In Arkansas, Democrats again vote down inclusive debate bill

(excerpt from) Arkansas News
Panel again rejects bill to require inclusive debates
By John Lyon /Posted March 23, 2009

LITTLE ROCK — For the second time, the House Committee on State Agencies and Governmental Affairs voted down a bill today aimed at heightening the profile of third-party and independent political candidates.

HB 1863 by Rep. Richard Carroll of North Little Rock, the Legislature’s first Green Party member, failed in a party-line vote, with seven Republican committee members voting for the bill and five Democratic members voting against it. The measure needed 11 votes for the 20-member panel’s endorsement.

Under the bill, no candidate who has been certified for the ballot could be excluded from a publicly funded debate or a debate held at a publicly funded facility such as a university…

Rod Bryan, who ran as an independent candidate for governor in 2006, testified for the bill. Bryan said he was excluded from debates at Arkansas State University, the University of Arkansas and the Clinton School of Public Service…

No one spoke against the bill.

A story about the last time this bill was voted down is: here.

8 thoughts on “In Arkansas, Democrats again vote down inclusive debate bill

  1. Nate

    “with seven Republican committee members voting for the bill and five Democratic members voting against it. The measure needed 11 votes for the 20-member panel’s endorsement.”

    From my quick count on the website this seems to mean that 6 Ds and 2 Rs didn’t vote. The hell is wrong with them? It’s your friggin’ job, read the bill, it isn’t that long, consider it and decide. I think that annoys me the most.

    And hats off to the Republicans on this issue: 7 of 9, it’s not just for borgs anymore.

  2. paulie

    Democrats Against Democracy strike again!

    Ah yes. I still want to infiltrate the Democrats and start that up as a “real” group. Anyone up for it?

  3. Nate

    Yes, that could certainly be the case. On the other hand, if we complain that those who vote for it are against democracy, those who vote against it are corrupt and playing politics, and those who don’t vote at all are lazy and not doing their job… well then, what the hell do we want them to do??

  4. Nate

    It’s more likely anyway, that the Rs think this will mainly mean more Greens running and debating, which will give them a better chance at winning, while the Ds think this will mainly mean more Greens running and debating, which will give them a harder time.

    In fact this will actually mean more Greens running and debating, which will give the Greens a better chance at winning. Funny how three sides can see things so differently and yet so much the same.

  5. Green Ferret

    Democrats Against Democracy strike again!

    “Ah yes. I still want to infiltrate the Democrats and start that up as a “real” group. Anyone up for it?”

    Paulie – it’s still sort of a dream of mine, too… if only I were more of a street-theater activist.
    I’d suggest contacting the folks behind Billionaires for Bush to see if any of them would be interested in starting DAD, or at least offering some friendly advice. Could be a good way to educate people about the two-party scam.

  6. Nate

    Democrats also killed the other bill, which would have changed the minimum 3% vote from governor’s race to any state wide race. This would allow the Green Party to remain on the ballot, thanks to their 20% of the vote for US Senate. More here:

    http://politicsinarkansas.com/2009/03/third-party-bill-fails-again/

    I especially like Dan Greenberg’s response to the strange reasoning of the Democrats:

    Mariah Hatta, executive director of the Democratic Party of Arkansas, testified against the bill.

    “Changing the rules in the middle of the game is unfair,” she said.

    Rep. Dan Greenberg, R-Little Rock, said he wondered “when the game ends, so at that point we’ll be allowed to look at our election laws.”

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