Monday, February 22, 2010

Beebe--Lincoln needs to "educate" Arkansans to win

The folks at Politico caught up with Arkansas' Governor Mike Beebe on Monday and peppered him with questions on health care and Senator Blanche Lincoln. The popular governor ducked and bobbed on several questions, but when asked if he thinks the embattled Lincoln's seat is still winnable he replied, "Yes, I think it’s winnable and yes, I think she can win."

Lincoln's pitiful polling of late recently led conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer to remark, "Poor Blanche Lincoln couldn't even compete with Mussolini" on Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor. The last several polls by Rasmussen have shown Lincoln trailing at least four potential Republican opponents, and the latest had all four ahead by at least 8 points.

Beebe believes Lincoln's campaign cash will be enough to overcome her lack of popularity in Arkansas by November. "
She’s got a lot of money, she needs to spend it wisely to educate," said the governor.

But we would argue the electorate is educated on Lincoln, and her money won't be enough to "reeducate" us.

The Senator's popularity has consistently collapsed with virtually every vote she cast in support of President Barack Obama's Socialist platform. On TARP, the auto industry bailout, budgets that created record deficits, increasing the federal debt limit, and Obamacare, Lincoln has stood with Obama and against the will of a large majority of Arkansas voters. Each time her "Yea" was heard by Arkansans, her poll numbers plummeted.

Lincoln's willingness to abandon the clear will of the Arkansas electorate and walk arm-in-arm with Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to support their proposed government takeover of the US health care system was likely the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.

Because passage in the Senate required 60 votes to overcome a Republican filibuster, Reid and Obama needed every single Democrat. Lincoln's status as one of the final two holdouts indicates she understood the tightrope she was walking. She understood the people of Arkansas were strongly opposed to Obamacare, but she succumbed to the pressure of Reid and Obama.

She could have chosen to represent the clear will of Arkansas voters, and cast the vote that would have killed Obama's dream of socialized medicine in America. But instead she chose to stand with her liberal buddies from Chicago and Las Vegas, against her constituents in Arkansas.

Governor Beebe and Blanche Lincoln may think voters in Arkansas can be "educated", but we've been educating ourselves on Lincoln ever since she began marching in lockstep with Reid and Obama.

Krauthammer was right, and Arkansas voters are already educated on the upcoming Senate race.

Senator Lincoln should start packing.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Stop Obamacare w/ Free Faxes to Legislators

Grassroots protests, town hall meetings, and even a Republican victory in one of the most Democrat Senate seats in the country have all failed to finish off today's great threat to the America we know and love. But the good folks at Citizens in Action are arming American voters for the next battle in this all out war for our way of life!

Though President Barack Hussein Obama has promised to listen to and incorporate opposition ideas with his planned government takeover of the US health care system, it's now becoming obvious his promises were nothing more than a feint intended to lull the US electorate into believing We the People had stopped him and his latest planned intrusion into our lives.

Obamacare is still very much alive, and moving.

Congressional Democrats and their unscrupulous Chicago gangster who leads them are once again promising to ram their Obamacare bill down our throats. Tomorrow, President Obama has promised to reveal his "compromise" plan which he says "will include the best parts" of the two different bills previously passed by the US House and Senate. Harry Reid promised yesterday he will pass this bill within 60 days using a parliamentary maneuver reserved for budget bills that will enable him to bypass a Republican filibuster.

The jackass party is abandoning one of the most essential ideals that led our founding fathers to break with England and form these United States. They are completely ignoring the unequivocal statement in the preamble of our Declaration of Independece that "Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed..." Instead, Democrats are giving the American electorate the middle finger and telling voters, "We don’t give a damn what you want!”

Our last hope to stop this train wreck is to communicate to our elected Senators and Representatives they WILL lose in November if they stand with Obama and his henchmen against the American people! Citizens in Action has made it easy for everyone to do just that.

The organization has a free Fax Center (they do accept donations) that allows you to send up to three faxes on different matters to all your elected officials with a few simple clicks! Their latest fax (text below) demands our legislators refuse to go on ignoring OUR will, and refuse to vote with Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, and President Obama to destroy our health care system.

Please click here to send your fax(es) today!

