A note of context for the decision Friday by the Republican-controlled state Election Commission to name the finance director of the Arkansas Republican Party, Heather McKim, to be deputy director (and perhaps future director when the commission is authorized to fill the slot of departing director Justin Clay.)
A Democrat on the commission raised some concern about maintaining a nonpolitical appearance. McKim was recommended by the bumptious Republican Commissioner Stu Soffer, who’s been in the news for displaying a gun during a Jefferson County Election Commmission tangle and also for suggesting in an e-mail that he could get a county job for another GOP operative through political influence on other local officials. Despite objections from the Democratic Party, GOP State Chair Doyle Webb reappointed Soffer to the commission last week.
Soffer said McKim’s managerial experience made her the best candidate. Which may be true. But just for the record:
In a previous marriage to former Saline County Republican JP and Bryant Police Chief Mark Kizer, McKim was known as Heather Kizer. She was elected under that name in 2010 as city clerk after joining mayoral candidate Jill Dabbs in an attempt to be allowed to be listed on the ballot as Republican Jill Dabbs and Republican Heather Kizer.
When McKim was defeated in a re-election bid for city clerk in 2014, State Republican Chair Doyle Webb, a Saline County resident, hired McKim for the Arkansas GOP job.
The Election Commission oversees elections in the state of Arkansas. The proof of nonpartisanship lies ahead.
After we last wrote about Soffer, he asked that I use an updated photo and supplied this one (he identified himself as the one in the cheap suit):
And while we’re in the archives and talking about Saline County politics, here’s an old favorite from a GOP fund-raiser of Doyle Webb and Mark Kizer, McKim’s ex. Webb was picking up a little Bryant city attorney work at the time. You really do need a scorecard for Saline politics. Mayor Dabbs’ husband is also a former Saline JP. They have a divorce action pending.