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Arkansas Week June 20, 2014

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(A fix?) The cost of health insurance, teachers and administrators getting antsy. (P.O.) The Arkansas adaptation, should the enrolled get ready to pay? (HRC) Twice a former first lady, thrice an author, does the latest book mean twice the candidate? (John Miller) And an appreciation of a legendary Arkansas Legislator.

TRANSCRIPT

HELLO AGAIN EVERYONE. THANKS FOR JOINING US FOR "ARKANSAS WEEK". A FULL AGENDA AND WE BEGIN WITH THE COST OF HEALTH CARE COVERAGE TO A WIDE RANGE OF PUBLIC EMPLOYEES. HAL HAL JOINS US FROM THE POLITICAL SCIENCE DEPARTMENT AT OUACHITA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY. RICK FAHR AN INDEPENDENT JOURNALIST AND ERNIE DUMAS AN INDEPENDENT JOURNALIST FROM THE ARKANSAS TIMES. ERNIE WE HEAR SPECIAL SESSION TALK ABOUT A FIX ON TEACHER INSURANCE BUT ALL OF A SUDDEN THE WHOLE PUBLIC SECTOR INSURANCE SIDE OF IT IS BEING CALLED -- PUBLIC EMPLOYEES TOO ARE LOOKING AT IT.

RIGHT. THE GOVERNOR SAYS -- EXCUSE ME HE WANTS TO CALL A SPECIAL SESSION BUT IF HE CALLS ONE IT'S LIMITED TO THREE DAYS WHICH MEANS ALL LEGISLATORS MUST HAVE ALL OF THE ISSUES SETTLED IN ADVANCE. THEY COUNT THE VOTES AND HAVE A MAJORITY OF BOTH HOUSES IN AGREEMENT TO PASS THE BILLS OR HE'S NOT GOING TO CALL IT. THE SCHOOL HEALTH INSURANCE IS I GUESS THE MOST IMPORTANT ONE, THE MOST URGENT. IT HAS TO BE ADDRESSED BEFORE THE SCHOOL YEAR STARTS AND THE SHORT FALL AND HE -- HEALTH INSURANCE FOR EMPLOYEES AND THEY HAVE WHAT THEY CALL A FIX BUT IT'S A BANDAIDE AND PERHAPS WANT AN EFFECTIVE BANDAIDE AND COVER THE SHORT FALL BY ABSORBING SOME OF THE MONIES, SAVINGS, THAT SCHOOL DISTRICTS REALIZED FROM FEDERALLY PAYROLL SAVINGS WHEN PEOPLE CANCEL THEIR HEALTH INSURANCE. THEY WILL RECOUP THAT FROM THE SCHOOL DISTRICT, BRING IT TO THE STATE. THEY WOULD ALSO THROW OFF PART TIME EMPLOYEES OFF SCHOOL HEALTH INSURANCE, AND ALSO REQUIRE SPOUSES OF SCHOOL EMPLOYEES TO TRY TO GET COVERAGE UNDER THEIR SPOUSE'S EMPLOYER IF THEY CAN. I DON'T KNOW HOW YOU ENFORCE THAT. ANYWAY SO THEY HAVE ENOUGH VOTES APPARENTLY IN THE SENATE, BUT NOT ENOUGH YET IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES WHERE THERE ARE MORE DEMOCRATS AND THE REPUBLICANS ARE NOT IN THE MAJORITY LIKE THE SENATOR SO IT REMAINS TO BE SEEN IF THEY SETTLE THAT ISSUE.

TWO YEAR TERMS IN THE HOUSE.

