Hutchinson likely to be less of a TV presence | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Hutchinson likely to be less of a TV presence

Posted By on Tue, Aug 25, 2015 at 12:56 PM

click to enlarge asa.jpg
Among the questions that stacked up during my absence along with those about progress in the Naramore child death in Hot Springs and the absence of an attorney general's opinion on open carry was a question about Gov. Asa Hutchinson's rare use of the Arkansans Ask Q&A format on AETN.

Gov. Mike Beebe did the show at least quarterly, and often monthly during legislative periods, his spokesman Matt DeCample recalled when I asked him about their practice.

Hutchinson has appeared once, taking questions from Steve Barnes and viewers in an hour-long program April 6. It seemed uneventful in my cursory review. He basked in the afterglow of a successful legislative session and handled smoothly some questions about some of the hot button issues of the day.

He hasn't been back, not even around the time of the recent special legislative session.

I inquired. Hutchinson's spokesman, J.R. Davis, said the show is a "great format," but the governor likely won't appear as often as his predecessors. "It's tough to get it onto the schedule," he said. "The governor is probably going to do it again in the fall." But he said the appearances "won't happen as often."

Another correspondent mentioned that Hutchinson hadn't made an appearance at Arkansas Governor's School last summer, the first time the namesake has not appeared in the summer program for talented student's long history. Governors have sometimes taken some tough questions there, particularly when Mike Huckabee had the program in his sights for supposedly objectionable material. 

Again, Davis said scheduling was the problem. He said the school was a "fantastic tradition." The governor was out of the country when school opened, the day the governor traditionally speaks. And an alternate time couldn't be arranged, he said.

I'd add as a postscript that there's a growing tradition in politics — bipartisan, though I've encountered it more often on the Republican side — to more closely control public as well as media access and to reduce exposure to unscripted questions. Gaffe avoidance and message control are everything.

But, in that vein, I've actually found Hutchinson somewhat more accessible, particularly than many of his Republican counterparts in Arkansas. I had, in fact, just this morning finished a column for this week making that same point.

Tags: , , , , ,


Favorite

Comments (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Clarke Tucker challenges French HIll to series of debates

    Clarke Tucker, the Democratic candidate for 2nd District Congress, has called on Republican incumbent Rep. French Hill to reconsider his refusal to participate in a televised debate in September and to join him for a series of three debates.
    • Aug 15, 2018
  • Abduction suspect arrested during threatened jump from bridge

    Danny Trent Barrows, 38, wanted for abducting his child earlier in the week, was arrested Wednesday as he attempted to jump off an Interstate 49 bridge near Mountainburg.
    • Aug 15, 2018
  • Wage campaign reports financial backer

    Arkansans for a Fair Wage, the committee backing an increase in the state minimum wage, reported this month a $350,000 contribution from the Sixteen Thirty Fund, a Washington-based nonprofit that has funded advocacy campaigns for social and environmental causes around the country.
    • Aug 15, 2018
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Women's March planned in Arkansas to mark Trump inauguration

    Speaking of Donald Trump and in answer to a reader's question: There will be a women's march in Arkansas on Jan. 21, the day after inauguration, as well as the national march planned in Washington.
    • Dec 30, 2016
  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017
  • Campus gun bill clears committee

    The so-called compromise amendment that will allow anyone 25 or older with a training certificate carry a concealed weapon on public college campuses was approved in a Senate committee this afternoon.
    • Feb 21, 2017

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Slideshows

 

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation