Rep. Linda Tyler of Conway, in one of the year's hottest state Senate races, is going head-to-head against opponent Jason Rapert, the extremist Republican who moved his address to Conway from Bigelow to better make the race in a redrawn district (not to change districts as I originally wrote). Head-on is the only way. He and the Koch Bros and other "independent" groups have been savaging Tyler, generally dishonestly.
It is one of those "clear choice" races. Its outcome might well serve as the defining illustration of whether Arkansas voters continue to prefer a middle-of-the-road or extremist right-wing approach to governance.
TYLER NEWS RELEASE
CONWAY, ARKANSAS — Representative Linda Tyler launched a new television ad starting this week called “Which Way.” The ad presents the clear choice between a vote for Linda Tyler and a vote for her opponent, Jason Rapert.
The ad highlights Tyler’s record of leadership in the Arkansas House of Representatives working alongside Governor Mike Beebe.
Tyler has voted to cut taxes, including continuing the grocery tax cut. She voted for balanced budgets every year, making Arkansas one of only four states to begin the last three years with no deficits and balanced budgets. Tyler has supported efforts that have created 27,000 new jobs, including the Governor’s Quick Action Closing Fund, which helped attract HP to Conway. She also has championed legislation to improve our public schools, now ranked fifth in the nation by Education Week.
“I am proud of my record in the Arkansas House, working with Governor Beebe to keep Arkansas on the right path,” Tyler said. “Conway, and surrounding areas, have seen tremendous growth in recent years because this is a great place to live and because we have put policies in place that have made this a more attractive place to start and grow a business and raise a family.”
Despite attempts to cover up his record, Jason Rapert has served as an obstacle to Governor Beebe, standing against Beebe’s priorities.
In 2012, Rapert voted against Beebe’s balanced budget,1 a vote that would have denied funding to public schools, colleges like the University of Central Arkansas, the state Economic Development Commission and other important priorities, had legislators like Linda Tyler not succeeded in passing the balanced budget.
Rapert was no where to be found when a bureaucratic rule change threatened to saddle Conway High School with a $500,000 bill for job-training programs currently offered to students.
Linda Tyler successfully fought against the rule change, saving this important program for Conway students.
Rapert has benefited from advertisements and mailings, many of which have falsely attacked Tyler’s record, paid for by out-of-state special interest groups with little connection to Arkansas besides paid operatives.2
“There is a clear choice in this election, and our new commercial presents that case very clearly,” said Tyler.