SOMEWHERE IN THE SOUTH PACIFIC: Since my time zone has me wakeful while others in Little Rock might be resting, I didn’t want to delay news in my in-box of the National Rifle Association’s endorsement of Courtney Goodson, in her race for chief justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court.

For those wondering how she’d answer a right-wing business lobby endorsement of her opponent Dan Kemp with hundreds of thousands in dark money ads, this is a strong answer — an endorsement from a powerful right-wing business lobby that has demonstrated strong grassroots voter appeal in past elections.


The Goodson letter to supporters:

Today I wanted to let you know some big news – my campaign has been endorsed by the National Rifle Association. The NRA represents the convictions of hundreds of thousands of Arkansans and I’m honored to be the ONLY candidate for Chief Justice to receive their endorsement.

I believe that our Constitution is the supreme law of the land and will work every day to defend it as your Chief Justice – including the right to keep and bear arms afforded to you in the 2nd amendment. 

Today marks one week until early voting begins and three weeks until Election Day. If you believe we need a Chief Justice who will honor the Constitution, uphold the rule of law, and provide equal justice to all Arkansans, I’d be honored to have your support.

Thank you,

Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Courtney Goodson

Candidate for Chief Justice

I wish I was on the ground to follow up.


Did Goodson SEEK the endorsement of a group that is well-known for battling in court for expansive protection of guns and gun owners? When Goodson says she supports the 2nd Amendment this is a code that, to the NRA, has very clear meaning: No regulation of guns in any way, shape or form and a strict limit on liability for manufacturers, sellers and even many owners of guns.

I think you could argue that a judicial candidate — given the potential for cases involving NRA interests (the open carry question is just now moving through Arkansas courts) — should not seek the NRA’s endorsement nor trumpet it should it be given.


But the back story on the NRA endorsement in this race will be interesting. Surely her opponent, Dan Kemp, has some photos of himself with guns and dead animals to prove his friendliness to the cause.

What HAS Goodson said or done that makes her the gun lobby’s choice? 

Goodson has more — and further attacks on the special interest lobby working for Kemp through secretly financed TV ads — on her Facebook page.

It makes you long for more Clark Masons. He’s the Little Rock lawyer seeking an open Supreme Court seat against Republican/business lobby politico Shawn Womack. Mason is emphasizing his lack of partisan political ties, his long experience and a record notably absent lacking the blotches that mark Womack, not the least his use as a tool by the corporate lobby as senator and his continued lobbying as a judge for judges on account of his Republican ties. He used that position to make an equal rights claim to a $20,000-plus pay raise in a state where the average state employee struggles at far less.