Several legislative candidacies have floated across my computer in recent days, all setting up general-election contests:

  • Reginald “Ray” Prunty has announced as a Democratic candidate for House District 59 (northwest Jonesboro and parts of Craighead County), a seat currently held by Republican Rep. Jack Ladyman. Prunty, an Army veteran who worked 35 years for Xerox, now operates Legends Barbeque in Jonesboro.  He aims to focus on education and economic development. He also said in a release: “Politics seems to have evolved away from focusing on the actual needs of our communities in exchange for nationalized issues. We need to change that; we need to make local need the
    top priority at the Capitol.”
  • Howard Beaty, president and CEO of First State Bank of Crossett, has announced as a candidate for House District 9  (Drew and Ashley counties) held by Democratic Rep. LeAnne Burch of Monticello. You know Beaty is a Republican because he uses the stock boilerplate phrase found in every Republican campaign announcement news release. He is opposed to women’s medical rights, favors tax policy that hits the poor harder than the rich and thinks no one should be prohibited from having military-style assault rifles with expanded ammo magazines. Oh, sorry. The stock phrase is actually this: “He is pro-life, pro-business, and a staunch defender of the Second Amendment.”
  • The Democrat-Gazette reported this morning on the expected entry of Republican Bob Thomas into the Senate District 32 race. Democratic Sen. Will Bond isn’t seeking re-election and former Democratic Rep. Clarke Tucker has announced for the seat. Thomas was whacked 58-42 in a race for 2nd District Congress against Vic Snyder in 2000, his campaign managed by his sister, now-Sen. Missy Irvin. Tucker lost a race for Congress against Republican French Hill in 2018, but he carried Pulaski County by an overwhelming margin, including defeating Hill easily in Senate District 32 where both Hill and Tucker live.

UPDATE: Jed Duggar has apparently confirmed the report that he’ll run for House District 89, held by Democratic Rep. Megan Godfrey. You know what to do. Send her money.

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