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Readings in Arkansas Politics and Government

Janine A. Parry

Publication Year: 2009

Readings in Arkansas Politics and Government brings together in one volume some of the best available scholarly research, both new and not so new, on a wide range of topics and issues of interest to students of politics and government in the Natural State.

Published by: University of Arkansas Press

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. vii-x

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pp. xi-xii

Every book is the product of the work of many more people than those whose names appear on the cover. In the case of this edited volume, the number of people deserving of thanks is likely in the hundreds. In the interest of space, we first extend our gratitude to the writers and scholars ...

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pp. xiii-xiv

It has been more than ten years since students—and practitioners—of Arkansas politics were treated to a compilation of the most current historical, legal, and social science research. Now, with the publication of Readings in Arkansas Politics and Government, Janine Parry and Richard Wang make a major contribution ...

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pp. xv-xvi

Devotees of Arkansas politics and government are as passionate as they are numerous. The editors of this collection have long felt a strong kinship with the hundreds—even thousands—of reporters, editors, academics, jurists, pollsters, teachers, lawmakers, bureaucrats, and others scattered across the state, now and in decades past, ...

Part I: Foundations and Context in Arkansas Politics and Government

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Political Culture, Political Attitudes, and Aggregated Demographic Effects: Regionalism and Political Ideology in Arkansas

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pp. 3-16

Regionalism—specifically, the distinct social, political, and economic patterns that distinguish the Arkansas Ozarks from the Arkansas Delta—has long been an important factor in Arkansas politics. What are these differences and why do they exist? ...

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The Proposed Arkansas Constitution of 1970

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pp. 17-38

Arkansas’s current constitution is its fifth. Adopted in 1874 on the heels of “Radical Reconstruction,” the antiquated document long has been an object of derision for civic groups, journalists, and scholars.Yet each attempt to replace it with a new charter has been rejected by the voting public. ...

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Intelligible, Honest, and Impartial Democracy: Making Laws at the Arkansas Ballot Box; or, Why Jim Hannah and Ray Thornton Were Right about May v. Daniels

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pp. 39-62

In the 2004 election, state voters were asked not only to support an incumbent president’s bid for a second term but, also to give their approval to a proposal amending the Arkansas Constitution to define marriage as consisting “only of the union of one man and one woman” and establishing that relationships ...

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The Antievolution Law: Church and State in Arkansas

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pp. 63-84

This case study was written a quarter of a century ago by one of the state’s most respected intellectuals and political activists.Though the study itself is dated, the issues it raises are as salient today as they ever were. The proximate issue enjoined in this study is the constitutionality of Arkansas’s antievolution law, ...

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Low Villains and Wickedness in High Places: Race and Class in the Elaine Race Riots

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pp. 85-104

In the fall of 1919, the small Phillips County town of Elaine, Arkansas, became the scene of one of the most violent racial conflicts the country had ever to that time experienced. Not surprisingly, the Elaine Race Riot has generated numerous scholarly efforts over the years and continues to fascinate researchers, ...

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A Place at the Table: Hot Springs and the GI Revolt

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pp. 105-124

Most readers will be at least broadly familiar with Arkansas’s long history of political corruption. Garland County—Hot Springs, in particular—was the home of an especially blatant example of crooked politics well into the twentieth century. Relying largely upon the manipulation of poll tax receipts as a way of engineering election outcomes ...

Part II: Policymaking Institutions in Arkansas Politics and Government

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“The Great Negro State of the Country”?: Black Legislators in Arkansas, 1973-2000

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pp. 127-156

Scholars thus far have paid little attention to African American political participation at the state level. Here, Parry and Miller provide an introduction to black legislative activity in the state of Arkansas with a focus on descriptive and substantive representation issues. ...

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Term Limits in Arkansas: Opportunities and Consequences

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pp. 157-166

Ignoring warnings, some from the academic community, that establishing limits on the number of terms candidates for state offices can serve could have dire consequences for state government (for example, they could upset the balance of power between the legislative and executive branches, or could increase the influence of special interests in the state capitol), ...

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Arkansas Governors in the Twentieth Century: A Ranking and Analysis

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pp. 167-186

Americans seem to like to rank-order everything—sports teams (“Top Twenty College Football Programs”), academic institutions (“Best and Worst American Universities”), cities (“One Hundred Most Livable Communities in America”), restaurants (“Ranked Number one for the Last Ten Years”), and more. ...

