Mark Moore, over at the Arkansas Watch blog, is pretty conservative, to put it mildly. So I was interested to read his take on Gov. Mike Beebe. Saying he had expected to be opening fire on Beebe shortly with both barrels, Moore continued with an interesting analysis:
But a funny thing happened on the first day of hostilities. I find myself relieved at the way Beebe handles himself after a decade of Mike Huckabee. Remember when I said that the Speaker of the House was stirring up opposition to some of Beebe's ideas? Notice how our new Governor handles those issues in this Warwick Sabin video from YouTube.
Beebe focused on what they agreed on, made a logical defense for his positions, respected Petrus's right to his own view, and stressed that they could work it out because of a virtue his opponent possessed. Can anyone remember, or even imagine, Mike Huckabee handling a similar situation with such maturity and grace? Whenever a conservative Republican legislator expressed oppositon to any of Huckabee's ideas, the thin-skinned one sprouted more bristles than a bag of porcupines and made quotes like "he doesn't drink the same kind of Jesus-juice that I drink". Huckabee tended to make disagreement with him personal. Beebe brings in a very different style.
I still may agree more with Petrus than Beebe on the specifics of the issues. I am still sorting through the substance. Nevertheless, Beebe seems to understand how to comport himself with style in the office.
Meanwhile, John Brummett, on his blog, marvels, too, at how Warwick's video yesterday captured this essence of Beebe for some readers in a way that words apparently never have.