Attorney general continues to resist alcohol ballot initiative; politics, a backer says | Arkansas Blog

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Attorney general continues to resist alcohol ballot initiative; politics, a backer says

Posted By on Sat, Mar 19, 2016 at 8:08 AM

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has issued yet another adverse opinion on a suggested ballot initiative, this one on local options alcohol elections. She rejected the proposed wording on account of ambiguities.

Little Rock lawyer David Couch, who's worked in various alcohol initiative efforts, is seeking to ease petition requirements to call local option elections — making it 15 percent of registered voters in either a dry county or first-class city in a dry county. Current law requires 38 percent.

You can read the ambiguities cited at the link. Couch is exasperated.

This is nothing other than the AG attempting to thwart the initiative process. Her only job is to make sure a ballot title is not misleading. She is using her statutory mandate to do that to force people to rewrite something more to her liking. It's shameful and an abuse of the initiative process our constitution guarantees to the citizens of this state.
The Arkansas Beverage Retailers Association has contributed $187,500 to a committee to support the initiative if it reaches the ballot. But petitions can't be gathered until it's approved as to form by Rutledge.

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