… and boy do the puffed-up peacocks of the Republican minority like to shovel it. It’s tempting to ignore them entirely, they are so often irrelevant. But sometimes, they say things that illustrate why they are doomed to fail.

For example, John Williams reports more in-depth on tobacco silliness today. Rep. Bryan King, who goes by the  title of minority leader, suggested it would be better to close one of the state’s two law schools than to raise the tax on cigarettes. Cheap and meaningless talk. This law school issue is long-settled, a product of a sensitive and prolonged debate that came at the end of the political process, a process that means compromise, calm talk, facts and a buy-in by hundreds of people, from officials to students to alumni. King might as well say he’d rather fund a trauma system by a tax on cohabitation. It has about asmuch chance of passage


Give Mike Beebe credit for a gently derisive response to the nonsense:

The governor ridiculed accusations that he is a tax-and-spender who has loaded his healthcare proposal with pork. “No governor has cut more taxes than Mike Beebe,” Beebe said. “And there’s more to come.”


Told of Rep. King’s remarks about cutting a law school, Beebe said, “I’d don’t think he’d have an easy time doing that, but I’d have fun watching him try.”

“I think it’s a bit overly partisan, don’t you?” Beebe continued. “Overt partisanship is not in the interest of good public policy. I regret that [Rep. King] brought that up.”


The master tells the hungry pup to simmer down. A swat on the nose with a newspaper for soiling himself must have been tempting.

Speaking of taxes: A public relations advisor is pushing freshman LR Republican Rep. Allen Kerr’s website, where Kerr has a finger to the wind on the cigarette tax for a “poll.” Automated dialers of the tobacco lobby will ultimately produce the count he needs to vote against health for Arkansans. PR advice from me to Kerr: Return reporters’ calls when they ask you why YOU WOULD NOT VOTE FOR THE APPROPRIATION FOR LR’S WAR MEMORIAL STAIDUM.