Rep. Mary Bentley, Perry County Republican, whose district does not include Arkansas Tech, yesterday continued her attack on the university for what she deems an inadequate expenditure on its agriculture department.

The Local Rundown, a Russellville news outlet, has the back and forth. It indicates Bentley has massaged (distorted might be a better word) budget numbers to make her case. The university provides more accurate accounting.

This remains, I suspect, a matter of priorities. State support of higher education continues to erode and colleges, particularly fast-growing campuses like Tech, must make do with less or else raise student fees. There’s balancing across the board. Bentley and others would like to see more spent on agriculture, which is undoubtedly important but not the only department at the university. Bentley, too, is still frosted about a sex education event on campus that offended her sensibilities. I don’t think you can underestimate this crusading Comstock’s penchant for getting even with her enemies. You’ll recall she’s the representative who threatened retaliation against the Game and Fish Commission for participating in a Forest Service citation of her husband for violating rules about baiting wildlife and ATV use.

Bentley’s letter of criticism was joined again by other religious right-wingers Rep. Trevor Drown and Sens. Greg Standridge and Gary Stubblefield