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The View from Fort Smith

Things have been a little slow today, because I glanced over some of the Arkansas headlines throughout the day and just saw nothing that moved me to blogging action.

However, here’s a story out of Fort Smith focusing on a pair of key legislative races up that way that’s worth a look.

Reporter Rusty Garrett of the Southwest Times Record catches a candidates’ forum in which Terry Rice (R) and Bill Walters (R Turned Opportunistic D), who are vying for the District 62 House seat, and Stephanie Malone (R) and Mike Bock (D), who are vying for the District 64 House seat, squared off on a range of issues.

If you’re looking for striking ideological differences in the candidates, you’d best look elsewhere, as these are both races where the Democrats are attempting to run more or less as Republicans on the issues.

We’ve given ample coverage to the race between Rep. Steve Breedlove (D) and challenger John Van Gorder (R) in the nearby District 67, but have not yet examined these two races. Anyone with pertinent thoughts or intelligence, lay it out in the comment section.

The Rice-Walters showdown, incidentally, is an emotionally important one for many Republicans I’ve spoken with recently. They deeply resent Walters, who previously served in the legislature as a Republican, for his flip to the Democratic side at the last minute. They’re pulling hard for a Rice victory. (I’ll note also that Walters’ wife, Shirley, currently holds the seat as a Republican. Oddly, Bill Walters’ campaign website is found at the URL, so make of that what you will.)

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2 thoughts on “The View from Fort Smith

  • Rice and Walters is the biggest House race in the state. It is the House version of the Baker White Senate race. Walters picked the worst possible year to switch parties.
    I guess he didn’t think the RPA would have anyone else that wanted to run. I imagine Walters is kicking himself. If Bill had remained a Republican he would be unopposed.

    Terry Rice is as good a candidate as you can find. If Bill Walters is beatable Rice is the man to do it.

    This will be close but I think Walters party switching will cost him against Rice. I think Rice wins this one.

  • Larisia

    i have to say that i do not understand why they insist on calling them selves conservatives and running under the liberal ticket, if you want to be a conservative, then be a conservative. i saw an ad from pam shockley, the woman who is running for treasurer and it says conservative spending, or something like that, and breedlove telling everyone that he is a conservative that is like a mince meat pie telling everyone that they are really a chocolate pie, just so every one will take a piece, and then when you take a bite….yuck


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