Monday, August 31, 2009

Rick Crawford Announces Official Bid for Congress; Outlines Legislative Priorities

*Note: The Lonoke County Republican Committee does not endorse any candidate until after the primary election.*

Last Thursday, Rick Crawford formally announced his candidacy for a 2010 run for Arkansas’ First District as United States House of Representatives. At present, he will be running against the Democrat incumbent Congressman Marion Berry. Crawford's announcement was made at a public event held at the farm of David Hodges in Jonesboro, Arkansas.

Crawford was literally born in the service of his country on a military base while his father served. After graduating from high school, Rick enlisted in the United States Army where he served as a bomb disposal technician. He served four years and advanced to the rank of Sergeant and earned numerous medals for service in the U.S. and Southwest Asia. He also had the privilege of serving on numerous U.S. Secret Service security details supporting presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush among other U.S. and foreign dignitaries. He understands his "oath" to preserve and to protect the United States of America and the need to support our military.

After serving in the Army, Rick attended Arkansas State University in Jonesboro and earned a B.A. in Agriculture Business and Economics. Since graduating, Rick’s career has been primarily focused on agriculture in both agri-communications and general agri-business. He has been a news anchor and agri-reporter on KAIT-TV in Jonesboro, Farm Director on KFIN-FM in Jonesboro and producer/anchor of the syndicated Delta Farm Roundup TV show airing in Cape Girardeau, Missouri; Jonesboro, Arkansas; and Greenville, Mississippi. Rick has also been a featured agri-columnist in the Northeast Arkansas Business Today publication. He now owns and operates the AgWatch Network – a farm news network heard on 39 radio stations in Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Mississippi and Kentucky as well as TV stations in Little Rock and Jonesboro.

In 2006, Rick also helped shape agriculture and agriculture policy for former Republican Congressman and Undersecretary of Homeland Security Asa Hutchison in his bid to be Arkansas Governor. Rick is a broadcast council member of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting. Rick is also a member of the 4-H Foundation Board of Arkansas. Rick currently serves as first vice-chairman of the Craighead County GOP Committee. Rick and his wife Stacy - also an ASU Alumnus - live in Jonesboro. They have two children – four-year-old Will and 22-month-old Delaney.

Crawford outlined his legislative priorities for the many in attendance.

“Today marks a new day in the First District”, Crawford said. “I am a small businessman, I own an agri-business and understand the challenges farmers face, and I am a military veteran who is better qualified to represent the First District of Arkansas than the incumbent”. Crawford went on to outline his priorities for Congress; “We need to grow the economy, create jobs, and rein in federal spending.”

Crawford emphasized his conservative philosophy on the role of the federal government. “It is time we take conservative principles, Arkansas values, and tested leadership back to Washington and get our nation back on track”.

Crawford also outlined key initiatives that will benefit the lives of the everyday Arkansans:

The Economy
  • Cut taxes across the board for every taxpayer
  • More incentives for businesses to mitigate risks and create jobs

Federal Spending & The National Debt
  • Cut wasteful spending and start paying off our national debt
  • Reduce the size of our government so businesses can grow again and prosperity can be realized by every American

Healthcare Reform
  • No government run health care
  • No public option
  • No government funded abortions, end of life counseling programs, or euthanasia initiatives
  • Free market principles to help bring costs down and increase access to quality care

  • Create programs where farmers can mitigate risk through tax credits and tax cuts so farmers are not leveraged every year
  • Allow farmers to have group insurance coverage like other businesses

“Today starts a new day in which the voices of everyday Arkansans will be heard in Washington”, Crawford said. “As your next Representative, you can be assured I will stand for your values in Congress.”