TWO YEARS IN THE HOUSE, NOT FOUR YEARS SO THAT REMAINS IN SOME DOUBT. THE GOVERNOR SAYS HE WILL GO ALONG WITH IT. NOT THAT IT'S A PERMANENT SOLUTION BUT HE WILL CALL THE SESSION IF THEY CAN ARRIVE AT CONSENSUS ABOUT THESE OR SOME OTHER PROPOSALS. I THINK EVENTUALLY THEY HAVE TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF EQUALIZING THE SCHOOL EMPLOYERS -- EMPLOYEES AND STATE EMPLOYEES INCLUDING THE LEGISLATORS THEMSELVES ARE ON A RETIREMENT SYSTEM MORE FUNDED BY THE STATE RATHER THAN THE SCHOOLS AND THE EMPLOYEES SO THAT REMAINS TO BE SEEN. THERE'S -- I WILL COME BACK TO I GUESS I THE OTHER HEALTH INSURANCE ISSUE, BUT THERE IS ALSO THE ISSUE OF PRISONS. THE SHERIFFS IN PARTICULARLY WOULD LIKE THE LEGISLATURE TO ADDRESS THE JAIL OVER CROWDING PROBLEM AND THE GOVERNOR SAYS HE'S FOUND THE MONEY IN THE GENERAL SERVICES FUND, THREE AND A HALF MILLION DOLLARS THEY CAN TRANSFER TO THE PRISONS SO THEY CAN OPEN UP 300 BEDS AVAILABLE BUT THEY DON'T HAVE THE STAFFING TO OPEN THEM AND ALSO TO PROVIDE SOME MONEY TO THE COUNTIES TO COVER -- COMPENSATE THEM FOR HOUSING STATE INMATES SO THAT MAY GET ADDRESSED AS WELL IN THE SESSION AND I THINK THE LOTTERY -- A LOT OF LEGISLATORS UPON THE LEGISLATURE TO PROHIBIT THE LOTTERY COMMISSION FROM EXPANDING THE LOTTERY TO VIDEO GAMES AND THAT COULD BE ANOTHER ITEM IN THE SPECIAL SESSION SO IF YOU CALL A SPECIAL SESSION FOR ALL OF THOSE THINGS IT'S DOUBTFUL THAT YOU CAN GET IT DOWN IN THREE DAYS AND THE MINIMUM REQUIRED TO PASS ANY LAW AND YOU MENTIONED THE OTHER THING TO BRING UP AT THE TIME IS THE ISSUE OF REQUIRING PEOPLE WHO ARE ENROLLED IN MEDICAID UNDER THE SO-CALLED PRIVATE OPTION IN ARKANSAS TO REQUIRE THEM TO PICK UP A SOMEWHAT LARGER SHARE OF THEIR MEDICAL COVERAGE. PERHAPS THROUGH HIGHER DEDUCTIBLES OR --

COPAYS.

CO-PAYS OR SOMETHING SO THAT IS ANOTHER ISSUE. THAT'S BEEN SORT OF AGREED ON IN THE PAST AND I DON'T KNOW IF THAT REQUIRES LEGISLATION BUT NEVERTHELESS IT'S A REVAMPING OF THE SO-CALLED PRIVATE OPTION, AND TWO, MIGHT BRING ANOTHER REPUBLICAN VOTERS TO BEAR A LARGER SHARE --

AS I RECALL IT GOT A COUPLE OF VOTES THE LAST TIME.

IT DID. IT PERHAPS PUT IT OVER LAST TIME.

RICK ON TO THE SCHOOL DEAL. THERE MAYBE 75 SHERIFFS AND 300 SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENTS AND MORE AND WHENEVER YOU MESS WITH SCHOOLS AND THE HAIR ON THE BACK OF THE NECKS STAND UP.

THERE ARE 47,000 TEACHERS OUT THERE.

YEAH.

THAT ARE CONSTITUENTS OF EVERY LEGISLATOR IN THE LEGISLATURE HERE. CRITICS ARE OF THE PROPOSAL BEING ADVANCED ARE CLAIMING -- I THINK JUSTIFIABLY THAT THESE SAVINGS FROM THE PAYROLL TAXES ARE ALREADY BEING ALLOCATED FOR SCHOOL DISTRICT PURPOSES, AND TO PUSH THEM INTO THIS PARTICULAR BUCKET IS GOING TO LEAVE THE OTHER PROGRAMS UNFUNDED VERY LATE IN THE GAME AS THE SCHOOL YEAR APPROACHES.

A PETER PAUL.

