be suggesting that Republican auditor candidate Ken Yang has gone too far? It would be a nice switch for Harris, who doesn't recognize the U.S. constitutional prohibition against state establishment of religion in publicly funded activities such as his pre-school.

But my real interest is the report that a candidate for statewide office has been quoted as saying he'd decide which legal obligations of the state he would pay based on his personal approval of the law. A court would quickly set him right on this, of course, at great expense to the state. Then what? Maybe he'd defy the court? That's for another day and Yang isn't likely to prevail in even the Republican primary.

Still.

Maybe Yang has been misquoted. But there's very little difference in the reported remark and what Sanders and Burris propose on deciding who does and doesn't get state Obamacare money. Only those with their seal of approval need apply. Applaud these bullies if you will, but don't call it constitutional.

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