It was a bad week for Martha Shoffner 

It was a good week for ...

TIM GRIFFIN. He's expected to announce for lieutenant governor on Thursday. From Congress and the supposedly powerful Ways and Means Committee to the most irrelevant state constitutional office? Griffin badly wants to become governor; the Lt. Gov.'s office would put him in position to make a challenge for it in 2018.

LEGISLATIVE ETHICS. A proposal to suspend an Arkansas House of Representatives rule prohibiting campaign fundraising during the legislative session won't reach the House floor despite approval by a House subcommittee. Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-Hot Springs), a candidate for Congress in the Fourth District, first raised the issue.

A LONG DUE ARREST. After weeks of rumors that action was expected soon, an arrest was made of a suspect in the string of arsons that did millions of dollars in damage to the Forest Place apartments on University Avenue. The suspect, Lacey Rae Moore, 43, was taken into custody Monday. She was charged with five counts of arson, two counts of arson that caused injuries to firefighters and possession of an explosive device.

It was a bad week for ...

DRIVING IN CENTRAL ARKANSAS. Friday's snowstorm caught drivers off guard. Hundreds of accidents were reported. Dozens of cars were abandoned. Some drivers were forced to spend the night in their vehicles, road conditions were so bad.

MICHAEL LAMOUREUX. The Senate president took control of former Lt. Gov. Mark Darr's orphaned four-person staff based on a constitutional reading that Attorney General Dustin McDaniel and many others say is incorrect.

MARTHA SHOFFNER. The federal government tacked 10 new mail fraud charges on the former Arkansas treasurer for allegedly transferring campaign contributions to pay for personal charges on her credit card, including cosmetics and clothing. The news has to be unsettling to other Arkansas politicians who, evidence suggests, have used campaign money for personal expenses, including clothing. To varying degrees, former Sen. Paul Bookout and former Lt. Gov. Mark Darr were found to have charged personal expenses to credit cards paid with campaign money before ethics investigations ended in sanctions and agreements to pay back money.


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