EXACTLY. AND THERE IS THE IRONY WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WITH THE PEOPLE YOU'RE THROWING OFF THE HEALTH INSURANCE ROLLS AND THE OBVIOUS OPTION IS THE PRIVATE OPTION BUT THAT SEEMS TO BE IN PERIL AND THAT RAISES QUESTIONS GOING FORWARD WHETHER CAMPAIGN RHETORIC OR POLICY CONCERNS ARE GOING TO PREVAIL IN THE NEXT REGULAR SESSION.

RICK.

OVER THE LAST YEARS THE STATE HAS PUMPED A LOT MORE MONEY INTO THE SCHOOLS ACROSS THE STATE, BUT IT SEEMS LIKE IT'S NEVER ENOUGH, AND WE'RE ALWAYS JUST AS YOU SAID TAKING MONEY OUT OF ONE POCKET TO PUT INTO ANOTHER AND DOESN'T SEEM LIKE THE PROPOSALS THAT WE HEARD OF NOW FOR THIS ISSUE REALLY ADDRESS ANY NEW MONEY. IT JUST SEEMS YOU'RE AGAIN TAKING OUT OF ONE POCKET TO PUT IN ANOTHER AND I DON'T KNOW --

AND REMOVING MORE PEOPLE FROM THE SCHOOL HEALTH INSURANCE ROLLS AND THAT IS ONE OF THE PROBLEMS IS THE SHRINKING ENROLLMENT IN THE SCHOOL HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM.

AND LIKE THIS WITH THE PRISONS AND WE MORE IN PRISONS AND HOUSING AND COUNTY JAILS AND WE HAVEN'T FIXED THAT EITHER REALLY.

YEAH, AND A REAL FIX WILL BE EXPENSIVE EVEN AS -- WE'RE GETTING TOUGH ON CRIME AGAIN, AND NOT TO SAY -- NOT UNJUSTIFIABLY SO AND IN THE SENSE OF VIOLENT OFFENDERS BUT IT'S VERY EXPENSIVE.

VERY EXPENSIVE AND I BELIEVE WE'RE GOING TO COME TO A POINT AT SOME POINT, A TIPPING POINT, WHERE WE REALLY DO IDENTIFY VIOLENT AND NON VIOLENT OFFENDERS IN TERMS OF SENTENCING IN DIFFERENT WAYS THAT WE DO NOW. MANY FOLKS IN PRISON ARE THERE BECAUSE OF DRUG CRIMES AND THERE WASN'T A VIOLENT NATURE THERE BUT IT COSTS THE SAME AS SOMEONE WHO IS A THREAT AND DANGER --

YEAH, THE OTHER POINT TO BOTH OF THESE WE HAVE MADE TAXES A DIRTY WORD IN THE ARKANSAS POLITICAL CULTURE. WE HAVE TO GET BEYOND THAT BECAUSE WE HAVE TO RAISE THE REVENUE.

THAT'S THE BIG ISSUE IN ALL OF THESE THINGS BECAUSE THE LEGISLATURE AT THE LAST SESSION OR TWO HAS CUT TAXES BECAUSE THE OBAMACARE WAS COMING ALONG AND IT WAS GOING TO SAVE ARKANSAS A LOT OF MONEY AND AS A RESULT OF THAT WE'RE FREE TO CUT PEOPLES' TAXES AND YOU DID THAT. A LOT OF THAT IS KICKING IN WITHIN THE NEXT FISCAL YEAR AND THERE IS NO -- AND SALES TAXES HAVE BEEN SHRINKING AS WELL BECAUSE OF THE ONLINE PURCHASES AND SO FORTH SO YOU WILL HAVE A DIFFICULT TIME IN JANUARY, AND I GUESS THE GOVERNOR IS GOING TO LEAVE IT TO HIS SUCCESSOR MIKE ROSS OR ASA HUTCHINSON TO DEAL WITH BUT YOU WILL NOT HAVE THE APPROPRIATION, FLEXIBILITY, THAT YOU HAD IN THE PAST BECAUSE OF THE SHRINKING -- NOT THE SHRINKING NECESSARILY BUT THE RETARDED GROWTH OF REVENUES CUTTING INTO THE TAXES IN THE LAST YEAR OR TO.

