Points By Drew Pritt


THE PEOPLE, not Money, WIN!
October 10, 2007, 3:54 am
Filed under: Local Politics

THE PEOPLE WIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

daugherty1.jpg

Robert Michael Daugherty (I)* — 1,446  54%

Anna Swaim (C) ——————– 1,248 46%

I had the opportunity to view the other three candidates for LR School Board, just as I had earlier for Lt. Governor in 2006, up close and personal. Michael Nellums & Anna Swaim were at the forums and Daugherty I ran across at like ACORN and the LR CTA. It was a little uncomfortable because both Daugherty and I shared common friendships and allies so it was hard for many of them to make a definitive decision. But once I lost, and I did get beat, but once I got beat I was out there working hard for Daugherty.

Some asked me why I came to this decision. The reason why is a number of reasons but money played a big part in it.

I always look to see who donates. It says a lot about the candidates, where they come from, and who they listen to if elected. I also looked at how the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and sadly even the Arkansas Times made this into an initiative not on test scores or merit pay but on race and racial politics. Here we are celebrating the integration of Central High fifty years later and the ghosts of that era still plague us.

So on Election Night the first time, I endorsed Daugherty, because thats where the heart of the people lay. In the runoff, the Swaim Camp raised large amounts of money. Money that could have gone to After School Programs went to billboard signs. Money that was raised that could have gone to playground equipment and new ceiling tile paid for direct mail glossy mailers and other forms of advertisement.

You may ask how much was spent? Well Swaim raised $17,000 before the first filing and an additional $12,000, so $39,000 was raised and much spent. Daugherty kept par in some respects that he raised $15,000 and Michael Nellums had raised $3,500. Yours truly raised $100.

More importantly though, the Daugherty & Nellums donations were mainly Zone Two residents or members of the Little Rock Classroom Teachers Association in Daugherty’s case. Swaim’s contributions looked like a Who’s Who of the elite, wealthy, and powerful interests of Little Rock/Central Arkansas who do not live in Zone Two.

Also, Daugherty held two rallies, the second of which I spoke at, and were moderately attended where food was given out and speeches were a lot. Reverend Benny Johnson who does the crosses for the victims of violence was a frequent person there, just like at the Victory Celebration held on John Barrow Road, where food, back slapping, and dancing was seen. The people there live here and more importantly, their kids go to school here. These people who worked for Daugherty I worked alongside for in the Bill Walker for Mayor Campaign, the Diane Curry for School Board Campaign, the Mike Beebe campaign, as far back as Jim Guy Tucker and Charlie Cole Chaffin. These are not wine and cheese socialites doing their duty for selfless service. These are residents of Zone Two who want the best education possible for their kids, their neighbors kids, and everyone who lives in this part of the city.

I walked the streets and hung up mailers with my friends. I called and I emailed. I also blogged and did what I, Joe Q. Citizen with money and a mere sense of public duty could do. I was joined in this effort by The Gang as the Democrat Gazette labeled them (Diane Curry, Charles Armstrong, Katherine Mitchell), as well as Linda Chesterfield, Joyce Elliott, Bill Walker, Tracy Steele, Pat Lynch, Grainger Ledbetter, Brownie Ledbetter, Cathy Koehler, and so many more. We had college students, teachers, pastors, and just plain old everyday working folk from Zone # 2. We worked and this evening, we showed, that VOX POPULI still is true today. The PEOPLE still rule!

Congratulations Robert Michael Daugherty, you won the old fashioned way, you earned it!

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5 Comments so far
Leave a comment

So what do you think the wealthy and powerful wanted for their money?

Do you think they thought they could break the union and get quality education for less money and then cut their own taxes? (in spite of the fact that some contributors spend much more of their own money for private education).

Do you think they feel that Daugherty will propell education in LR to the point the new graduates will be so well educated that they would threaten the big businesses?.

Or do you think it is possible when they try to hire LRSD graduates they see an inferior product and are simply trying to upgrade their base fodder.

Or of course they can do they they have been doing and hire graduates of Conway, Cabot, Bryant and Benton who commute to LR every day.

Comment by mudturtle

What do the wealthy and powerful want? Influence and the ability to maintain the status quo. You know, Mudturtle, you couch your comments with partisan rhetoric and viewing the results of this election, ineffectual rhetoric. The fact is the people showed they still can overcome money and influence.

Comment by drewpritt

Drew:
I read your article. I worked for Nellums and I know it was just an oversight but he only rasied $3500 dollars, and I know you meant to say Swaim’s
contributions looked like a Who’s Who of the elite, wealthy, and powerful interests of Little Rock/Central Arkansas who do not live in Zone Two. You mistakenly said Nellums. We’d appreciate the corrections.
Phil

Comment by Phil Best

Phil its been corrected. Please accept my humblest of apologies.

Comment by drewpritt

Drew: I disagreed with your choice of candidate here, but I’m 100% on board with your criticism of Swaim’s financial backers. The person that voters in Zone 2 elect is the sole business of those voters, and not anyone else. Campaign contributions should be restricted to a candidate’s would-be constituents, in my opinion.

Comment by Servo




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