The text of the FREE health care fax CIA will send in your name can be read below:
TO: [Representatives’ names go here]

“All may be quiet on the Healthcare front”—making it appear that Obama’s Healthcare Reform legislation is stalled or even dead, but the American people are not fooled! We are well aware that the silence surrounding the reconciliation of the House and Senate versions of the Healthcare Reform bills and the talk of “bi-partisanship” is nothing more than a smoke screen designed to fool us into thinking our representatives are actually listening to us.

As for the healthcare “summit,” it is merely a propaganda tool and has nothing to do with creating a bipartisan solution. Furthermore, a “bipartisan solution” is meaningless unless both parties are listening to the citizenry. Currently, the representatives of both parties are doing a very poor job of listening to their constituents.

Perhaps you remember Speaker Pelosi’s comments that Healthcare legislation would be passed—even if it means, as she stated, “pole-vaulting in…” Senator Reid is busy “twisting arms” and making sweet “back-room” deals in order to change the minds of any would-be no votes. And now, as the Democrats have lost control of the 60th Senate vote, they are, once again, talking about employing the “Nuclear Option,” which would require only 52 votes to get Healthcare Reform passed. And you want us to believe you are actually listening to the American people?

As OUR elected representatives, we demand that you listen to us! WE elected you to office—NOT Obama, Pelosi, and Reid!

We do NOT want any part of the Healthcare Reform legislation currently being considered for reconciliation! We want the whole mess thrown out and started over from scratch!

You see—we are not stupid! We recognize the need for some type of Healthcare Reform…BUT, we want any Healthcare legislation to actually concern Health and Care…not PORK! We do not want the unconstitutional, government-controlled, mandatory Healthcare that is being considered. We DO want Healthcare Reform to address TORT Reform and the ability to buy insurance across state lines. We do NOT want our tax dollars used for abortion funding and we certainly do not want to provide coverage for illegal immigrants! These are just a few of the many issues we would like addressed when considering Healthcare Reform. We’ve been voicing our opinions concerning these issues and others for over a year now.

Except for the sneaky, manipulative moves of Obama, Pelosi, and Reid, Healthcare legislation, as currently written, doesn’t appear to be going anywhere—so….

Isn’t it time to try something different and actually LISTEN TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE? Don’t patronize Obama, Pelosi, and Reid “just because…” They WON”T be there for you when you need them in November—do the right thing and vote against Healthcare Reform reconciliation—and the American people WILL be there for you!

Thanks! And keep up the good fight!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Rick Crawford Meet & Greet in Lonoke County

The Tea Party of Lonoke County is proud to sponsor a meet & greet so voters can get to know a conservative candidate who stood up and announced his candidacy for Arkansas' 1st District Congressional seat BEFORE Marion Berry chose not to run again this year. Rick has been a true friend and ally of the Tea Party movement. He's participated in and spoken at Tea Party events across the 1st District since last spring.

Join us in Cabot to meet and visit with conservative Republican candidate for Congress Rick Crawford in Arkansas' 1st Congressional District.

We'll be serving hot dogs and hamburgers at 6:00 pm on Thursday, March 11 at the following address:

903 Southhaven Ave.
Cabot, AR 72023

Please RSVP at our event page on Facebook if you plan to attend because this location will only accommodate 30 or so people. If more wish to attend, we'll find another location large enough to accommodate everyone.

*The Lonoke County Tea Party has not endorsed any candidate for the 2010 election cycle. This is posted by the editor for informational purposes only and should not be construed as an endorsement of any candidate.

Friday, February 12, 2010

To win in 2010, GOP needs statewide participation

The election year is now upon us, and polls undeniably show a strong majority of Arkansans are mad as Hell about what’s been happening in Washington.

Democrats in our Congressional delegation have overwhelmingly voted to support nearly every plank in President Obama’s platform that failed to stimulate the economy, failed to create jobs, and failed to take a strong stand against our terrorist enemies around the globe.

Two of those Democrats, Vic Snyder and Marion Berry, realized they’d followed President Obama too far down his Socialist path and have already chosen not to run for reelection. But Blanche Lincoln and Mike Ross believe they can use their millions in out-of-state cash to convince voters to ignore their votes for Obama’s Socialist agenda.

