Friday, April 14, 2006

Fort Smith Debate

Maybe I should wait for one of the other contributors to post this one, but I am pumped about the Fort Smith debate.

I am clearly for Holt, so it would not do much good for me to say he won but I will anyway. He won. It was not a fair contest though, because thanks to Holt County Campaign chairman Lyndell Hobbs, that room was packed to the gills with Holt supporters. Fort Smith is not neutral territory. Since county committee members in the audience could ask questions, that made crowd composition even more critical than normal.

Sebastian County Chairman Kieth Gibson has developed a superior debate format that deserves to catch on. The moderator asks two questions which were answered by each of the candidates. Then members of the committee can address two questions to an individual candidate, the other candidates can address it, then the first candidate can rebut that.

Lastly, the candidates can ask each other a question. The answer gets a rebuttal.

(click "Friday" below and scroll down for article, or just scroll down if sent directly here).


Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

The clearest contrast on the issues had to do with three areas....

1) philosophy of government

Holt emphasized limited government, Matayo emphasized effcient government, and Banks emphasized government projects that have an effect "long after we are gone".

2) Reaction to the State Courts telling the legislature how to run the schools.

Holt said the other branches need to check and balance the court, which has exceeded it's constitutional authority. Banks said that he may not like what the courts have done but they have ruled so any discussion about it is moot. We have to obey. Matayo tried to strike a middle ground. It leaned to the side of satisfying the court's demands, but left some room for legislative and executive discretion

3)Illegal aliens

Banks is for a program where if we catch an illegal alien that has not committed any other crimes, instead of deporting them we inititate a one year program where they must complete government paperwork to be come a citizen.

Matayo does not favor such a program, but maintains that this is a federal not a state issue. He stuck with his support of HB 1525, which would provide scholarhsips for persons who are not legal citizens as long as they pledged to begin the citizenship process.

Holt thinks there is plenty that can be done to discourage illegal immigration on both state and federal level. Part of that would include something like a re-run of his SB 206, which would deny certain public benefits to persons who are in this country illegally and make welfare fraud by such persons more difficult.

Except for some contention on that issue, Matayo and Holt deferred to each other on several occasions, each noting when the other cast a good vote or had a strong legislative record.

The most ominous note of the night was when Chuck Banks was asked (by Holt) point blank if he would honor Reagan's 11th commandment of not speaking ill of another Republican and stick to issues rather than personal attacks. Banks refused to make that commitment. Matayo quickly agreed to honor Reagan's 11th commandment when earlier asked the same question by Holt.

A precursor of that ominous note came earlier. When Banks had a chance to ask another candidate a question, he asked Matayo a question about Jim Holt and his ability to work with others. Because of the format, Holt would have no opportunity to respond. Matayo refused to take the bait, and offered to yield his time to Holt.

Overall, it was a more substantial debate than normal because of the format and the quality of the questions, particularly from Barbara Hardcastle and friends.

Early voting begins in 30 days.

7:55 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gosh, are you partial Moore? You just can't tell.

8:08 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark Moore. Two Corrections to your comments.
1. The most ominous note of the night was when Jim Holt ask Doug Matayo an inapropriate question considering how the mud has been flying to this point. It was like the air had been sucked out of the room. I think Jim came off looking very poor.

2. On your point about the illegal alien issue. Doug Matayo stated that laws on the books need to be enforced. Sounds right to me.

8:14 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

For the sake of Arkansans who do not know as much as people who have been following this campaign, vote for Matayo in May.
He has the efficiency, swerve, tact, and ability to progress our state. Holt and Banks are fine, but Matayo has the experience and drive that a high ranking position like Lt Governor demands.
Holt does not represent most Republicans let alone Arkansans, and Bank's ideas seem tangential to the issues.
Matayo in May AND November.

8:49 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matayo's like, what, 32? That doesn't seem old enough to have real experience. Try another excuse to vote for him.

9:03 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matayo is 34, I believe, and what does that have to do with real experience? There is an 18 year old mayor in some city or town in this country. Holt is only a few years older than Matayo and exactly what better experience does he have?

9:22 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

The whole room was partial- almost all of them for Holt. I said up front in this article I was a Holt guy so what are you crying about?

As for the person who issued the two corrections, I accept your second correction. A complete report on Doug's position last night should include that he wanted to enforce existing law. I guess that puts him ahead of someone who wants a replay of the failed 86 amnesty.

Your first correction I don't accept. We are way ahead in the polls and we wanted to make sure that the candidates will focus on the issues and not personal attacks on the other candidates. Obviously no one can control bloggers, but the candidates themselves and their advertising should stick to the issues and not engage in personal or character attacks of their opponents.