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A Practitioner’s Guide to Arkansas’s New Judicial Article

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pp. 187-196

In introducing this selection in its original form, the editors of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Law Review wrote “The passage of Amendment 80 on November 7, 2000 was a watershed event in the history of the Judicial Department of this state. Jurisdictional lines that previously forced cases to be divided artificially and litigated separately ...

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History, Political Culture, and Constitutional Reform in Arkansas

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pp. 197-214

Arkansas’s 1874 Constitution, one of the oldest among the fifty states and dubbed the “Thou Shalt Not” Constitution, is woefully inadequate to the increasing demands on state government in the early twenty-first century. This, quite simply, is the judgment of most students of Arkansas government and politics, including the authors of this study. ...

Part III: Practicing Politics in Arkansas Politics and Government

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Orval E. Faubus: Out of Socialism into Realism

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pp. 217-232

Gov. Orval E. Faubus was arguably the best loved, the most hated, and, according to Roy Reed at least, the most misunderstood public figure of twentieth-century Arkansas. Influenced by the politics of his father, a former secretary of the Madison County Socialist Party, Faubus developed radical politics as a young man ...

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Noblesse Oblige and Practical Politics: Winthrop Rockefeller and the Civil Rights Movement

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pp. 233-250

As the first Republican to serve as governor of Arkansas (1967–71) since Reconstruction, a transplant from New York, and a member of one of the most prominent families in America, Winthrop Rockefeller has generated more than his share of attention from the scholarly community. ...

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The Arkansas Electorate

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pp. 251-264

In 1968 Arkansas voters simultaneously returned an anti-Vietnam Democrat to the U.S. Senate, retained their first post-Reconstruction Republican in the governor’s mansion, and cast their electoral college votes for the segregationist nominee of the American Independent Party. ...

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“What Women Wanted”: Arkansas Women’s Commissions and the ERA

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pp. 265-292

Women’s commissions, government-authorized task forces charged with studying and advancing the status of women, have a long history within the United States and abroad. Here, the author examines Arkansas’s experience with these public agencies, focusing on their participation in the vigorous 1970s debate over ratification of the national Equal Rights Amendment. ...

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A Crime Unfit to Be Named: Arkansas and Sodomy

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pp. 293-306

This essay is about sodomy in Arkansas—or, more accurately, it is the story of three decades of cultural and legal change in the state (and nation) with respect to gays and lesbians and sexual privacy. As presented by the author, the events that most directly define this changing environment include: ...

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The Big Three of Late-Twentieth-Century Arkansas Politics: Dale Bumpers, Bill Clinton, and David Pryor

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pp. 307-326

In this essay, Professor Blair profiles the political careers of three of the most prominent Arkansans of the last century: David Pryor, Dale Bumpers, and Bill Clinton—the “Big Three.” She does so because she has a desire to share her thoughts, generated over decades of work as a social scientist and political activist, ...

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Outsiders and the Amateur Legislature: A Case Study of Legislative Politics

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pp. 327-340

The authors of this case study are interested in accounting for the variation across state legislatures in the power and influence of interest groups over the policy-making process in state government. The essence of their argument is that part-time (“amateur”) state legislatures tend to be more open to influence by “outsiders,” ...

Part IV: Policy Issues and Political Patterns for the Twenty-first Century in Arkansas Politics and Government

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Arkansas: More Signs of Momentum for Republicanism in Post–“Big Three” Arkansas

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pp. 343-360

The 1990s looked promising for the arrival of a competitive, twoparty system in Arkansas. The adoption of term limits for state executives and legislators, a long-overdue switch to publicly funded primary elections, and a handful of high-profile Republican victories would, according to most observers, make the state more fertile for Republicans. ...

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Arkansas: Still Swingin’ in 2004

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pp. 361-384

Arkansas has been a fickle friend to both Democratic and Republican presidential candidates for decades. Between 1960 and 2000, Arkansans’ electoral college votes were awarded to Republicans five times, Democrats five times, and to independent candidate George Wallace in 1968. ...

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Education Reform in Arkansas: Hitting a Moving Target

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pp. 385-404

Because public schools long have been the chief priority of state governments in the United States, education nearly always tops the policy priority lists of both citizens and lawmakers. Here, Professor Ritter, a former schoolteacher who is now a professor of education policy, recounts Arkansas’s recent efforts to improve the state’s educational situation. ...


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pp. 405-462


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pp. 463-466


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pp. 467-484

E-ISBN-13: 9781610753388
E-ISBN-10: 1610753380
Print-ISBN-13: 9781557289032
Print-ISBN-10: 1557289034

Page Count: 432
Publication Year: 2009