Other Democrats are stepping into the voids left by the Snyder and Berry announcements. These will claim to be different than those they hope to replace, but we’ve seen how effectively Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid bend Democrats to their will.

We need clear alternatives, candidates who will go to Washington and represent us. Candidates who will challenge the establishment and stand up for what’s right.

The problem is that Washington, DC establishment Republicans also failed to uphold Arkansas’ conservative values when they had the opportunity.

That’s why we need real change in 2010; ordinary men and women who will go Washington and take the extraordinary step of challenging the status quo, men and women who understand their job is to uphold the US Constitution and make the country a better place for our sons, daughters, and grandchildren.

Since both parties have dropped the ball recently, some are tempted to support independent or third party candidates. But history shows us these candidates have almost no chance to win. This year, they are more likely to split the conservative vote and guarantee at least two more years of the Obama Hell that we’ve suffered these past months.

Fortunately, we have an opportunity to accomplish our goals. But it will take a concerted effort on the part of conservative voters across the state.

Historically, participation in Arkansas’ Republican primary has been extremely light.

In 2004, only 54,000 of Arkansas’ 3 million residents voted in the GOP primary. More importantly, fully 41% of those reside in three counties. Eight of Arkansas’ 75 counties supplied over 67% of voters in the 2004 GOP Senate primary. This resulted in voters from a handful of counties actually selecting the GOP nominee.

If the same pattern holds this year, voters in 67 Arkansas counties will have virtually no say in who will run on the Republican ticket. If we hope to nominate a conservative candidate who can win statewide, we need that candidate to be chosen by voters statewide.

If we again allow only 8 counties to choose the GOP nominee, Arkansas will likely send another crop of Obama-Pelosi-Reid lap dogs back to Washington to continue on the path of destroying our country.

The Republican Party is counting on the Tea Party energy and emotion to deliver in the fall for whatever candidate wins the GOP nomination in May. But they may well be counting their chickens before they hatch.

Most Tea Party activists aren’t looking for Republican candidates to support, they’re looking for conservatives. And not just Republican candidates who say they’re conservative during the campaign. These disgruntled voters have had enough of experienced politicians who say one thing on the campaign trail but go to DC and play the game.

2010 could be an historic year for the Republican Party of Arkansas. There are more candidates running as Republicans than we’ve ever seen. The US Senate race alone has 9 declared candidates even though the GOP couldn’t field an opponent to run against Mark Pryor in 2008.

But not all of these candidates will satisfy the Tea Party activists’ hunger for honesty, integrity, and responsibility in their candidate of choice this year. In races across the state; veterans, small business owners, and other non-politicians stood up last spring and said “I’ll stand up for limited government, fiscal responsibility, and accountability against the Obama-Pelosi-Reid lap dogs” --before establishment Republicans realized Berry, Snyder, and Lincoln were vulnerable.

Over the last few weeks we’ve had several professional politicians and other Washington insiders jumping in these races, attending out-of-state fundraisers and claiming they’re the best candidates because they’re “electable.” Our question to them is, “Where were you when Tea Partiers and Town Hall attendees were challenging these once powerful politicians last year?” These are the candidates who will turn off Tea Party voters.

If we hope to elect “real people” who will represent Tea Party activists at the state and federal level, we need voters statewide to participate in the GOP primary. We need GOP nominees who voters in every county can support and we’ll only achieve that if voters in every county take part in their nomination.

If you agree with the 60% of Arkansans who want to stop the Obama-Pelosi-Reid train to Socialize the American economy, encourage your friends and family to vote in the GOP primary on May 18.

Help us nominate real conservatives who will represent Arkansas values in all levels of government.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rick Crawford Campaign HQ Open House Saturday

The following invitation was distributed by the Crawford for Congress Campaign.

You Are Invited!

The Crawford for Congress Campaign would like to cordially invite you to attend the grand opening of the Crawford for Congress Campaign Headquarters this Saturday starting at 10am!
This grand opening is yet another chapter in the Crawford for Congress Campaign to take traditional American values back to Washington in a candidate that has the experience, insight, and ability to make a difference in Washington! Rick Crawford is the Statesman that we need to make a difference for the people of the First District!