Jim asked both of his opponents the same question on that, will they stick to Reagan's 11th commandment? Doug gave an unqualified yes. I think he showed class there. Jim was not trying to single Doug out or imply that Doug had been nasty. He asked the SAME QUESTION to them both because Jim is ahead and we are afraid that instead of selling themselves people will be tempted to tear Jim down.

Also, I have to admit Doug showed class when Banks tried a lawyer move and interrogate Doug on what he thought of Jim's personal traits. Doug offered his time to Jim and did do not do any dirty work for Chuck. Chuck tried to get Doug to say bad things about Jim that he would not say himself. I thought THAT was a more awkward moment than Jim asking the two candidates the same question. One candidate asking another about the third was more awkward.

9:27 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

To 8:49

The Republican Assembly is composed of people who "have been following this more closely" and they are even more for Jim Holt than the likely Republican voters. At least 66% of them are for Holt while (so far) 59% of the likely voters are. 7% for Matayo and 12% for Banks.

People who know a lot are going for Jim and so is the casual voter.

9:31 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

The person who posted before I got the article up will have to repost. I delete them when they comment before I can finish posting the article.

9:33 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chuck Norris tried to debate Jim Holt- once.

9:44 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark Moore. I can live with your 9:27 answer, but I think it was clear that Jim Holt didn't intend to ask both Doug and Banks the same questian. I think he started his questian to Banks, by saying something like, I was going to ask this questian, but. So I think that your acting like that this was planed is not quite true. As a working class man, I liked Chuck's responce. I don't think he said he would attack, I think he said he would respond in kind. And I think it's fair to say that all side have mud on their hands. I do, don't you Mr. Moore.

9:47 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

It was planned. And Chuck did not commit to following Reagan's 11th commandment. He was asked to commit to that and he did not do it. That can only mean he reserved the right to campaign with personal attacks and not stick with the issues. I should have picked up my camera and recorded that.

9:51 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, but you didn't record it did you? That's so you could misrepresent what Banks said.
Chuck said, as 9:47 stated, that as long as Reagan principles and issues were being talked about, he would stick to Reagan's rule. He then went on to say that if Holt and/or his supporters (this means you Moore)did not stick to the issues, then he would have to "mix it up."
Trying to villify the man for committing to take up for himself is only fair. Banks is NOT one to sit back and let people such as yourself throw mud at/on him.
This was a very smart move on Banks' part. He didn't lie - unlike Doug who stated that he would follow the 11th Commandment, but he has already spoken ill of Holt. Hmm... guess we know who to trust on this front don't we? That's right - it's Banks.

10:19 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There was no need for the question about personal attacks other than to throw off Matayo. He proceeded the question by saying he hated to ask this but... You could tell Holt addressed the question to Banks because he did not get what he wanted from Matayo. Also, Banks did not refuse to commit, he said he would commit as long as Holt would ... if not then Holt was fair game. The question was inappropriate because no one has attacked Holt personally to date, and he is fair game on the issues.

10:21 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matayo has never spoken ill of Holt personally. Matayo sticks to the truth on the issues unlike Holt.

10:28 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

I throw up my hands. You both act paranoid. I don't have to misrepresent anything Chuck Banks has said. Stating his positions accurately is enough. The two of you act like Holt has never been personally attacked so his question was from out of bounds. Everybody following this stuff knows that Holt has had to endure endless slanders. People on the other blog were saying 'don't worry about the poll numbers because Banks has 200K worth of ads and is going to start throwing punches". The question is more than legitimate.

10:44 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Walter S said...

Banks and Matayo have had to endure endless slanders from you all as well. DON'T sit at your computer and act like you all haven't slung mud. It's making you look uninformed - and you're the one who's been slinging!
By the way: who says ads have to be offensive? Can't they be informative? Or is real informative substantive media not practiced in your neck of the woods? I hear the NWA Times does a pretty good job of it.

11:05 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Moore, quote the slanders about Holt made by Matayo or Banks or keep your mouth shut on the subject.

11:52 AM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Got your hands full. I think I will go on to other things. Maybe If you can debate in person and twist things a little so that you can actualy call last night a victory, you should be running and not Jim Holt. He did a poor job.

I still can't see how Jim would be a good Lt. Gov even if he was full time. He can't get laws passed. Very few will work with him. How is he the best option we have? That is a cotton ball.

How can he win in the general? The same people that voted for Bush and that voted for Blanch, will vote for Asa and the Democratic canidate.

Please don't note that he is a man of integerty and headstrong in his views. I think all these men are good men of integerty.

After all is not a record of past accoplishments a good indicator of the future.

Doug can and has gotten great laws passed.

11:54 AM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

Walter I have counterpunched, and hard, but those were issues, not personal attacks. Accurately saying where people are on the issues is not the same as saying someone is an incompetent buffoon. One is a disagreemnet over policy the other is a personal attack.