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tea Party Express is Coming to LR

You may have noticed the tide is turning on President Obama and his Democratic allies of late. Many have now announced his health care "reform," more affectionately known as Obamacare, is dead unless he gives up his much heralded public option. His administration has floated trial balloons for that idea and those balloons have been quickly shot down by the far left of the Democratic party. The left-wing Democrats' definition of bipartisanship appears to be everyone jumping aboard their ship. Now they're threatening to trash Senate tradition and use what they have termed the "nuclear option" to pass Obama's unpopular reform.

Much of the President's reversal of legislative fortunes can be attributed to the populist movement evidenced in protests and town halls across the nation. Democrats and liberal special interests have tried in vain to first sway these voices, then discredit them, and finally frighten them into silence. None of their disreputable tactics have worked. The protests continue and voters who know more about the legislation than do their elected representatives continue to show up to town halls and refute the outright lies passed off by Democrats in Congress.

Your chance to be one of those standing up to ward off the President's attempt to nationalize our health care system is at hand. This Friday, September 4th, at 6:00 pm hundreds will gather on the steps of the state Capitol to make their elected officials aware of their dissatisfaction with the way things are going in Washington.

The Tea Party Express bus tour is en route on a 7,000 mile winding trek from Sacramento, CA to Washington, DC. The tour will end in DC on September 12 to coincide with the 9/12 Taxpayer March on DC. But we are fortunate enough to be a part of this historic movement this Friday.

So join us on Friday. Bring signs if you like, but the main thing needed is numbers to make a statement that can no longer be ignored by our representatives in DC.

The Tea Party Express national bus tour will host a series of tea party rallies all across the nation. The effort will begin in California and travel eastward, building momentum as the tour reaches its final destination: the big 09.12.09 Taxpayer March on D.C.

At each stop the tour will highlight some of the worst offenders in Congress who have voted for higher spending, higher taxes, and government intervention in the lives of American families and businesses. These Members of Congress have infringed upon the freedom of the individual in this great nation, and its time for us to say: "Enough is Enough!"

The "Tea Party Express" tour will feature leaders in the anti-tax, conservative, tea party movement along with musical performances of "American Tea Party Anthem" and "A Bailout Song" at each tea party event.

Download Flyer to Print and Distribute

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

More Health Care Events This Week

If you missed the Recess Rally last Saturday or the "Hands Off Our Health Care Rally" on Monday, you still have an opportunity to let our Democratic DC officials hear what you have to say about President Obama's dream of a government-run health care system.

On Wednesday, August 26, 2009, at 4:30 pm, the Pulaski County Tea Party will gather at the State Capitol for another stop by the "Hands Off My Health Care" tour bus stop. Americans for Prosperity is funding the tour and will be gathering signatures on a petition demanding our legislators oppose any bill that "imposes greater government control over my health care..."

WhatHands Off Our Health Care Rally
WhenAugust 26, 2009 @ 4:30 pm
WhereState Capitol

On Thursday, August 27, 2009, at 2:00 pm, Representative Vic Snyder will be holding a town hall meeting at the University of Central Arkansas. This one is being pushed hard by President Obama's permanent campaign organization, Organizing for America. In fact, attendees are asked to RSVP through OFA's website. Conservatives who oppose Obamacare should attend this event if at all possible to guarantee our voices are heard. Doors will open at 1:00, so get there early to make sure you get a seat.

WhatVic Snyder Town Hall
WhenAugust 27, 2009 @ 2:00 pm
WhereUniversity of Central Arkansas
Reynolds Performance Hall
Rooms 5A & 5B
201 Donaghey Avenue
Conway, AR 72035

On Friday, August 28, 2009, Republican candidate David Meeks, who seeks to unseat Vic Snyder in the 1st district, will hold a town hall meeting at UALR. "Secure Arkansas will have a panel discussion and townhall meeting Friday August 28th 7-9pm at UALR. Following the panel discussion, there will be statements by any attending candidates and then townhall discussions."

