One of those days. Gerard and I both have independent projects this morning that interfere with Capitol coverage. But I'll be checking in on, among others:
* Progress of legislation to have Arkansas join other gas-producing states with common-sense regulation to protect air, water and adjacent landowners. It's not an industry killer, though the gas company employees who've turned out in droves to oppose the legislation would have you think so.
UPDATE: All the good government bills were killed by shipment to interim committee. Poison now, pay later. It's interesting that the Republican Party has adopted the cry that clean air and water and best practices translate to industry killers. Do they only represent corporate interests? Do they represent anyone who lives next to a leaking waste pound or a noisy rig or a pot-holed county road? Are they so tunnel blind that they think all of Arkansas thinks outsiders should be able to plunder our resources without regard to consequences?
* Gov. Mike Beebe will try for committee approval of the necessary legislation to set up state insurance exchanges under federal health care law. Republican governors all over America have said this is the only smart option — against federal regulation and higher costs — as long as the federal law is the law of the land. Tea Party Republicans in Arkansas are hoping to grab some glory by blocking the legislation here, no matter the cost.