12:34 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mark- Were you even at the debate last night? To Start off your Leader was late, spoke with his mouthful and asked questions that my 8 year old son would ask. Banks won plain and simple. He had better answers to the questions and his answers actually answered the questions asked. Jump off the holt ship and get on the Chuck Wagon.

12:34 PM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

I will speak, and type, as much as I care to.

Did Jim accuse them of slandering him? No he did not. Nor do I accuse them of personal slanders of Holt. And I have already said no one can control these anonymous bloggers.

Jim was talking about how they would campaign in the future, not accusing them of doing something in the past. We will see. Have a nice day.

12:37 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh come on, Mark, you can't really believe that crap, or can you not see the truth any more? Holt started that question to Matayo with the words "...I really hate to do this...I haven't been looking forward to this...this is hard for me..." Everyone knew he was accusing Matayo of personal attacks, and the air went out of the room. If that's not the pot calling the kettle black, I don't know what is. Everyone knows what Matayo has had to put up with. Way too many of his friends, clients, and fellow church-goers have made Matayo aware of HOLT personally attacking Matayo to their faces. Jim has mud all over's so thick that he can't see clearly anymore.

3:13 PM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Mark Moore (Moderator) said...

I believe it. I know because I talked strategy with him before the debate and we decided it would be good strategy to get them on record. Media campainging (radio, TV, newspapers) is begining soon and we wanted it positive.

The "I hate to do this" was either before that last question (not the one we are discussing) where Jim asked him to resolve the conflict in his spoken and written statements on HB1525, or Jim was debating in his mind one of several other questions and switched over to ask him the 11th commandment question. Jim wandered a bit before he settled in on that question to Doug.

Jim was not calling the kettle, or anyone else, black. It was about the future, not the past. He did not ask them if they HAD campaigned in accord with the 11th commandment, he asked them if they WOULD in the future.

If Jim has mud all over him, it was thrown by others. Any fair person who reads these blogs can understand why Jim would be concerned about it.

4:40 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there any truth to the coffee shop talk that Bill Pritchard has cut a deal with Doug Matayo that they will support each other and run as a team in Springdale? I guess it would make sense for both of them, but I'm not sure they will be able to overcome the opposition without some public support from the leadership at First Baptist, which I think is very unlikely in the primary. I also heard that Pritchard had hired that college kid who dropped out to work for him. I think that rumor is probably not true, because it would send the wrong signal to the other candidates in District 93.

7:11 PM, April 14, 2006  
Blogger Steve Harrelson said...

I doubt that's true, but I think Pritchard would make a good Senator. This is a guy that was elected Chair of the Freshman Caucus -- impressive for a Republican well outnumbered by Ds in his class.

7:39 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, at least Banks went on record with the truth - saying that he will stay positive as long as everyone else stays to the Reagan Republican issues. No, that's not saying that he won't get in the mud, but it is saying that he won't be the first to sling it.

7:58 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

7:11--No, that is not true.

7:59 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

4:40--Sure Jim would like to go on with the future. That way, he doesn't have to be accountable for his mud-slinging past.

8:01 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is that the same Steve Harrellson that is the new Speaker of the House? Welcome.

8:26 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does the Freshman Caucus do exactly? I've never heard of it or of it actually having any power or influence. Sounds like a group that might have a lobbyist-sponsored party or two. can someone explain why this is important and what Pritchard accomplished during his term?

Still, it is interesting to see the new House Democratic Leader endorsing a GOP Senate candidate in a Republican primary, especially in a race where a D is running in the general election.

10:53 PM, April 14, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:53 don't you get it? The Dems want Pritchard to get the nomination because he is the weaker candidate and would be easier to beat in November than Jim Bob.

6:18 AM, April 15, 2006  
Blogger Steve Harrelson said...

Well, Majority Leader, but thanks. And I didn't mean for my comment to be taken as anything against Dugger -- I just don't know him. I don't know Lynn Carver either. I've worked with Bill and have found him to be very effective.

6:26 AM, April 15, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think it helps Pritchard's campaign to get praised by a liberal Democrat who voted against the legislation to protect the sanctity of military funerals, but no one ever accused the Democrats of being smart. Just don't endorse Jim Bob, because he's doing just fine without phony endorsements from outsiders meant to sink his campaign.

Somebody should tell this guy to stay out of our primary. Stick with the cross-dressers in his own party instead of trying to cross-vote in our primary to nominate the weakest link.

12:36 PM, April 15, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

12:36--I would watch the name-calling. You're forgetting that if Duggar should win, he will be a subordinate to this guy. Good luck for him to ever get on any good committees.

4:40 PM, April 15, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey harrelson write something on your blog already

9:51 PM, April 19, 2006  
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