If at all possible, please attend at least one of these events to help defeat the Democrats' government-run health care plan. Our side has the momentum, but we must keep up the fight if we hope to keep health care decisions between doctor and patient, with no government bureaucrat wedging himself in between.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Tell Sen. Lincoln to Say No to Gov't-Run Health Care

President Obama's stubborn clinging to his dream of a government-run health care system has recently given our party some much needed traction in the battle for the American electorate. He and other leaders of the Democratic party have slandered concerned citizens across America who've stood up and voiced their opposition to what has become known as "Obamacare."

Condemning conservative Americans who exercise their 1st Amendment rights as "un-American" and members of "angry mobs," Democratic leaders imply the rights of free speech and freedom to peaceably assemble somehow subvert the Constitution and the ideals of the founders when utilized by those who disagree with left-wing ideology.

Our own Democratic Senator Blanche Lincoln cast her lot with those condemning citizens who don't trust government bureaucrats with the decisions now left to patients and their doctors. Calling their opinions "unproductive" and "un-American," Lincoln's excuses for not originally scheduling town hall meetings this month didn't fly with Arkansas voters. The resulting backlash from insulting her constituents led the Democratic Senator to retreat from that position and seek some controlled venues to engage a few of those she supposedly represents.

Several members have sought information on when and where these events will take place. We're posting that information here and encourage all who can to attend and make certain Senator Lincoln hears our voice.

WhenSeptember 2, 2009 at 12:00 noon
WhereArkansas Tech University

Doc Bryan Auditorium

1605 Coliseum Drive, Room 109

Russelville, AR

WhenSeptember 3, 2009 at 3:30 pm
WhereUniversity of Arkansas-Pine Bluff

Fine Arts Building

1200 North University

Pine Bluff, AR

WhenSeptember 4, 2009 at 9:00 am
WhereArkansas State University

Fowler Center

201 Olympic Drive

Jonesboro, AR

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Report: Cabot Recess Rally

From Boot Berry

Approximately 100 people who our Democratic elected officials would call right-wing extremist un-American members of an angry mob gathered today outside Congressman Marion Berry's office in Cabot, AR yesterday. The exercise of their 1st Amendment right to peaceably assemble and voice their grievances with government by these concerned citizens earns them such monikers from President Obama, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and even their own Arkansas delegation in DC.

The Good Lord blessed rallygoers with outstanding weather for the Cabot, AR Recess Rally. After several weeks of 90+ temperatures, high humidity, and rain, they had sunshine, low humidity, and a high in the mid 80's.

Speakers at the rally included Jacque Martin, Buddy Rogers, Dr. James McNair, and organizers John Allison and Belinda Whitley.

Martin organized the Heber Springs Tea Parties and serves as a coordinator for the organization, Secure Arkansas. She passionately explained to the crowd that Obama's government-run health care plan is less about providing quality care than it is about controlling the American people. Rogers and Dr. McNair are both exploring the possibility of seeking the GOP nomination for the 2010 Senate race against Democratic incumbent Blanche Lincoln.

Dr. McNair is a practicing opthamologist in Heber Springs and Rogers is currently working as a financial adviser in Rogers, AR. Rogers is an Army veteran who served 21 years as a medical officer in health care administration. For almost a quarter of that time he worked as a professor in a Baylor University-US Army master’s degree program in health care administration, teaching, advising graduate students, and conducting research. Rogers and Dr. McNair proposed alternative solutions to the Obama plan for health care reform, which proved Obama and congressional Democrats are lying through their teeth when they state Republicans have no alternatives to offer. The alternatives proposed at the rally did not include a government-run or single-payer system.

Whitley, a Registered Nurse, read several quotes from one of Obama's top health care advisers, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, which make clear the doctor's vision for our health care system will deprive the elderly and the very young of quality care, in order to preserve those "productive" citizens who contribute to the US Treasury.

