It was a GOOD week for …
LEGISLATING. The General Assembly convened its first “fiscal” session, a biannual exercise mandated by a voter-approved constitutional amendment. With little extra money to spend, all were hoping for a quick and routine exercise.
HOG BASKETBALL. The men's team won four SEC games in a row and found themselves on top of division standings. Also, a special prosecutor concluded that no criminal charges were warranted against three basketball players who engaged in sex acts with a UA freshman at a fraternity party last August.
COLLEGE STUDENTS. Though Gov. Mike Beebe expressed some concern about sufficiency of revenue, the legislature seemed poised to give $5,000 annual scholarships to present and future four-year college students from lottery revenue.
HAROLD BAILEY of Conway. He picked up an $8 million check for a Powerball win after first unlisting his telephone number. When a reporter went calling to ask him about his winning, a man believed to be Bailey displayed a revolver and ran him off.
It was a BAD week for …
The POOR AND SUFFERING. State officials began talking about ways to cut $400 million in Medicaid spending in Arkansas next year.
ORATORY. Rep. John Boozman entered the race for U.S. Senate. If he wins the nomination to oppose Sen. Blanche Lincoln, the prospects of scintillating speechmaking are slim. (See John Brummett.)
MICHAEL STEELE. The Republican National Committee chairman told a UALR audience — to guffaws — that $1 million wasn't a lot of money to make in a year, after taxes. Spoken like a man who shared a $40,000 fee with Harold Ford for about an hour's work, courtesy of col-lege students' fees.
SEN. BLANCHE LINCOLN. For no particular reason, she volunteered that she opposed trying a terror suspect in civilian courts, undercut-ting the Obama administration and supporting the Republican noise machine.