A Friendly Correspondent (FC) e-mails with thoughts on yesterday’s Lu Hardin post, suggesting that those who would write Hardin off based on his recent travails are way off-base. It’s been speculated that Hardin aspires to the governorship in 2014, and FC points out: “Six years is a few thousand political lifetimes, as you know, so I wouldn’t totally count Hardin out of anything.” So true! Hardin strikes me as a wily old dog, and while the current scandal is bad, the damage may not be enduring.
FC, who I take to be something of a Hardin fan, notes that “while there’s no doubt this story deserved the coverage it got, sometimes the stories and editorials did have a certain breathless quality to them. I wonder how big this scandal would have gotten if it had happened in late October, with a presidential campaign in its final days and football in full force.”
Again, FC is correct: Timing is everything in these matters. I would add that the Arkansas media has been spoiling for a fight. Media abhors a vacuum: In the Mike Beebe era of good feelings, without Mike Huckabee to kick around, it was getting to be about time to knock someone down. And Hardin, with the secret bonuses, disregard for transparency and general shiftiness, delivered. Boy, did he ever deliver.
More: Commenter “A Little Much” chides my tongue-in-cheek Lu Hardin Deathwatch reference from yesterday, given Hardin’s recent bout with eye cancer. Hm. Good point. We certainly wish Lu Hardin all the best in winning that fight, so on second thought, let’s call it Lu Hardin Steps Down to Spend More Time With His Family Watch.