Allison kicked off the rally by debunking the myth propagated by Democrats that rallies such as this are "astroturf" campaigns, implying special interest backing from lobbyists and other DC political interests. He explained that he spent his entire life in Arkansas with the exception of four years he served in the US Marine Corps. Allison told the crowd prior to taking on his current career as a high school math teacher at Vilonia High School, he and his wife owned and operated a chicken farm in north central Arkansas. He stated, "Folks, it doesn't get much more grassroots than chicken farming."

Allison and Whitley said they'd hoped for a larger crowd, but this was a start. Compared with other rallies held across the country, the turnout was pretty good on a per capita basis. Cabot, AR has a population of less than 24,000 compared to almost twice that in Salina, KS. According to one internet article, the rally in Salina also had approximately 100 in attendance. It was estimated about 2,000 showed up for rallies in Chicago which has a population of almost 2.5 million. So, for a small town like Cabot, the turn out was good and organizers consider the rally a success.

Only time will tell if Berry will listen to his constituents. Rallies held in Jonesboro and Mountain Home outside Berry's other Arkansas offices coincided with today's event in Cabot. He was invited to address the crowd in Cabot but refused.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Grassroots Arkansas Republican Network Launched

From ARRA News Service

We'd like to announce the launch of The Arkansas Republican Network. It is a network for Arkansas grassroots republicans and helps to build the Republican Party of Arkansas (RPA). While all GOP organizations, campaigns and support group members are welcome, the network was not initiated by the RPA but the Network fully supports the development of the RPA and individual republicans.

The network was established by Dr. Bill Smith* of Baxter County, Arkansas. The Arkansas Republican Network uses NING, an easy-to-use technology platform, which allows people to belong to other NING social networks with one central personal identity and track their membership and friends via a personal NING page. Others organizations using the NING platform are Team Sarah, Smart Girl Politics, Sovereignty Alliance, the 9-12 Program, Resist Net, FairTax Nation, America Coast to Coast, Team Grassfire, and 1.3 million other networks.

When asked about the reason for the creating the new Arkansas Republican Network, Smith said,
"In Little Rock, RPA Chairman Doyle Webb has put in place an excellent team to promote a consistent republican message and to build the formal structure of the RPA. The RPA is addressing issues of concern to Arkansans and is attracting candidates to run for Congress, State and local offices.

"However, the recent increase in the number of interested candidates is to a large degree also a result of the outcry by Arkansans participating in TEA Parties in our state. These citizens are irritated at the failures of their elected officials on the national level to listen to "we the people" and our grievances. Most are either republicans or potential republicans who have awakened to a desire participate and to do something. These people needed a place to network and to share concerns and ideas.

"To sustain this effort, the Arkansas Republican Network was established to give a voice and a platform to republicans using their computers. The Network allows grassroots republicans to exchange ideas and to establish support groups. The Republican Party of Arkansas relies on its state, district and county committees to carry out structured political operations. However, these same committees are formal structures and offer little opportunity for republicans to hold everyday discussions or to network / link up in efforts with like minded people.

"In 2009, the RPA has made great strides in using the Internet to expand its presence via a new website and social networking on FaceBook, Twiiter, YouTube and Flickr. However, within the traditional structure, the opportunities for interactions, discussions, the building of groups and coalitions within communities and counties are limited. The Arkansas Republican Network provides these opportunities. It gives voice and opportunity to Arkansans to link up and to support events, beliefs, causes, projects and republican candidates of their choosing. Members of the Network may create or join groups that support their County GOP, GOP support groups, caucus groups, candidates, issues, positions, and more. Individuals may post blogs, participate in discussions, share photos, videos, add existing NING friends, invite new friends, message friends and more. And, there is no cost to the members of the network.

