by Max Brantley
The floor is open. Finishing up:
* GUILTY PLEA BY POCAHONTAS DEVELOPMENT OFFICIAL IN FRAUD CASE: The U.S. attorney announced today that Debra Shannon, 56, for 37 years the chief financial officer of Black River Area Development Corporation in Pocahontas, had pleaded guilty to a mail fraud charge in an 11-year scheme in which she took almost $390,000 from the agency. More details here. Her agency supposedly provides assistance to poor and middle-income people.
* IT DOESN'T GET ANY WORSE THAN LITTLE ROCK: Brookings Institute ranking of 100 cities on economic recovery — employment, output, housing prices — puts Little Rock dead last.
* DANGEROUS, TOO: Little Rock had its 39th homicide of the year last night, against 23 on same day last year.
* WHAT GOOD IS REP. RICK CRAWFORD?: Congress may adjourn without a farm bill and 1st District Democratic challenger Scott Ellington puts the blame on Republican U.S. Rep. Rick Crawford.
"It appears that Congressman Crawford and his Republican leaders are willing to leave Arkansas farmers high and dry," said Prosecutor Scott Ellington. "It's not in the best interest of Arkansas farmers to kick the can down the road. Arkansas farmers don't shut down their combines and tractors and leave the fields at 5 p.m., they work through the night to get the job done. Congress needs to take a lesson from Arkansas farmers, buckle down, and get the job done for Arkansas."
With messages like this, does Ellington really need a campaign manager or money? However, he is having a $250-per fund-raiser in Little Rock tonight hosted by Bumperses, Pryors, Tuckers and a host of other familiar Democratic names. 5-7 p.m. at Boswell Mourot Fine Arts in the Heights.
* READ THIS ARTICLE: Ezra Klein illustrates simply where the biggest burden of taxes fall — all taxes, not just the income tax. Hint: It's not on the rich.
* WORKING WOMEN FOR DEMOCRATS: Candace Martin, the public spokeswoman for the Arkansas Democratic Party, sent a personal-story-rooted e-mail today seeking volunteers for a GOTV effort by Democratic women. For the benefit of women without elevators for their cars:
This time four years ago I was sitting in a conference room interviewing for a job.
Things were going great, and then, we finally got to that inevitable point of the interview when the interviewer asked if I had any questions. I hesitated a minute and then nervously, I asked about the maternity leave policy.
The interviewer was obviously surprised. I was barely showing and had learned by now how to hide my pregnancy. As the mood became uncomfortable, the interviewer said she would check into it and get back with me.
Then, she said something I’ll never forget.
“I’m sorry to ask but I notice you’re not wearing a wedding ring; how do you plan to make that work?”
I had a college degree, a supportive family. I thought to myself; if I couldn’t make it work, how could a single mom working two jobs, trying to finish high school, and provide for her kids make it work?
Well, she does.
I’ve seen it first hand, and my experience has proven to me many times over how strongly I believe in the agenda Arkansas Democrats want to continue: an agenda that focuses on creating good-paying jobs, providing care to hard-working families, continuing to strengthen our schools, and cutting taxes for all Arkansas families.
That’s why I’ve been making phone calls on behalf of Arkansas Democrats at Working Women Wednesdays at the DPA Headquarters. Every Wednesday until the election volunteers come to make phone calls at the headquarters from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. Child care is provided, and a kid-friendly meal is served.
I’d like to ask you to join us this Wednesday so we can elect candidates who truly support Arkansas families. You can register at this link and start helping us today. I know how busy our lives are as parents, but we can all spend at least an hour making phone calls to secure a better future for our families.
Let’s make this work.
See you on Wednesdays,