The Rubber Stamp Legislature

What’s a legislature for, you ask? Why, to unquestioningly do the bidding of the state’s Democratic Governor, of course..

In the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette this morning, reporter Mike Wickline notes that Tim Gauger, chief legal counsel in the office of Gov. Mike Beebe, is on track to receive a sweet $20,000 raise. He’ll go from $95,508 to $119,667, the story says, once the Legislative Council approves the raise today.

Wickline goes on to report that

None of the 20 or so lawmakers at Thursday’s personnel subcommittee meeting asked why Gov. Mike Beebe requested the increase.

Not a single legislator bothered to even ask why this raise was justified? Hmmm. Thought experiment: If Gov. Mike Huckabee had requested such a raise for one of his employees, do you think legislators would have requested an explanation? Of course they would have, and they’d have been justified in so doing.

A Beebe spokesman later explained that Gauger had a competing job offer, and the salary boost is to ensure that the governor’s office retains his services.

Fair enough. I’m willing to accept that Gauger is a fine attorney, a dedicated public servant, a loving family man and makes a mean cup of coffee. But it’s not too much to expect our legislators to do their jobs and provide a little oversight, even in this Restoration Era. Is it?

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5 thoughts on “The Rubber Stamp Legislature

  • August 15, 2008 at 9:45 am
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    Why not give this individual a raise based on his “merit”. Merit raises are good enough for other state employees. Have a supervisor rate his job performance and if he “exceeds standards” give him a 5% raise. That is what Governor Beebe does with other state employees.

    Reply
  • August 15, 2008 at 9:49 am
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    Congratulations, Bryce! You just raised more critical questions than all the members of the personnel subcommittee combined, Democrat and Republican. Bryce for State Rep!
    D.

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  • August 15, 2008 at 1:31 pm
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    It’s about picking your battles

    Reply
  • August 15, 2008 at 1:43 pm
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    That’s a reasonable and pragmatic point, Insider, which I’d be more prepared to accept if there were someone in state government — Democrats, Republicans, anyone — willing to challenge Beebe on any front. The battle-picking you speak of: When has it happened? When will it happen?

    And to be clear, I do not excuse Republicans on this front at all.
    D.

    Reply
  • August 15, 2008 at 2:51 pm
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    Dont want to be partisan, BUT- i believe this shouldnt be a surprise that our new term-limited legislature (heavily backed by the state and national republican party) doesnt want to stand up to a guy who has more legislative experience than will ever be able to accumulate.

    Keep those chips close, play them later on when a bigger issue comes along like lowering environmental standards!

    Reply

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