by Max Brantley
The line is now open. All is not entirely quiet:
* HOWLING IN NORTH LITTLE ROCK: Multiple notes have come in today about some unhappiness about North Little Rock School District plans to acquire some residential property for the major school rebuilding plan financed by the recent tax millage. Some potential property acquisitions in Amboy have stirred up this Facebooker. School districts do have the ability to take property for the public use of a school district, but that doesn't mean the affected property owners will like it.
* THE EXPANDING DRIVE FOR ETHICAL GOVERNMENT: Former Congressman Vic Snyder will host a fund-raiser at his home Tuesday for the Better Ethics Now Committee, which is raising money to power the petition campaign for Regnat Populus 2012's ethics law initiative. Guests include former Sen. Dale Bumpers, former Rep. John Paul Hammerschmidt and former Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders. I note a new Republican name on the committee's list, former Supreme Court Justice Betty Dickey. Yet another campaign — on top of the Koch/Crossland funded election of Bart Hester to a Senate seat — illustrates the need for a limit on corporate contributions to state political campaigns. Though the contribution limits are nominally $2,000, big developer Jim Lindsey gave $20,000 to the Republican Senate campaign of Mike Akin in the last reporting period using various corporate identities to get the loot to Akin.
* WHY NOT HUCKABEE?: The Fix, the Washington Post political blog, is positively unglued because Mike Huckabee isn't the favorite to be Mitt Romney's running mate. A former Huckster aide is talking him up, but the thinking is that Romney is now OK with the evangelical red hots and may not need shoring up from the former preacher. Hatred of the Kenyan Muslim has done that trick.
“Conservatives will not abandon or run from Romney,” said one GOP strategist who is skeptical that Huckabee is in the VP mix. “Why? They view him less of a threat than Obama. Evangelicals won’t repeat the mistake they made in 2008.”
In the end, Huckabee’s appeal may not be what it once was and he may not be the kind of complement that Romney needs these days.
But dark horses have found a way to win the recent vice presidential contests.