Here’s the Sunday open line. Also:
* THE BILLIONAIRES CLUB: Louisiana elects the members of its state board of education. Bad idea, unless you happen to be a billionaire and want to control public eduction. An education blogger in Louisiana reports on how $3.5 billion in spending by billionaires swept the elections for most seats on that board. They rode to victory on spending by PACs that back Common Cause, charter schools and the other familiar talking points of the Walton education machine in Arkansas. The blogger, deutsch29, notes that a gubernatorial runoff offers some possibility of the defeat of Republican David Vitter, which could inject a different dynamic in control of education in the state because the governor gets several appointments to the board.
Why drag in the Waltons? Simple. As the Times-Picayune reported, the Waltons — Alice and Jim — contributed, at last count, some $850,000 to various PACs hoping to dictate Louisiana education policy. Billionaires Michael Bloomberg and Eli Broad also chipped in.
In Arkansas, you need only control the governor — who makes Education Board appointments — to control the board. It helps to control the legislature. These are good times for the Waltons in Arkansas, too, in other words, despite one setback in the 2015 legislature. With their money, they can play the long game.