The eagle flies and the turkey is getting ready to go too | Arkansas Blog

Friday, November 15, 2013

The eagle flies and the turkey is getting ready to go too

Posted By on Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 4:35 PM

Live, it's the Friday night open line. I'll be packing for a trip. Final thought:

* THE SCHOOL SETTLEMENT PROSPECTS: I'm no optimist. Never disappointed that way. But if I were forced to make a prediction today about the Pulaski County school case settlement endorsed by the legislature today it would be this:

John Walker will bring his clients into the settlement. And he'll have plenty to show for it.

But ..... if John Walker does NOT join the settlement, I think the chances of court approval of the settlement without him are remote for practical rather than legal reasons. If the state goes forward with a settlement to which John Walker objects, it must get an indication from federal Judge Price Marshall by a scheduling hearing set next Friday that he's amenable. If he needs a formal hearing on elements of the settlement and Walker's objections, there's a short window of time to hold one before the scheduled Dec. 9 trial on ending state payments. At some point, attorneys must stop negotiating. Gov. Mike Beebe has said he doesn't want the state to waive the Dec. 9 trial date if the settlement isn't certain. The question of the Pulaski County School District's completion of unitary status requirements don't lend themself to ready acceptance by a careful judge, which Marshall is, in the best of circumstances. Certainly not with a vigorous objection from a civil rights lawyer who's battled segregation in the county for a half-century.

In short, I'm guessing that if Walker doesn't join the case goes on to trial.  

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