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Sunday, June 29, 2014

Sunday, June 29, 2014 - 07:53:00

More questions about insurance 'fix'

One problem with this agreed-on special legislative sessions is that thousands of people affected by the agreements don't know what they mean until it's too late. See the school health insurance proposal.

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Sunday, June 29, 2014 - 07:37:00

Shortcomings found in military hospital system

The New York Times has a massive report today on a review of the performance of the country's military hospital system — not the veterans system. It is not a pretty picture.

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Saturday, June 28, 2014

Saturday, June 28, 2014 - 16:46:00

The open line: Plus, when Walmart withdrew board offer to gay executive and another LR homicide

The line is open. We'll close with a couple of items:

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Flake & Kelley

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Today's headlines: From monument compromise to fraud

Saturday, June 28, 2014 - 16:36:00

Insurance 'fix' preserves legislators' own insurance, but not other part-timers

Could the reason that public employee part-timers won't lose health insurance under the legislative "fix" to be approved next week be because legislators want to be sure nobody raises any questions about the gold-plated insurance coverage THEY enjoy?

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Saturday, June 28, 2014 - 08:58:00

School employees decry the patch on insurance

The legislature may think they've done solomonic work by cobbling up a supposed school insurance "fix" that doesn't require an additional dime of state money and further punishes both school and state employees with no restrictions on coverage. They better think again.

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Saturday, June 28, 2014 - 07:39:00

Yes, the Arkansas Constitution can be unconstitutional

Yes, the Arkansas Constitution can be held to be unconstitutional. A trip back to 1958 and the case over Little Rock school desegregation.

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Saturday, June 28, 2014 - 06:54:00

Times change: Gays on the bench, women in the legislature

Times change. Look no farther than women in the Arkansas legislature and a gay man recommended for a federal judgeship by Republican senators in Texas.

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Flake & Kelley

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STAFF BLOGS: ARKANSAS BLOG

Today's headlines: From monument compromise to fraud

Friday, June 27, 2014

Friday, June 27, 2014 - 17:40:00

Today in Arkansas: Hillary visits Little Rock

On today's episode: Gambling and the special session. Hillary visits Little Rock.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 17:30:00

The Sponsored by Oaklawn Special Session Edition

The upcoming special session of the Arkansas General Assembly, the latest on the bid to overturn the state's voter ID law, a split emerging among Arkansas Supreme Court justices and the politics surrounding a proposal to build a Mapco on 3rd and Broadway in downtown Little Rock — all covered on this week's edition.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 16:18:00

TGIF open line: Plus, a historic session and a new Supreme Court clerk

The week's done. At top is a photo from the Arkansas House, which will hold its part of next week's three-day special session in the Old State House because of repair work at the Capitol. Also in final news notes: The official announcement of a new Arkansas Supreme Court clerk, a selection that followed internal court bickering, I reported yesterday.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 14:32:00

Beebe: Who needs transparency? It's expensive.

Gov. Beebe explains: Get enough legislators behind some idea in secret and I'll add it to a special session call. It's efficient and cheap, he claims. Expensive to the public, though.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 14:25:00

Jack Wagoner answers: What are your thoughts on Sen. Jason Rapert and the Family Council's opposition to same-sex marriage?

The latest in our video interview series with Jack Wagoner, one of the lawyers who successfully overturned Arkansas's ban on same-sex marriage in state court.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 14:22:00

Bobby Roberts meet David Johnson. Fayetteville library goes big

Good article in the Fayetteville Flyer about Fayetteville library expansion plans. Whether library director David Johnson has been influenced by Little Rock library empire builder Bobby Roberts or not, he thinks on an equally grand scale.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 13:47:00

Hard wait in Little Rock for Hillary's 'Hard Choices'

Some 150 people were already in line at 7 a.m. this morning for the 11:30 a.m. book signing by Hillary Clinton at the Chenal Walmart Supercenter. About 1,000 were expected to make it through with a book — one per customer. She was greeted warmly during her two-hour signing stint for her "Hard Choices.'

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 12:37:00

UPDATE: Oaklawn wins again, lottery restriction bill makes the call

Here's the latest on the Oaklawn bill to prohibit the Arkansas Lottery from adding keno-style games. It's a letter from House Democratic leader Eddie Armstrong to members. He wants to know how many would vote for the lottery bill Oaklawn is fighting.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 12:18:00

Maggio settles with state Ethics Commission on excess contributions

Circuit Judge Mike Maggio has reached an agreed settlement with the state Ethics Commission on excessive contributions to his since-abandoned race for state Court of Appeals. He got a letter of caution and paid a $750 fine.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 11:57:00

State employees object to school insurance proposal

The Arkansas State Employees Association, which represents roughly 16,000 state employees, has belatedly raised objections to the shape of the school employee insurance legislation that has consensus support at next week's special session. Spouses of state employees now face being forced onto more expensive insurance plans at work because of the legislation.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 08:46:00

School superintendents surrender on insurance bill

Richard Abernathy, head of the school administrators lobby, says it won't oppose the school insurance bill in next week's special session because it would be "fruitless."

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 08:25:00

Waiting in line for Hillary in Little Rock

Hillary Clinton will be at the Chenal Walmart Supercenter at 11:30 a.m. to sign her book "Hard Choices." A line has already formed, as this shot from Twitter shows.

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Friday, June 27, 2014 - 07:10:00

There's gambling; and then there's Oaklawn. Meet the hypocrites

The rest of the media has now learned what we've been saying for days — the Oaklawn casino owners in Hot Springs are behind the fierce push to get a bill on the legislative session agenda to prevent gambling expansion by the Arkansas lottery. Here, we name the hypocrites who think more gambling is OK for Oaklawn but not anybody else.

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