ONTO ANOTHER AREA OF POLITICS AND WE HAVE MR. PRYOR AND MR. COTTON AT A WAR OF WORDS BUT WHAT LEAKED LAST WEEK WAS SOMETHING -- WELL, IT MIGHT BE THE BASIS FOR A TELEVISION COMMERCIAL. THERE WAS THE ANNUAL -- BRADLEY COUNTY -- [INAUDIBLE] DOWN AT WARREN, TOMATO JUICE AND EVERYTHING FOR DECADES AND ABSOLUTE CAN'T MISS AND ANYBODY RUNNING FOR ANYTHING -- ESPECIALLY ON THE STATE WIDE BASIS.

IT'S THE OPENING OF THE POLITICAL SEASON.

YEAH, HAD TO GO MUNCH AND IT WAS GOOD. MR. COTTON WAS ELSEWHERE AND APPARENTLY PHOTOGRAPHS OF A FUNDRAISER.

YES, HE WAS LOCATED OUT IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, AND THE NATION MAGAZINE HAD A STORY ABOUT THIS, ABOUT HIS MEETING AND AGREEING WITH THE FOLKS IN -- WHAT I CALL CONSERVATIVE IDEOLOGICAL NETWORK FROM THIS AND IT REMINDS ME OF THE OLD [INAUDIBLE] "YOU DANCE WITH THE ONES BRILLIANT HERE." THESE ARE COTTON SUPPORTERS AND PUT HIM FORWARD AND HE'S SHOWING HIS IEPTD AND LOYALTY TO THEM AND THE QUESTION IS HOW DOES IT MESH WITH THE ARKANSAS POLITICAL CULTURE THAT IS AT LEAST TRADITIONALLY MORE FOCUSED ON EVENTS LIKE THE PINK TOMATO FESTIVAL THAN A POLICY BRIEFING SESSION OUT IN CALIFORNIA, AND IT MAY WELL BE THAT WE'RE IN A NEW AGE WHERE NATIONAL CONCERNS AND IDEOLOGICAL RIGOR IS WHAT DRIVES VOTERS AND IT MAY BE THAT WE REMIND MORE PERSONNELLISTIC, PRESS THE FLESH, MEET AND GREET AND WE HAVE A TEST CASE IN THE ELECTION.

YEAH AND RATHER THAN HAMMER ING HIM AND MAYBE HE DID THE SMART THING.

HE COULD HAVE.

AND RETAIL FOR THE DAY.

SET THE SCENE HERE. HE DIDN'T ANNOUNCE WHERE HE WAS. HE DIDN'T APPEAR AT THE PINK TOMATO FESTIVAL AND THE NATION HAD A SPREAD ON IT AND THE PICTURE OF THE PALABORRIAL RESORT AND THE KOCH BROTHERS ARRANGED IT. THEY'RE THE LIBERTARIAN BILLIONAIRES AND HAVE $80 BILLION. THEY HAVE PUMPED A LOT OF MONEY INTO THE COTTON CAMPAIGN OR ELSE THE ANTI-PRYOR CAMPAIGN AND INVITED 300 OF THE NATION'S RICHEST MEN, MANY BILLIONAIRES, TO THE RESORT TO TALK ABOUT THE COMING ELECTION AND THE NECESSITY OF NOMINATING REPUBLICANS TO THE REPUBLICAN SENATE AND TOM COTTON WAS INVITED AND A A SPECIAL GUEST AND THE AFTERNOON -- WHEN MARK PRYOR WAS AT THE FESTIVAL WITH TOMATO JUICE RUNNING DOWN THE SHIRT HE WAS PLAYING GOLF WITH SOME OF THE RICHEST MEN IN THE WORLD AND THE QUESTION IS WOULD HE HAVE GOTTEN THAT MONEY ANYWAY? IT'S CLEAR HE WILL BENEFIT FROM MILLIONS OF DOLLARS AND LIKE HAL SAID IT MIGHT BE MORE THAN PRESSING THE FLESH AND MEETING THE PEOPLE IN BRADLEY COUNTY AND SURROUNDING AREAS. WE WILL SEE. IT'S AN INTERESTING CHANGE FROM THE PAST .