WHEN: Saturday, February 13th

WHERE: 1920 South Church Street, Jonesboro

WHAT TIME: Begins at 10am, Press Conference by Rick at 1030am, and will go until Noon.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Parking will be available in the adjacent parking lot in front of Gracy's Cafe & Wells-Fargo Mortgage. Parking will also be available next door at NAPA Auto Parts.

DIRECTIONS: The Crawford for Congress H.Q. is located directly across Church Street from Walgreens on Highland and Union and is also across Highland Avenue from McDonalds in Jonesboro.

We look forward to you coming out on Saturday to visit with Rick about his campaign! We will also have free campaign materials that you can take with you including new Crawford for Congress bumper stickers.

This will be a great opportunity for you to visit with other campaign supporters as together we work to send an experienced leader to Washington who will be a trusted voice for his constituents!

For more information or directions please call the campaign headquarters at 870-203-0540.

*The Lonoke County Tea Party has not endorsed any candidate for the 2010 election cycle. This is posted by the editor for informational purposes only and should not be construed as an endorsement of any candidate.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Our children are going to pay

by Curtis Coleman, conservative GOP candidate for US Senate

Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) voted to borrow another $1.9 TRILLION this past week…and our children are going to pay. What kind of immorality is this that we are recklessly throwing away our children’s future? What happened to us that we care more about our comfort than their freedom?

Of course, Sen. Lincoln had little choice since she and her cohorts in Congress have been consistently spending more than is coming in. It’s called deficit spending. If it continues, it inevitably leads to bankruptcy. Which is where the U.S. is headed on a high-speed train.

There is a very important distinction between a deficit and the debt. Deficit spending means we’re spending more than we’re taking in. Debt is what results from deficit spending. The deficit is how much we are borrowing. The debt is how much we have already borrowed from lenders like China.

So, as a country we have already borrowed $12,400,000,000,000 to finance our deficit spending. That’s our debt. President Obama is now asking us to spend $1,700,000,000,000 more in 2010 than the federal government’s projected income. That amount will be our deficit this year. The result? We’ll have a new total debt of $14,100,000,000,000 at the end of year. Let me bring this closer to home. This debt is not the money somebody else owes. This is the money you owe. The only money the government has is your money.

Your portion is $45,000. Pay up, please! Don’t have it? Well, then we’ll have to borrow it from somebody (probably the Chinese if they’ll still lend it to us). So our children will have to pay it back – plus interest.

Is this really okay with you?

The POLR (Pelosi/Obama/Lincoln/Reid) Administration is now talking about reducing the deficit starting next year. (That’s kind of like me starting a diet- tomorrow.) All that means is that we’ll slow how fast we’re still borrowing money! We must stop deficit spending, but we must also attack the debt. Our country’s debt is a clear and present danger, an urgent matter of national security, and it must be attacked as our worst enemy.

What is the solution?

Well, let’s start with the profoundly obvious: Spend less than we have. When our outgo exceeds our income, our overhead will be our downfall. So, we can either increase our income or decrease our outgo. Or do both!

First, how do we increase our income? The liberals believe we do that by increasing taxes. That approach seems to make sense – but it doesn’t. Our economic history has consistently shown that when we increase taxes, we suppress growth in our economy and discourage initiative and achievement in our people. The government ends up taking a bigger piece of a shrinking pie. This process is a death spiral – and one the U.S. is on today.

What we must do is allow U.S. businesses and individuals to generate more income by (1) reducing taxes and (2) getting a stifling, smothering, anti-business bureaucracy out of our faces, out of our offices, and out of our pocketbooks. Our economic history has consistently shown that reducing taxes creates economic growth. The result is government can take a smaller piece of a much bigger pie and still increase its income. When Americans discover that they get to keep more of the income they generate, they’ll generate a lot more income – and the pie gets even bigger! But government’s intrusion into every aspect of our economy creates huge inefficiencies as businesses and individuals must deal with the demands placed upon them.

Increasing income is only ½ of the solution. We must also decrease our outgo. How do we do that?

The cost of government has gotten too big because the size of government has gotten too big. We reduce the cost of government by reducing the size of government. Easier said than done? You bet!

