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This is a hard column to write.

The Republican challenger to Gov. Asa Hutchinson is Jan Morgan of Hot Springs, a controversial gun range owner and businesswoman and she is the crux of this message.

When you see Jan Morgan's lips moving; she must be talking. But talking about what?

Of late, her blather has been about weird, nonreality topics.

The press, doubtfully, has been giving the raven-haired firebrand some ink of late and, so, I sadly join that throng as well.

Ms. Morgan's speeches have been in some rather stoic corners -- for example, this past week she spoke to the Republican Women of Washington County -- a conservative group firmly in the GOP leadership of Northwest Arkansas.

She attracted a crowd -- not a big crowd -- but a crowd of curious and listening ears. I hope they heard not only her words but pondered the meaning of her rhetoric.

Ms. Morgan, according to the firsthand press reports of the meeting, was in an argumentative mood.

But whenever is Jan Morgan not in a mood to argue and tangle with anyone who might question her blather about "what I would do as your Governor."

This time Ms. Morgan, who is all about the argument and little substance, continued her arguments.

Ms. Morgan, who as a gun range owner and one who could economically benefit from enhanced "concealed carry" handgun training classes, avows she knows more about the newest act than the bill's sponsor -- Rep. Charlie Collins of Fayetteville.

I have to doubt that Ms. Morgan, who has never served one minute as an elected state Representative, knows more than a thimbleful of legislation. On this topic, Rep. Collins, is a railroad tanker car, more than overflowing at legislation minutia on this topic.

When Collins asked Morgan if she would have vetoed this bill, hypothetically as governor, she gave a different answer than the anticipated "yes" or "no" expected by Collins and the audience.

Morgan said the bill "... never would have happened under her leadership."

She quickly feinted and said there would be no bully-pulpit in her administration to act and vote like -- and here comes the dreaded "D" word -- Democrats, she replied back to Collins' challenge.

In the past couple of weeks, Morgan in different interviews said she favors forever property taxes -- taxes that can never be raised.

Think about that. No matter how many improvements you make to your home or land, no matter how much the surrounding properties sell for or improve -- your taxes will never go up.

So does the value of your property ever go up under Morgan's premise?

One has to wonder?

She also does not want state government to grow -- but to actually be smaller in the number of employees and divisions than ever.

But it is all fine and good to say these things to groups, but there is no substance, no finite details or even a smidgen of truth to these outlandish claims she is making.

Morgan thinks that less government will be less in taxes. But that is not a proven fact.

She has no idea that local property taxes fund more of local governments than state government.

She has no idea that restricting the number of state employees can stall the delivery of vital services to the very public whom she feels is cheering her on.

And lastly, after the spirited exchange with Rep. Charlie Collins, Morgan has no idea that a governor must work with the state Legislature.

Legislators get it; they are elected by their district's voters to work for the people of that district.

And not to kowtow to a want-to-be governor who needs a basic civics lesson to know the duties and powers of an office she is seeking.

• • •

Maylon Rice is a former journalist who worked for several northwest Arkansas publications. He can be reached via email at The opinions expressed are those of the author.

Editorial on 04/04/2018

Print Headline: Promises made by candidate, too good to be true

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