RICK FAHR HOW MUCH IS RETAIL WORTH?

IT'S THE WAY ARKANSAS POLITICIAN VS GONE ABOUT THEIR BUSINESS FOR HOWEVER MANY EONS.

THIS ISN'T THE FIRST TIME THAT REPRESENTATIVE COTTON DIDN'T SHOW UP AT AN EVENT -- (LOW AUDIO) AND AT THE PRESIDENTIAL CENTER? LITTLE ROCK. YOU -- [INAUDIBLE] POLITICIAN OR THREE THERE. SENATOR PRYOR, THE GOVERNOR, CRAWFORD -- REPRESENTATIVE COTTON WASN'T. GRANTED IT MIGHT NOT BE HIS GROUP OF FOLKS BUT IT'S HARD TO RUN A RACE TO REPRESENT ARKANSANS IF YOU DON'T EVER COME AROUND ARKANSANS BUT IT SEEMS LIKE IT SHOULD BE. IT HAS IN THE PAST AND MAYBE THIS WILL BE THE CASE WHERE WE LEARN IF THAT INVESTMENT INTO THE RETAIL POLITICS IS WORKING ANYMORE.

SPEAKING OF RETAIL NOW ON SALE FOR -- I CAN'T REMEMBER -- THE THIRD BOOK OF OUR FORMER FIRST LADY, FORMER SENATOR FROM NEW YORK, AND FORMER SECRETARY OF STATEMENT HAL, YOU KEEP A CLOSE EYE ON PRESIDENTIAL NEWS. SHE'S RUNNING BECAUSE SHE HASN'T SAID SHE'S NOT.

IT IS SOMETHING THAT SHE IS RUNNING. SHE PUBLISHED A MEMOIR AND IT LOOKS BACK. IT'S DESIGNED TO ESSENTIALLY SHAPE HISTORICAL UNDERSTANDINGS. WHEN A MEMOIR IS PUBLISHED BY SOMEONE WHO ANTICIPATES ELECTORAL FUTURE YEAR THEN THE MEMOIR TAKES ON A FORWARD LOOKING CHARACTER AS WELL AND CLEARLY SHE IS PRESENTING HERSELF IN A FASHION THAT WILL ASSIST AND ADVANCE A CAMPAIGN SHOULD IT BE FORTHCOMING.

ALL I HAVE READ IS THE REVIEWS AND NOT THE BOOK AND THE APPARENTLY THE LAST LINE OF THE BOOK LEAVES OPEN THAT DOOR.

NOW EVERY PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE NOW WRITES A BOOK FIRST, EVEN LOW LEVEL CANDIDATES AND IF YOU'RE MIKE HUCKABEE AND WRITE ABOUT THE WEIGHT LOSS AND SHE GETS COVERAGE ABOUT IT AND DOMINATES FOR A WEEK OR TWO AND I DON'T THINK THERE IS A QUESTION SHE IS RUNNING UNLESS SOMETHING CHANGES HER MIND.

SHE HAS DONE A SERIES OF INTERVIEWS AND THE BIGGEST BLOW BACK IS WHEN SHE POOR MOUTHED THE FINANCES AND THEY WERE UNDER WATER IN JANUARY 2001. THEY SURFACED RATHER QUICKLY THOUGH.

AND THEY HAD MANY OPPORTUNITIES TO SURFACE.

PRESIDENTS DON'T DO BAD --

NO. IT WAS SAID THEY WERE $12 MILLION IN DEBT TO LEGAL FEES. THAT'S NOT DIFFICULT TO BELIEVE IN ANY SHAPE, FORM, OR FASHION BUT THERE SEEMS TO BE CONFLATING DID THEY SHE SAY THEY WERE BROKE THEN OR NOW AND OBVIOUSLY SHE WAS TALKING ABOUT THE DAY THEY WALKED OUT OF THE WHITE HOUSE AS WITH ANYTHING WITH THE CLINTONS THERE IS ALWAYS SOME "WHAT IS THE MEANING OF THIS?"

