GOP officials face hearings on FOI and ethics; a loser's tab escalates | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, December 7, 2013

GOP officials face hearings on FOI and ethics; a loser's tab escalates

Posted By on Sat, Dec 7, 2013 at 7:10 AM

click to enlarge DATE WITH ETHICS COMMISSION: Lt. Gov. Mark Darr. - BLUE HOG REPORT
  • Blue Hog Report
  • DATE WITH ETHICS COMMISSION: Lt. Gov. Mark Darr.
Blue Hog Report
rounds up several items of continuing interest in author Matt Campbell's careful examination of the public record of Arkansas Republicans.

* SECRETARY OF STATE'S FLOUTING OF FOI: Dec. 17 is the date for a long-delayed-by-Mark-Martin legal filibustering of Campbell's FOI lawsuit that arose from the office's illegal use of outside counsel to defend the variety of legal screwups in which Martin seems to often find himself. 

* LT. GOV. MARK DARR'S ABUSE OF CAMPAIGN MONEY: Dec. 18 is the date the state Ethics Commission has set for a probable cause hearing on whether Darr violated a slew of rules and statutes related to spending of, and accounting for, campaign money. The Ethics Commission review is apart from review of Darr's spending of state taxpayer money in his expense account on travel unrelated to his official duties. In theory, the Division of Legislative Audit gets first look at that. Some day. Presuming the Republican-dominated SWAT team can be bothered to review a Republican politician. Darr has already admitted mistakes were made int he campaign report. As yet, no Republican has shown much interest in his fouls. Campbell properly wonders if those who demanded justice in the case of Paul Bookout will be so inclined here, should violations be found.

* STATE'S BIGGEST LOSER: He finished a poor third in a special Republican primary for state Senate in Jonesboro, but Chad Niell holds interest for Campbell, who dug up some problems with regulatory issues in Niell's business profiting from money transfers to prison inmates. Turns out Niell spent $208,000 — nearly all in a personal loan — to get 902 votes in his last-place finish.

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