by Max Brantley
In case you'd missed the strong influence of Faulkner Countians in Arkansas Republican politics, starting with Chairman Gil Baker, consider this:
The Coalition for Arkansas' Future, a 527 front group funded almost exclusively by the state Republican Party and the Republican Governors Association, has been pumping money mostly into the governor's race and some selected legislative races. But that's not all.
Wonder how Jim Holt-Jim Lagrone-Chris Morris-etc. would feel about learning that party money is going out to support -- not them -- but a candidate for Faulkner County judge?
The Coalition sent out a mailing in behalf of Catherin Blankenship, who, thanks to national Republicans' money, thousands have been told "is prepared to lead Faulkner County." Don't mess with her. As the mailing notes, she has a fourth-degree black belt in taekwondo. Hai karate!
Noted: This sounds an awful lot like an endorsement, which 527s are prohibited from issuing. But the law is well established. As long as 527s don't expressly advocate votes for or against a candidate, anything short of that is legal.
UPDATE: Sam Faubus, over at Greasy Creek, notes the similarity between Blankenship's materials and the supposedly "independent" 527's language. Coordinated? You decide.