Favorite

For Carolyn Staley 

In our original list of election endorsements, we overlooked House District 32. The incumbent, Rep. Allen Kerr, deserves some credit for focusing recent attention on double-dipping elected officials and state employees, who sometimes stretched the law to qualify for both retirement and regular paychecks for the same job. But Kerr's attention came after the legislature had already closed most of the loopholes that allowed the practice. Kerr's record lands overall in the debit column for more substantive reasons — votes against a tobacco tax increase to pay for a statewide trauma system and against an expansion of the ARKids program to provide health coverage for more children of the working poor.

Kerr has a progressive opponent with a record that suggests more compassion for the young and the injured. She's Democrat Carolyn Staley, an associate pastor at Pulaski Heights Baptist Church who has a wealth of experience in public service. She's been state services director of the Arkansas Arts Center, executive director of the Arkansas Arts Council, executive director of the Governor's Commission on Adult Literacy and deputy director of the National Institute for Literacy. She has hands-on experience in the work of better educating workers for today's jobs. Her progressive bent is evident in her endorsement of the work of the Arkansas Governor's Commission on Global Warming and its ideas about making homes and businesses more energy efficient and reducing pollution. The Times endorses Carolyn Y. Staley (not to be confused with a former county clerk with the same first and last names) for state House of Representatives.

It's popular to decry civil rights lawyer John Walker and the presumed fortune he's made suing over racial discrimination in the three public school districts in Pulaski County. In fact, he's often worked years at a stretch without compensation. Also, though he's won several significant court-ordered payments, they pale in comparison to the enormous sums paid by the three school districts and the state of Arkansas defending the often indefensible.

*Want to get miffed about legal fees? Take a look at the $315,000 the fiscally distressed Pulaski County School District paid in the first nine months of the year to the Bequette and Billingsley law firm, primarily to attempt to bust a binding legal contract with the district's school teachers. It was a colossal waste of money. The union-busting attempt by a thin Board majority not only lost in court at every turn, it lost at the polls. The single-minded, extralegal effort of the board's four anti-union bullies inspired a resounding defeat of two of them in the September school election. New legal counsel might be among the new teacher-friendly board majority's housekeeping chores. Believers in merit pay should cheer.

Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared

  • Obamascare

    Republicans at long last may be about to see their most fervent wishes and wildest predictions materialize — millions of people losing their medical and hospital coverage, unaffordable insurance, lost jobs, a Medicare financial crisis, mushrooming federal budget deficits and fiscal crises across state governments.
  • Megyn vs. Alex

    As vigorously hyped broadcast events go, Megyn Kelly's televised confrontation with internet conspiracy cultist Alex Jones proved something of a dud.
  • Monkey wrenches

    Junior is 17 now, and shows no interest in driving, or even taking the driving test. It's got his Old Man a little concerned, and not just because we're running a car service for one these days.

Latest in Editorials

  • The end of an era

    We're sad to report that Doug Smith has decided to retire. Though he's been listed as an associate editor on our masthead for the last 22 years, he has in fact been the conscience of the Arkansas Times. He has written all but a handful of our unsigned editorials since we introduced an opinion page in 1992.
    • May 8, 2014
  • A stand for equality

    Last week, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel became the first elected statewide official to express support for same-sex marriage. His announcement came days before Circuit Judge Chris Piazza is expected to rule on a challenge to the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Soon after, a federal challenge of the law is expected to move forward. McDaniel has pledged to "zealously" defend the Arkansas Constitution but said he wanted the public to know where he stood.
    • May 8, 2014
  • Same old, same old

    Remarking as we were on the dreariness of this year's election campaigns, we failed to pay sufficient tribute to the NRA, one of the most unsavory and, in its predictability, dullest of the biennial participants in the passing political parade.
    • May 1, 2014
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

June

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30  

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Megyn vs. Alex

    • But I do agree with him about the interview - Megyn Kelly rocked. Ridicule works.

    • on June 23, 2017
  • Re: Megyn vs. Alex

    • Good point. Your ratios don't make much sense, but a good point. I was not…

    • on June 23, 2017
  • Re: Megyn vs. Alex

    • @ investigator's, " I wonder why Lyons didn't also mention the absurd allegation that Donald…

    • on June 23, 2017
 

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