WELL, WE DON'T HAVE TO GO VERY FAR WONDERING ABOUT THE MEANING IN FOREIGN POLICY IN AMERICAN AFFAIRS IN YOU BOUGHT GAS LATELY. LET'S GO TO AGTOPICS. WE HAD A LOT OF RAIN RICK.

YES, BUT THERE WAS A WINDOW WHEN FARMERS GOT OUT AND GOT THE CROP IN. THE RICE CROP IS IN. IT LOOKS GOOD FROM WHAT I HAVE SEEN. BEANS ARE A LITTLE BIT BEHIND. THE RECENT RAINS HAVE STALLED THE WHEEL HARVEST BUT THEY WILL GET INTO THAT HOT AND HEAVY. CORN LOOKS GOOD TOO.

PRICES?

PRICES ARE A LITTLE DOWN FROM PAST YEARS BUT THEY'RE RIGHT IN THE BALLPARK OF WHERE THEY HAVE BEEN WHICH IS GOOD WITH THE EXCEPTION OF COTTON. COTTON IS ABOUT 75 CENTS A POUND AND HISTORICALLY DOWN FROM PAST YEARS. THE REASON FOR THAT IS CHINA HAS KIND OF PUTTING A LOT OF ITS HOARED OUT COTTON ON THE MARKET AND KEEPINGURE PRICES DOWN.

AND THE SCARY PART, THE MIDDLE EAST.

ANYTIME YOU USE UNREST WITH THE MIDDLE EAST GAS AND OIL PRICES GO UP IMMEDIATELY AND IN CONWAY 20 CENTS, 25 CENTS THIS WEEK. OIL FUTURE IT'S THE OIL MARKET -- THAT COST HAS GONE UP ONLY 5% SO THERE IS A LAG BETWEEN GAS AND OIL PRICES ARE DOING RIGHT NOW BUT OIL COSTS $107 A BARREL YESTERDAY. THE EXPECTATION IT COULD GO TO 120 FAIRLY QUICKLY.

ALL RIGHT. ITS IMPACT ON THE FARM, THE AG ECONOMY AND DIESEL PRICES AND HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF GALLONS.

YEAH, ONE WAY THEY ARE COMBATING THE INCREASING DIESEL PRICE AS IT'S BEEN GOING UP IN THE LAST YEARS IS CONVERTING SOME OF THEIR WELLS FROM DIESEL POWER TO ELECTRICITY. ENERGY ESPECIALLY HAS PROGRAMS OUT THERE, SOME INCENTIVES FOR FARMERS TO DO THAT, AND SO THEY'RE TAKING A LOT OF THE DIESEL USE TO GET THE WATER OUT OF THE GROUND AND KEEPING THE PRICE DOWN.

AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO MONITOR THAT. WE COULDN'T LEAVE THE PROGRAM WITHOUT TIPPING THE HAT, I GUESS YOU SAY, ERNIE TO A LEGENDARY ARKANSAS LEGISLATOR THAT LEFT US THIS WEEK AND TERMED OUT AND 40 YEARS REPRESENTATIVE JOHN MILLER OF MEL BURN.

YES. SERVED IN THE LEGISLATURE FOR 40 YEARS AND FROM MELBURN AND REPRESENTED A COUPLE OF SURROUNDING COMMUNITIES.

IZARD.