So where do we start? Well, you can poke the federal government just about anywhere and hit fat, so our choices are almost endless. Let’s start with eliminating some of these bloated, competitive, and duplicative bureaucracies. (I’ve been in the food safety business for the last decade. I’ve been told that there are as many as 17 different federal agencies that regulate food safety. That over-regulation could explain why we don’t have safer food – and a budget deficit!)

We must rein in some terribly out-of-bounds if not out-of-control federal agencies such as the EPA, which has become something like a 21st century American Gestapo. It recently told Congress that it will do by regulation what Congress refuses to do by legislation. When a federal agency blackmails Congress, it is time for that bureaucracy to have its wings clipped and its chain dramatically shortened.

But more fundamentally and much more importantly, we must make a multi-generational commitment to return and reshape the federal government to the original prescription of the Constitution.

The biggest challenge to reducing the size of the federal government is the inevitable battle over what we will be cut and what will be kept. Those decisions – though painful – are not as difficult as they are made to seem. We already have an adopted blueprint for the role of the federal government. It’s called the Constitution of the United States of America. It clearly defines what the federal government is supposed to do, and perhaps more importantly, what the federal government is not supposed to do.

We are far adrift from its prescription. If we’re going to survive this seemingly insoluble situation, we must make the commitment – an indisputable, multi-generational and solemn commitment – to reshape and restore the federal government according to the Constitution’s prescription.

This is the fundamental battle we must fight and win in Congress. We start now and we must not waver nor be deterred. We must put – not just politicians – but leaders in Congress; bulldogs instead of blue dogs; warriors who understand that nothing less than liberty and freedom for our children and their children are at stake.

Thank you for standing with me in this fight for freedom!

*The Lonoke County Tea Party has not endorsed any candidate for the 2010 election cycle. This is posted by the editor for informational purposes only and should not be construed as an endorsement of any candidate.

January Quorum Court Meeting Report

The Quorum Court meeting on Thursday, 1/21/2010, proved to be quite the show. All of the contentious issues on the agenda were discussed and debated in front of a large crowd of Lonoke County voters. None of these issues--the alleged "sweetheart land deal", the missing money in the Sheriff's office, and the "double-dipping" of two county elected officials--were actually resolved, but voters were at least allowed to hear from those involved.

The most heated discussion centered around the issue of the proposed ordinance to allow Lonoke County Judge Charlie Troutman to purchase a small tract of land from District 3 Justice of the Peace Larry Odom. As previously reported, Judge Troutman and JP Odom had agreed upon a price and the judge was seeking the required permission of the Court to purchase the property for Lonoke County.

Before any motion to bring the ordinance to the floor, Judge Troutman gave an impassioned defense of his, and Odom's, actions in the matter at hand. Expressing disbelief that the issue had drawn such bad publicity, Troutman explained the land purchase was nothing more than an improvement project that would benefit citizens of the county and make the intersection of Highways 67/167 and 5 much safer. He referred to Arkansas Highway Department documents and county records of sales of similar property to refute any claims that his offer to Odom was out of line. Wrapping up his remarks on the issue, he addressed District 13 JP Mark Edwards who sent the email that drew the public's attention to the proposed deal. Troutman asked, "Where the Hell do you get the right to call me corrupt?"

Odom offered to abstain when Troutman asked for a motion to bring the ordinance to the floor. The Judge requested Odom not abstain and Edwards made the motion. It was seconded and the fireworks started again when Odom opened the debate with a long statement defending his actions in the deal.

Odom informed the Court he'd served this county for 20 years, and had never been called corrupt. He stated that he'd purchased the property involved for his stepchildren and didn't want to sell. Odom said his wife didn't want to sell the property either, but that he'd talked her into it for the good of the county. After the deal became public and the uproar ensued, he said he and his wife were angered. Stating he would no longer consider Troutman's offer of $60,000 for the property, but would take the appraised value--if it came in more or less, he would sell the land for the appraised value. Odom said he was offended because he had "tried to help, and got kicked in the damn mouth."

After Odom's address, Edwards acknowledged that something does need to be done at the intersection and that things may have been better handled had he confronted Troutman and Odom with his concerns before sending the email. Edwards then turned to a line of questioning regarding his concerns that Amendment 55, Act 742 of 1977 had not been properly followed in this instance.

In particular, section 14-14-1202 "Ethics for county government officers and employees" states:

(3) The officer or employee may not use his or her office, the influence created by his or her official position, or information gained by virtue of his or her position to advance his or her individual personal economic interest or that of an immediate member of his or her family or an associate, other than advancing strictly incidental benefits as may accrue to any of them from the enactment or administration of law affecting the public generally.

In this same section of the amendment, county officers are defined to include "all elected county and township officers." And a few paragraphs following this definition we see the following paragraph:

(c)(1) Rules of Conduct. No officer or employee of county government shall: (A)(i) Be interested, either directly or indirectly, in any contract or transaction made, authorized, or entered into on behalf of the county or an entity created by the county, or accept or receive any property, money, or other valuable thing for his or her use or benefit on account of, connected with, or growing out of any contract or transaction of a county.

Though the preceding paragraphs seem to imply such a deal as that previously reached by Troutman and Odom violate Amendment 55, an exception can be made as we see a little further into section 14-14-1202:

(2)(A)(i) If the quorum court determines that it is in the best interest of the county, the quorum court may by ordinance permit the county to purchase goods or services directly or indirectly from quorum court members, county officers, or county employees due to unusual circumstances.
(ii) The ordinance permitting the purchases must specifically define the unusual circumstances under which the purchases are allowed and the limitations of the authority.

And this appears to be where the difference of opinion originated that led to the fireworks involving this deal. This deal had been in the works for months, and Edwards believed the Quorum Court should have been made aware of it, and had the opportunity to deliberate the pros and cons long before. Troutman and Odom believed placing the ordinance on the agenda a month in advance was sufficient notice.

The second most contentious item on the agenda was the "double dipping" of two county elected officials that recently made the news. Lonoke County Treasurer Karol Depreist and Assessor Jerry Adams are now drawing their full salary along with their retirement. Though a recent Attorney General's opinion indicates the practice may violate state law, the two county officials continued to perform their duties without drawing pay for a period of 90 days.

An attorney general’s opinion on drawing retirement while in office raises the possibility of charges of abuse of office, abuse of public trust, theft of public benefits, falsifying a business record, and tampering with a public record. --Cabot Star Herald

Edwards and District 6 Justice of the Peace Alexis Malham grilled Depriest's and Adams' attorney on the matter. The attorney, Denise Hoggard, also represents other "double-dippers" across the state. Hoggard insisted the two had complied with the letter of the law. But Edwards and Malham referenced the APERS application for retirement benefits and Amendment 55 to insist vacancies had existed in the Treasurer's and Assessor's offices. If true, state law requires the Quorum Court be notified, declare a vacancy, and appoint an interim official to fill the vacancy.

Section 14-14-1308 "Vacancy in Office"

A county, county quorum court district, or township office shall be considered vacant if any one (1) of the following conditions exists:
(4) The incumbent resigns;

Though Hoggard disagreed, the APERS application and the AG opinion seem to indicate resignation is a precondition of retirement. Therefore, the Court should have been notified, a vacancy declared, and replacements appointed for the two retiring officials.

14-14-1309 "Declaration of Vacancy"

The quorum court of each county shall declare a county, county quorum court district, or township office vacant where conditions of vacancy exist as demonstrated in the following manner:
(2) Upon determination by a quorum court that a condition of vacancy exists in all other causes not governed by failure to be commissioned or finding of judicial
proceedings. Such determination by a quorum court shall be conducted through the process of resolution as prescribed by law if the resolution shall have been published prior to the meeting date in which the resolution is to be considered by the court.

14-14-1310 "Filling vacancies in elective offices"

COUNTY ELECTIVE OFFICES. Vacancies in all county elective offices shall be filled by the county quorum court through the process of resolution as prescribed by law.

Though Edwards and Malham continued to press the issue, District 7 JP Adam Sims suggested the Court await an investigation by the Legislative Audit Division to make a determination on the matter. Edwards made a motion to declare a vacancy for the Treasurer's office and Malham seconded. However, no vote was taken and the Court moved on to other business.