Dems Talking Big on Cigarette Tax

Remember last week when Arkansas Democrats were all puffed up about their big Monday news conference in which they’d boast GOP support for Gov. Mike Beebe’s grand scheme to raise the cigarette tax? Oh, they were going to show us, weren’t they, with their mighty insurmountable wall of bipartisan support.

Well, it’s Monday, and guess what? This grand swell of GOP supporters amounted to two (2) people, neither of whom is a current officeholder: former GOP Rep. Mary Beth Green and lobbyist Richard Bearden.

That’s not to say the Dems won’t have the votes—House Speaker Robert “Robbie” Wills is still acting mighty confident. But the big show we were expecting today was decidely unimpressive as a show of force.

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3 thoughts on “Dems Talking Big on Cigarette Tax

  • February 2, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    Who else thinks this whole session is just about making sure Robbie Wills gets a good government job after his term as Speaker is over? I see no evidence that Wills has done anything but exactly what Gov. Beebe has asked him to do.

    I wonder where Robbie will work when Beebe hires him, and I wonder how much they’ll pay him.

  • February 2, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    Well, Mary Beth showing up means that they at least have Rick’s vote. He will do what he is told to do by Mary Beth.

    Bearden’s support is simply an economic decision. The wrong decision for his company means poor economics. Follow the money, it’s that simple.

  • February 2, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    Last week an email went out from the state Democratic Party urging everyone to support the tax hike “as Democrats.” Some of us found this appeal unpersuasive. Now we are being told that the trauma initiative is a bipartisan effort. I don’t think that line of argument is working very well either. The advocates of big government and higher taxes have to get 75 out of 100 votes in the House, and it’s starting to look as if they’re having a tough time.


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