AND PART OF INDEPENDENCE AND ONE OF THE BEST LIKED LEGISLATORS WHO EVER SERVED. EVERYBODY IN BOTH HOUSES LOVED HIM. HE WAS PATIENT WITH EVERYBODY, A KIND OF A FATHER TO ALL OF THE YOUNG LEGISLATORS BUT THE MAIN THING ABOUT JOHN MILLER IS THAT NO ONE OF WORKED HARDER AT BEING A LEGISLATOR THAN JOHN MILLER. HE MASTERED EVERYTHING. HE KNEW EVERY STATE AGENCY, THE IN'S AND THE OUT'S OF EVERY STATE AGENCY, OF BUDGETS AND TAXES. HE WAS SHARE OF THAT COMMITTEE SO NO BILL WENT THROUGH WITHOUT JOHN MILLER'S CLOSE ATTENTION TO THE DETAILS OF IT. HE WAS SHARE OF THE JOINT BUDGET COMMITTEE AND HANDLED HUNDREDS OF BILLS EVERY SESSION. ZEROED E -- HE WAS ABLE TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS AND A MASTER ABOUT THE PROCESS AND I GUESS AND HE'S FROM THE OLD SYSTEM AND ELECT AN LEGISLATOR AS LONG AS YOU WANT AND NO ONE WILL HAVE THAT MASTERY AGAIN BECAUSE YOU'RE LIMITED. Q. GOVERNOR BEEBE WILL BE THE LAST OF THAT TRADITION.

MR. MILLER MADE NO BONES ABOUT IT. HE CHOSE TO BE A FULL TIME LEGISLATOR AND IN LITTLE ROCK MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY AND EVEN WHEN NOT IN SESSION AND HIS OFFICE -- HE'S ALWAYS IN THERE. IT WAS ALWAYS SMOOTHERRED WITH DOCUMENTS.

HE NEVER PARTIED. WHEN THE LEGISLATURE IS IN SESSION YOU HAVE ALL THESE PARTIES AND HE WAS LEGITIMATELY AND WHAT WE SAID ABOUT [INAUDIBLE] AND STUDYING THE TAX CODE AND IN JOHN MILLER'S CASE THAT PROBABLY WAS TRUE AND STUDYING THE BUDGET AND THE STATE AGENCIES.

HIS LONG TENURE AT THE CAPITOL -- WELL, WHEN FIRST FIRST CAME HE WAS A FRESHMAN AND LEFT AS AN ELDER STATESMAN.

OBVIOUSLY THERE IS A VACUUM THAT EXISTS IN THE CONTEMPORARY LEGISLATURE BECAUSE OF TERM LIMITS BECAUSE NO ONE HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO DEVELOP THE EXPERTISE AND AUTHORITY LIKE A GENTLEMAN LIKE REPRESENTATIVE MILLER COULD DEVELOP OVER THE FOUR DECADES.

THEY WILL ALSO NEITHER IN THE NEW SYSTEM THEY WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO ABUSE THE SYSTEM WHICH IS THE COUNTER ARGUMENT. I CAN'T RECALL -- MR. MILLER KNEW WHO HE WAS FROM. HE TOOK CARE OF IZARD COUNTY, TOOK CARE OF HIS DISTRICT AND ANY PRUDENT LEGISLATOR WOULD DO THIS AND HE TOOK THE LAW INTO ACCOUNT ON THINGS.

YES AND HE WAS THAT TYPE OF INDIVIDUAL AND HE WON'T OVER THE BUDGET WITH A FINE TOOTH COMB AND IF THERE WAS ONE POSITION THAT COULD BE ELIMINATED -- YOU DON'T NEED THIS AND WE WILL ELIMINATE IT AND HE WAS CONSERVATIVE BUT HE REALIZED WHEN IT COMES TO TAXES YOU NEED TO FUND THINGS THAT NEED TO BE FUNDED AND HE WOULD VOTE FOR TAXES WITH OTHER GOVERNORS AND RAISED TAXES. JOHN MILLER WAS ALWAYS THERE. HE INSISTED -- 1 PENNY, TWO PENNIES ON THE SALES TAX AND NOT GO BEYOND THAT. WE'RE NOT GOING TO PROVIDE THESE EXEMPTIONS SO HE HAD AM IMMENSE EFFECT ON POLICY.

AND WE HAVE TO NOTE ANOTHER PASSING, RON BREEDY, AND FORMER NEWS DIRECTOR AT KUAR RADIO AND A MEMBER OF THIS PANEL AND OCCASIONAL MODERATOR IN THIS PANEL AND WE LOST RON AND WE GRIEVE WITH HIM AND HIS FAMILY. GEPTS THANKS FOR COMING IN. THANKS TO YOU ALWAYS FOR WATCHING AND WE WILL SEE YOU NEXT WEEK.

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