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The Week That Was, Feb. 16-22

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Feb. 16-22, 2011

It was a good week for ...

EARTHQUAKES. Tremors continued to rattle Faulkner County, some strong enough that vibrating store shelves were caught on store cameras. Related to gas drilling activity? Suspicions continue.

NORTH LITTLE ROCK. Three days of celebrations marked the opening of the Argenta Community Theater, a new jewel on the increasingly jazzy Main Street corridor. Bill Clinton and Mary Steenburgen were among the big names on hand for the final gala.

It was a bad week for ...

REP. JUSTIN HARRIS. The government-cutting Republican from West Fork who wants to require proof of citizenship for all government services? Turns out he make tens of thousands of dollars every year at his government-financed church daycare center, including from children who haven't produced proof of citizenship. (See Max Brantley's column.)

REP. JOHN BURRIS. Another tax- and government-cutting Republican, he was exposed in the Democrat-Gazette as recipient of a junket by a social service agency, which, thanks to his quiet lobbying with the Department of Human Services, has received taxpayer funding.

The SICK AND POOR. The U.S. House, with votes of all four members from Arkansas, voted to block funding the health law that expands health coverage for millions of Americans, many previously denied coverage on account of illness. The Senate won't go along, thank goodness.

The ARKANSAS REPUBLICAN PARTY. To his credit, GOP Chairman Doyle Webb had forced John Casteel of Newport, proud member of a racist organization, to resign as Jackson County Republican chairman. Members of the GOP 1st District caucus sent a message of their feelings by electing Casteel as a representative on the committee that recommends people for political appointments. With Democrats in power, there's not much work for the committee to do right now, but when there is, Casteel will be ready to nominate his kind of people. The organization he refused to quit is, as he says, "pro-white."

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