Correction: McDaniel column must’ve been misfire

Well, the columnist can’t hit a home run every day.

I’m starting to wonder if maybe I didn’t strike out last week, or maybe pop-out to foul territory, in a kind of detached and mildly sympathetic analysis of Attorney General Dustin McDaniel’s sex-induced woe.

I came back from his news conference moderately impressed with his performance under stress and inclined to impart generous analysis. I sought to establish some context based on the fact that tomcatting politicians are not unheard-of among otherwise worthy public servants. Tomcatting is not unheard-of in the general population, either.

I’ve known some maritally unfaithful politicians who weren’t bad on public policy. Haven’t you?

I’ve had a lot of conversations since then. People have said nice things about this column or that. But no one has said anything nice about that one. People have talked plenty, though, about Dustin and his problem, and no one seems to have sized up the matter remotely in the way I sized it up.

Just last night, from a liberal woman: “Who in the world advised him to stand up there and have that news conference? That was a loser from the get-go.”

And this: “500 text messages yet to come? Let me tell you something: One text message would be too many for this guy here,” as she nudged the gentleman next to her, her husband.

And there’s that poll: McDaniel losing to the personality-challenged Asa Hutchinson by 46-33 and having a positive-to-negative of 25-40.

Jay Barth, the Hendrix pundit, had a worthwhile view in the Arkansas Times. He said everything in McDaniel’s news conference was good until he talked about the politics in a way that seemed to have him saying he would be fine.

Barth thought McDaniel should have limited his message to his personal remorse and to his assertion that there was no compromising of any state legal case or public trust in his dalliance.

That’s probably right.

For political purposes, McDaniel probably should not have spoken to his political purposes.

Then I was walking away from the Political Animals Club meeting the other day with a plugged-in Democratic operative who just raised his eyebrow when I wondered aloud if McDaniel might end up having to drop out of the race.

Then the plugged-in Democratic operative started talking about how I ought to get to know John Burkhalter, the businessman and highway commissioner who intends to make the Democratic gubernatorial race. Don’t dismiss him; he has some money; he has some skills. Or so the guy said.

So then I got this extensive email from a Democratic insider touting Shane Broadway, an uncommonly nice and generally competent young Beebe-ite Democrat who got 49 percent for lieutenant governor against Mark Darr even against the Tea Party revolution of 2010.

Shane is popular in the party and could shore up women’s votes, vital to Democrats and alienated from Dustin at the moment.

And now Dustin is doing some desperate demagoguery on guns, suggesting he’d go to court to fight the evil Barack Obama and  preserve the sovereign Second Amendment rights of Arkansawyers possessed of military weapons and resisting uniform background checks.

May as well go with Asa.

Oh, yes: Bill Halter. He’s lurking out there somewhere. He always seems to be.




9 Responses to 'Correction: McDaniel column must’ve been misfire'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Correction: McDaniel column must’ve been misfire'.

  1. In re: Asa Hutchinson. Once upon a time I told you Asa is not Tim. John, you need to listen to me. Calling one of the most gracious people I know “personality-challenged” is dunderheaded. Really, John? Really? Go sit down with Asa. Get to know him for the intelligent, reasoned, thoughtful man he is.


    18 Jan 13 at 12:11 pm

  2. rosemary: i fully agree, and have long known through personal interaction, that asa is intelligent, thoughtful and reasoned. gracious, too. none of that means he has any personality. fact of the matter is that tim, lesser altogether, had more personality. asa probably can’t help it; he’s just got a strong guarded instinct. but it impairs his political ambition. best politicians have more personal presence and a gift of gab.


    18 Jan 13 at 12:23 pm

  3. that’s better Brummett… are better than the first article you wrote on this subject…..glad to see you admit it….


    18 Jan 13 at 12:27 pm

  4. John – please use your platform to encourage the AR Democratic party to find a better candidate for Governor than McDaniel. I was totally unimpressed with him throughout his political career, and this latest escapade has sunk him completely as an acceptable candidate. And we sure don’t want Asa – another uncompromising gun advocate – to get more of an edge than he already has. Thanks.

    Louise Miller

    18 Jan 13 at 12:42 pm

  5. On your column expressing such extreme surprise that a Republican was “actually capable of cognitive logic” and was willing to work to make sure the poor received medical care. Mr. Brummet, we were ALWAYS capable of “cognitive logic” and concerned about how the poor would receive medical care–the only lack here was yours, in assuming we were not. As for the Medicaid conundrum facing Arkansas about whether or not to opt in, there are many good points to doing so, as you enumerated. My only reservation would be whether the Feds will keep their word, once states have opted in to the expanded program, and not renege under the pressure of budget constraints and stick the states with yet another “unfunded mandate”.

    It’s a sad fact that when the Fed govt. removes so much money from the state’s coffers to stuff down the insatiable maw of the ever-expanding Federal govt., they severely limit the states’ ability to afford these “unfunded mandates”. It is also true that many of these programs the Federal govt. has appropriated to “manage” would be much better handled at the state, regional, or even local level–simply because solutions crafted closer to the problem usually make more sense and work better than one-size-fits-all bureaucratic edicts handed down from an all-powerful central source.

    And lest we forget, “Federal money” is not free. Somebody has to pay for it somewhere along the line. There is no Santa Claus magically producing money from an unlimited source.

    Because we Conservatives differ in our ideas of how to solve these problems does not mean we do not care about them, or that we are, as you constantly accuse, idiots or unthinking troglodytes.

    A little less leftist name-calling (while loudly accusing Conservatives of being “haters” would go a long way toward making the conversation more civil.

    JoAnn Graham

    18 Jan 13 at 12:50 pm

  6. Just for the record, there are many of us “Conservatives” that deplore the sort-sighted “ideological purist” types, because their attitude of “all or nothing” is self-defeating, at best–as the 2012 election results attest. Many of us argued that point until we were blue in the face before the election, to no avail. Having said that, we get real tired of being tarred with the same brush you reserve for the ideologues.

    JoAnn Graham

    18 Jan 13 at 1:20 pm

  7. […] By jbrummett […]

  8. Did yall notice this week, Lt Gov Darr said he had been on a fact finding tour of China, and Sec Martin had toured Europe
    Why in hell would these tea party ” conservatives” have any more right to squander tax $ than lib dems
    Where o where are you tonite Win Rock

    mike graves

    18 Jan 13 at 2:33 pm

  9. Political candidates need to be tall, thin, and have hair. Lefthanded helps too.

    bill kennamer

    18 Jan 13 at 5:41 pm

Leave a Reply


Copyright © 2018 Arkansas Democrat-Gazette