Saturday, October 20, 2007

Running Already?

It has been less than a year since the last general election, and it is more than a year until the next one. Several local citizens interested in holding office, and maybe even serving the people, have already let it be known that they are available and ready to run.

An article in today's Northwest Arkansas Times was unable to confirm the rumor that Mayor Dan Coody might not seek reelection but speculates that Fayetteville voters will have at least two candidates interested in taking his job. According to the report, "Walt Eilers, owner of consulting firm Terrapin Consulting, and Jeff Koenig, owner of Upchurch Electric, haven’t made any secret of their intentions to run for mayor in 2008, but both are waiting for Coody to make his 'announcement.'"

Washington County Judge Jerry Hunton has announced that he is not running for reelection. State Representative Marilyn Edwards (D) has announced that she will run for the job and stressed her experience of six years in the legislature and 26 years as County Clerk. Earvel Fraley, who served three terms as a justice of the peace, has announced as a Republican candidate. He received 41% in losing a race for the Beaver Lake Water District Board last year.

Democrat Earl Hunton, a member of the Lincoln School Board, has announced that he will challenge Republican State Representative Mark Martin of Prairie Grove in a legislative district that also includes West Fork and Mountainburg.

Three candidates --Courtney Henry of Fayetteville, Bill Jones of Fayetteville, and Ronald Williams of Rogers--have announced for the area's open seat on the Arkansas Court of Appeals. That non-partisan election will be held on May 20th.

It also appears that there will be Republican primary contests for at least one Washington County Quorum Court seat and several legislative seats in Benton County. Uvalde Lindsey is the only announced candidate for the open state legislative seat in House District 88.

The campaigns should be very enlightening about the candidates' qualifications and commitments, and that will no doubt provide plenty of opportunities for commentary in the months ahead.

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