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It was a good week for Arkansas school teachers 

It was a good week for ...

ARKANSAS SCHOOL TEACHERS. The legislature passed and Gov. Mike Beebe signed a bill that will use $43 million in state surplus money to keep a hike in teacher health insurance premiums at 10 percent, staving off a 50 percent hike. The Senate created a task force to study public employee insurance.

NEW BLOOD IN THE 2ND DISTRICT. Congressman Tim Griffin announced he would not seek reelection, leaving former North Little Rock Mayor Pat Hays, a Democrat, as the only announced candidate for the seat. Names mentioned to run in the Republican primary: Little Rock banker French Hill and Rep. Ann Clemmer of Benton.

NEW CANDIDATE IN THE 4TH DISTRICT. James Lee Witt, whose work as heading up FEMA under President Bill Clinton was widely praised, will seek the Democratic nomination. What a happy change from Koch-head Tom Cotton, who used his two years in the U.S. House as a warm-up for a Senate run, that would be. Witt will face Janis Percefull in the primary. Rep. Bruce Westerman and Tommy Moll will face each other in the Republican primary.

DEMOCRATS. New polling shows that the Tea-Party-backed government shutdown, which Standard & Poor's estimated cost the economy $24 billion, hurt the Republican Party.

It was a bad week for ...

SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BY SCHOOL TEACHERS. Mount St. Mary Academy asked for, and received, the resignation of an English teacher and coach who married her long-time girlfriend in a legal ceremony in New Mexico. Thousands of people signed a petition asking the school to reinstate the teacher, former students of the Catholic school protested and Human Rights Campaign director Chad Griffin came to Little Rock to hold a press conference about discrimination against same-sex couples.

ARKANSAS RAZORBACKS. The Alabama Crimson Tide swamped the Hogs 52 to nothing. Zero. Zed. Nada.

HARRISON. A sign reading "Anti-Racist is a Code Word for Anti-White" was erected in the north Arkansas city that has been trying to reverse the racist reputation it earned from its earlier sundown law.

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