Make way for Gov. Mark Darr | Arkansas Blog

Friday, January 3, 2014

Make way for Gov. Mark Darr

Posted By on Fri, Jan 3, 2014 at 7:17 AM

NO PRISONER: Gov. Beebe intends to go to bowl game even if it means Mark Darr becomes governor.
  • NO PRISONER: Gov. Beebe intends to go to bowl game even if it means Mark Darr becomes governor.

Most interesting news of the day was tucked down toward the end of developments in the Democrat-Gazette's account of the saga of Lt. Gov. Mark Darr and the question of whether he'll resign from office on account of misspending of taxpayer and campaign money.

Gov. Mike Beebe said he would not be held a prisoner in the state.. He's going to Mobile Saturday and Sunday to watch his alma mater, Arkansas State University,  play in a bowl game

Unless he resigns before then, that would make Mark Darr the acting governor. There's no pending legislation to sign or veto, but a range of executive actions would be available to him, including, yes, clemency powers. Remember Jerry Jewell? More practically, maybe he could appoint himself to something, perhaps a paying gig somewhere in state government.

Darr also could call on the State Police to saddle up and drive him to the GoDaddy Bowl. (Recent events suggest he doesn't have the ready cash to buy a plane ticket and presumably he's somewhat chastened now about using the taxpayers' credit card for such.)

In that case, Sen. Michael Lamoureux, the Senate president pro ten, would be next in line.

I hope the rumors I've heard about efforts to assemble a love offering for Darr to encourage him on his way to private life turn out to be unfounded. Offering money for an official action, even if it be resignation, would seem an ill-considered idea at this particular juncture. It will be hard, too, for Darr to seek a deal by which any prosecutorial review is dropped in return for his resignation. Have we heard an Arkansas Republican suggest a similar outcome for the Bookout or Shoffner affair? Both speedily resigned when faced with their problems, but prosecutions roll on. As they should.

PS — Re the  Republicans who've gone silent on Darr under the theory that they might have to vote some day on either impeachment or removal from office. Balderdash. The question of whether he should resign from public office in the face of  the admitted transgressions is not a legal question. It's a public ethics question. You could even believe a resignation is in order, but as a member of the legislature decide his transgressions didn't rise to impeachment and removal. This is just a dodge. Is he or ain't he worthy of holding office based on the abundant public record of acts that he has admitted?

AMPLIFICATION: I'm reminded that procedures on clemency were changed after Sen. Jerry Jewell of Little Rock, acting as governor, granted clemency in a high-profile criminal case. All executive clemencies now sit for a 30-day review before becoming final, so Beebe would have to be absent for an extended period before an acting governor could pardon or release anyone.

PPS — Stephens Media reports that Darr never availed himself of the training sessions on campaign finance that the Ethics Commission offers all over the state each campaign season to prevent candidates from going astray. If he truly didn't know better, he has only himself to blame, in other words.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (13)

Showing 1-13 of 13

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-13 of 13

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Eclipse-o-rama underway

    Times photographer Brian Chilson is in Riverfront Park participating in eclipsealypse. Here's a shot of people trying out their safety glasses.
    • Aug 21, 2017
  • Corporate welfare is a failure. So why does it keep increasing?

    Huge study says corporate welfare is inefficient and unproductive. But politicians keep doing it. Wonder why.
    • Aug 21, 2017
  • Police identify three dead in Birchwood

    Police have now released some details about the apparent slaying Sunday of two children and suicide of the man who killed them on Birchwood Drive in West Little Rock. Court recordx indicate the suspect had a history of domestic violence.
    • Aug 21, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Auditor Lea caught not telling the truth

    State Auditor Andrea Lea, who began her tenure in statewide office with a degree of competence unseen in some other Republican counterparts (think Treasurer Dennis Milligan particularly), is becoming more deeply mired in a political scandal.
    • Mar 4, 2016
  • Free Zinn book for Arkansas teachers

    Arkansas teachers! Get your free Howard Zinn book here! Whether Kim Hendren likes it or not.
    • Mar 3, 2017
  • Another Republican miracle-working governor

    Great piece in Washington Post on the budget crisis in Louisiana. Big tax cuts and corporate welfare will do that to a state, particularly to a state whose previous governor, Republican Bobby Jindal, refused to join the Obamacare-funded Medicaid expansion. There's a lesson there for Arkansas.
    • Mar 4, 2016

Most Shared

  • Lynchings hidden in the history of the Hot Springs Confederate monument

    Hot Springs twice erupted into the kind of violence that has its roots in the issues left unresolved by the Civil War, and both times, it happened right where that monument to Confederate soldiers stands today.
  • Take yourself there: Mavis Staples coming to LR for Central High performance

    Gospel and R&B singer and civil rights activist Mavis Staples, who has been inspiring fans with gospel-inflected freedom songs like "I'll Take You There" and "March Up Freedom's Highway" and the poignant "Oh What a Feeling" will come to Little Rock for the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the desegregation of Central High.
  • Klan's president

    Everything that Donald Trump does — make that everything that he says — is calculated to thrill his lustiest disciples. But he is discovering that what was brilliant for a politician is a miscalculation for a president, because it deepens the chasm between him and most Americans.
  • On Charlottesville

    Watching the Charlottesville spectacle from halfway across the country, I confess that my first instinct was to raillery. Vanilla ISIS, somebody called this mob of would-be Nazis. A parade of love-deprived nerds marching bravely out of their parents' basements carrying tiki torches from Home Depot.

Most Viewed

  • Police identify three dead in Birchwood

    Police have now released some details about the apparent slaying Sunday of two children and suicide of the man who killed them on Birchwood Drive in West Little Rock. Court recordx indicate the suspect had a history of domestic violence.
  • University of Texas removes Confederate statues

    Confederate statuary was removed overnight from a prominent spot on the University of Texas campus because they symbolize white supremacy and neo-Nazism, the university president said.
  • Eclipse day. Woodstock?

    I was amused by the excitement of a NASA scientist over today's eclipse, as reported by CNN.
  • Open line and Civil War update

    More Confederacy defenders were on hand in Bentonville against imagined threats to a one of hte Confederate statues put up long after the Civil War to spin a narrative about the noble Lost Cause.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation