Good morning. It’s earlier where I am, so sorry for the delayed start.
* GOOD NEWS FROM THE UA: I’m sure it’s only coincident, with the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees convening about now, perhaps to make a pronouncement of some sort on campus leader Chancellor David Gearhart, that I get a news release touting the campus’ mid-year fund-raising results. It reports $62 million raised toward a $108 million goal halfway through the year. Chris “Brother Honky” Wyrick, head of the Advancement Division, said it was simply a matter of cross-campus teamwork.
* THE STATES OF THE UNION — ARKANSAS IS 49: Politico has rounded up a gang of indicators — wealth, health, education, crime — and ranked the states. Thank God for Mississippi and Louisiana.
* WHAT? NO CONFIDENCE IN BRYANT MAYOR REPUBLICAN DABBS?: I gather the Bryant City Council has mustered a no-confidence vote in Mayor Jill “Republican” Dabbs. No wonder. A big CD was cashed to cover money being spent from a wrong account. Nearly a month into the year Bryant has been unable to close its books on 2013. Etc. Writes the mayor in a letter distributed publicly:
With a vote of no confidence certain members of council only made public tonight what the citizens of Bryant have known to be true since I took office and that is they do not support me. Despite that well known fact I will continue to lead to the best of my ability, putting the citizens first and working every day to deserve the confidence they placed in me when they elected me Mayor.
I am proud of all we have accomplished in the past three years. The temporary challenges we are faced with in the finance department as a result of a software platform change do not diminish all of the good things going on to benefit the citizens of Bryant. They simply give politically opportunistic council members a chance to sling a little mud.
The financial department has made good progress this week towards finalizing the 2013 financials. This has been a challenge following a software platform change during 2013 and in addition our previous finance director resigning abruptly.
And so on. In short: “Not MY fault.”
* REPUBLICAN WAR ON WOMEN LOSES ROUND IN OKLAHOMA: A judge in Oklahoma has invalidated a law passed by the Republican-controlled Oklahoma legislature to make it harder for women to obtain a morning-after pill to prevent pregnancy after unprotected (sometimes forced) sex. Yes, Oklahoma Republicans demanded an ID of grown women and a prescription for younger women. A little personal humiliation of women is fine in the name of forcing women who have sex — even unwillingly — to live with the consequences. And it’s Democrats, Mike Huckabee says, who demean women? And did he really invoke the Holocaust yesterday in defending himself from internal party criticism? I’m afraid he did. First the Club for Growth calls Mike Huckabee a RINO and the next thing you know, we’ll have genocide in America. Somebody needs to put Mike Huckabee in the time-out corner for a day or so.
* ‘OUT’ AND IMPORTANT: Arkansas native Chad Griffin has made a list compiled by National Journal of the 30 most influential “out” people in Washington. Griffin heads the Human Rights Campaign, probably the most important advocacy group for gay rights.