by Max Brantley
We're more than halfway done and the line is open, early because of snow hysteria. The Senate recessed early today for the rest of the week. The House approved the joint recess resolution, but may continue to meet. UPDATE: The House will remain in session this week, a spokesman said. Finishing up otherwise:
* MURDER MYSTERY: The murder of beauty queen Nona Dirksmeyer in Russellville gets renewed attention from NBC Dateline, a full hour during the show at 7 p.m. Friday. The promo: "Dateline correspondent Keith Morrison has the surprising new twists in a 7-year-old murder mystery of who really killed beauty queen."
* VOTE LIKE A KOCHHEAD: Americans for Prosperity, the Koch Bros. political lobby, has issued report cards on Congress. You can read it here. The lower your grade, the more likely it is that your are serving the public interest rather than tax-dodging polluters who favor undemocratic elections and throwing sick poor people to the wolves. AFP naturally touts the D they've given Sen. Mark Pryor. Who knew he was that good? What's surprising is that Dr. No Boozman and Reps. Rick Crawford and Tiny Tim Griffin of Bauxite only merited B grades? They voted against the Kochs on something? Hard to imagine. Reps. Mike Ross and Steve Womack got C grades on votes last year. Surely Rep. Tom Cotton of the Club for Growth will get an A first time he's rated. Refusing disaster aid for storm victims is the kind of thing the Kochs should REALLY like.
* FORGET WALKIN' IN MEMPHIS. HOW ABOUT RHYTHMIC GYMNASTICS: Memphis Flyer reports that Memphis has been invited to submit a bid to host the 2024 Olympics.
* BODY ART: With jobs, medical care and education solved, the Arkansas legislature has turned its attention to lesser topics. Take Sen. Missy Irvin. Please. She's worried about "body art procedures," particularly preventing artists from doing dermal implants and scarification.
* ETHICS: Speaking of important legislative stuff .... I should mention my column this week in which I remember Republican Sen. Jane English's promise to clean up state ethics law so that consulting firms can no longer continue to evade disclosure on how they spend money on ballot issue campaigns. Does this have Stepford OK? If so, it should be easy.