"All who generally vote republican in Arkansas as well as non-voting teenage republicans are welcome. To help get the ball rolling, republicans generally fall into one or more of the following generic descriptions -- it is a "big tent":
- Economic Conservatives (i.e., limited government, government transparency, reduced taxes and spending, expansion of access to natural resources like oil, natural gas and coal by private individuals and companies).
- Social Conservatives (i.e., supporting traditional family and community values)
- National Defense Conservatives (i.e., supporting National Defense and the security of our borders from invasion by illegals)
- Constitutional Conservatives (i.e., supporting all of the Bill of Rights, protection of property rights, protection of families and communities, best government is the government closest to the people).
- Libertarian Conservatives (i.e., committed to Republican principles but focusing on the restriction of intrusion by government on personal choices)."

All Arkansas "republicans" with access to a computer are encouraged to join the Arkansas Republican Network. The 2010 elections are fast approaching and every Arkansas Republican voice is important and your involvement is critically needed to stop the rapid expansion of liberal socialism both in our Nation and in Arkansas.
*Dr. Bill Smith (Ozark Guru) is a retired military officer and retired professor. He is the editor of the ARRA News Service and a contributing author on America, You Asked for It!. He serves as National Political Director for Conservative Solutions and as an adviser to candidates and campaigns. He Twitters @arra and can be found on FaceBook and on 43 Ning activist sites.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Snyder Town Hall Tomorrow 8-18-09

Obama's permanent campaign organization, Organizing for America, just sent out a notice a couple of hours ago to (supposed) supporters of the President notifying them of a Vic Snyder town hall meeting at the Statehouse Convention Center, Wally Allen Ballroom, tomorrow at 12:00 noon. The email also included instructions to arrive no later than 11:30, but the page on the OFA website doesn't mention that.

Also required to attend is an RSVP by emailing or calling 501.683.5239.

This super late notice and the complicated instructions are an obvious attempt to pack this meeting with the President's supporters. These back door tactics remind us we must be ever vigilant and remain on guard, even when things begin to go our way. This administration will stop at nothing to force feed us its version of change for our country.

We need anyone and everyone who can be there and who opposes President Obama's dream of a government-run health care system to attend.

Anti-Government Run Health Care Rally in Cabot--Aug 22

*This event is not sponsored by the Lonoke County Republican Committee

from Boot Berry

Just a quick update on the upcoming Recess Rally in Cabot to protest President Obama's attempt to force a government takeover of the health care system on August 22.

The rally will be held in the parking lot next to City Hall at 110 S. 2nd St. in downtown Cabot. Detailed maps and directions will be included in a post later this week.

Curtis Coleman's campaign had to cancel. His campaign called us the other day and explained they'd double-booked him that day. But we have some good news too!

Buddy Rogers, who's also considering a run for US Senate against Blanche Lincoln, will be speaking at this event. Rogers' speech will invalidate the administration's claims that there are no alternatives to his government takeover of our health care system. He plans to offer just such alternative reforms based on his experience working in the system. Rogers spent more than 20 years in the US Army serving as a health care administrator. He's authored a paper on switching the military health care system to a market based system and served as a professor in a US Army-Baylor University master's degree program in health care administration. Subscribers to the Arkansas Democrat can also check out another of his recently published article on health care reform: Reject Public Option.

Yesterday, we visited Marion Berry's office in Cabot and extended the Representative an invitation to speak and/or take questions at the rally. You may have read that Berry has scheduled no events to hear from or address his constituents during the August recess, but we thought the polite thing to do was make certain he's invited to our event. Once he responds, we'll let you know whether or not we can expect him next Saturday.

Be sure to invite your friends and family and bring signs. Next week, we'll post an update including directions, maps, and parking instructions. Be sure to invite your friends and family so we can make Berry and our other elected officials understand how real our movement is.

We're still looking for those interested in speaking or helping out. If you're interested, or even if you're planning to attend and would like email updates, please RSVP using this form.

Sunday, August 2, 2009


Welcome to the new blog of the Lonoke County Republican Committee. You can also check out our brand new website. It's a work in progress, so please bear with us for a few days.

Whether you're a lifelong Republican, a discontented Democrat, or just interested in learning more about our party, members, and values, we'd love to have you join our organization.