Burnett, Hutchinson switch votes after advancing discrimination bill out of committee | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Burnett, Hutchinson switch votes after advancing discrimination bill out of committee

Posted By on Sat, Mar 28, 2015 at 10:24 AM

CHANGED HIS MIND: After he was the deciding vote to send HB 1228 out of a Senate committee, Sen. David Burnett now says it's unconstitutional. - BRIAN CHILSON
  • Brian Chilson
  • CHANGED HIS MIND: After he was the deciding vote to send HB 1228 out of a Senate committee, Sen. David Burnett now says it's unconstitutional.

Sen. David Burnett (D-Osceola) said he made a mistake in voting for a bill that would allow legal discrimination against gay people in a Senate committee, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported today. He voted against the bill in the full Senate yesterday. 

Burnett said when he listened to the debate, he decided HB 1228 was unconstitutional.

Burnett provided the decisive fifth vote to advance HB 1228 out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. With four of the the eight seats in the committee held by Democrats, Judiciary is one of the few committees Democrats can influence if they vote en masse. A bill requires five votes to advance. 

Burnett voted against the bill the first time it came through committee, but changed his vote on Tuesday. He told the D-G he didn't have "any original reasons" for advancing the bill, though he did admit that Gov. Asa Hutchinson had asked him to vote for the bill and he had asked the governor to appoint Jo Ann Henton to the Mississippi County Quorum Court, but there was no "quid pro quo."

You'd hope not. A Quorum Court position in exchange for legalized discrimination? Meanwhile, Hutchinson spokesman J.R. Davis told the D-G the governor hadn't decided who to put in the Quorum Court position, but it probably won't be Henton.  

Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson (R*-Little Rock), the governor's nephew, was the lone Republican voting against HB 1228. Like Burnett, he changed his vote after advancing the bill out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. 

After the vote, he invoked Jesus' teachings to the AP.

"I think there are instances where religious activities are over-regulated, but in my estimation that does not outweigh the chance that somebody uses religion to do what Jesus would not want to be done in his name, which is to discriminate against somebody and offend a brother or sister."

*A previous version of this post incorrectly described Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson as a Democrat. He's a Republican.

Tags: , , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (32)

Showing 1-32 of 32

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-32 of 32

Add a comment

More by Lindsey Millar

  • The PR Stunt Edition

    Little Rock’s Amazon PR stunt, the Tom Cotton to the CIA rumor, French Hill and Puerto Rico and UA-Little Rock's football future — all covered on this week's podcast.
    • Oct 20, 2017
  • The First Amendment, Yo Edition

    The latest in the legal fight to stop a law that would prevent Planned Parenthood from performing abortions in Arkansas, the cancellation of a rap show in Little Rock and its First Amendment implications, a stunning investigative report on drug court defendants being forced to work for free for Arkansas poultry companies and bellicose Tom Cotton — all covered on this week's podcast.
    • Oct 13, 2017
  • Come with the Arkansas Times to the Johnny Cash Heritage Festival

    After several years of Arkansas State University in Jonesboro hosting benefit concerts to raise money for the restoration of Johnny Cash's boyhood home, this year the Johnny Cash Heritage Festival debuts in Dyess just outside the Cash homeplace. And of course the Arkansas Times is chartering a bus to be there. The lineup is spectacular: Kris Kristofferson (one of the greatest songwriters of all-time easily), Rosanne Cash, Joanne Cash and Tommy Cash and Buddy Jewel.
    • Oct 13, 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
  • The inspiring Hillary Clinton

    Hillary Clinton's campaign for president illustrates again the double standard applied to women. Some writers get it. They even find the supposedly unlikable Clinton inspiring.
    • Oct 16, 2016
  • 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

  • Discussion: State killing of the mentally ill

    The Arkansas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty and others will have a forum on mental illness and the death penalty at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Bowen School of Law's Friday Courtroom.

Most Viewed

  • Dear Little Rock,

    This is not a love letter, Little Rock, though we do love you. This is an intervention.
  • The Monday Democrat-Gazette was slimmer this morning

    Did your Monday morning Arkansas Democrat-Gazette include a business section?
  • Hog football: The lawyers take over

    If you believe social media, it's all over but the post-season buyout for Razorback football coach Bret Bielema. That means, in turn, that the issue of what the coach's contract buyout is worth is not just an academic question.
  • Dental association rips Hutchinson appointee to dental board

    The Arkansas Dental Association has criticized Gov. Asa Hutchinson for not taking its recommendation for a dental regulatory board appointment and appointing instead someone with a record of dental practice violations in the early 1990s.
  • Sabin raises $100,000 for mayor's race

    Michael Cook, a political consultant, has issued a news release saying state Rep. Warwick Sabin has raised $100,000 for his race for Little Rock mayor against incumbent Mayor Mark Stodola.

Most Recent Comments



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