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Politics

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Senate Finance Committee chairman is rejecting as "categorically false" a report that Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee was responsible for a provision in the final tax bill that could help him financially.

In a letter Monday, GOP Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah said he was unaware of either Corker or his staff contacting negotiators of the final bill.

Hatch said the provision regarding a tax benefit for real estate had been unveiled by a House chairman Nov. 2 and included in the House version of the tax bill.

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee songwriter Lee Thomas Miller is dropping out of the race for the Republican nomination to succeed Rep. Marsha Blackburn in Congress.

Miller announced Monday he was ending his 7th District campaign about a month after launching it because running for office was causing him to "compromise" himself.

Miller is a three-time Grammy nominee who has written songs for Trace Adkins, Brad Paisley, George Strait, Jamey Johnson and Chris Stapleton.

Talk Business and Politics

There’s a lot of new talent running for office in Arkansas these days.  Among those is a teacher from Helena-West Helena running as a Democrat for the first U.S. Congressional District.  His name is Chintan Desai.  He wants to take on GOP incumbent Congressman Rick Crawford next November, although he may have to defeat primary challenger Richard Butler first.  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics sits down with Desai for a conversation.


Talk Business and Politics

The Alabama U.S. Senate Special Election has been the buzz of the nation this week.  Did the upset win of Doug Jones over Roy Moore change the dynamics for next year’s races?  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics sits down with Republican strategist Richard Bearden and Democratic strategist Jessica DeLoach Sabin to talk about how the election impacts the political climate in Arkansas.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A new poll says Tennesseans are more moderate than their neighbors think they are.

In the Vanderbilt University poll Thursday, more than six of 10 people surveyed believed fellow state residents are conservative or very conservative.

Only about half of those respondents described themselves that way, a 14 percentage-point gap between perception and reality. About three in 10 considered themselves moderate. Almost 2 in 10 identified as liberal.

Talk Business and Politics

On Tuesday, Arkansas Democrats received an early Christmas present.  Jared Henderson, 39, announced he would run for the Governor seat to challenge incumbent Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson.  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics sits down with Henderson for a one-on-one to discuss his platform.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Democrat James Mackler says he's dropping out of the U.S. Senate race in Tennessee to replace Sen. Bob Corker, a move that appears to clear the path to the Democratic nomination for former Gov. Phil Bredesen.

Mackler said in a news release he's "stepping back" from the race, but will stay active with a political action committee named Believe in Service. The Nashville attorney and Iraq War veteran says the committee will support federal candidates who will protect and expand national service programs.

A Democrat has announced intent to run for the governor’s office in 2018. Jared Henderson was the executive director of Teach for America’s Arkansas division from 2013 to 2017 and is centering his campaign in part on “making teachers one of the most important professions in the state.” The 39-year old Arkansas native declared Tuesday he’s seeking his party’s nomination.

Outside of the gates of the Arkansas Governor's mansion in Little Rock.
Wikipedia

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - The former head of an education nonprofit says he's running against Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson in Arkansas next year, marking the first Democrat to announce a bid for the solidly red state's top office.

Jared Henderson is the former executive director of the Arkansas branch of Teach for America. He said Tuesday that he'll seek the party's nomination to challenge the first-term governor.

chintan@desaiforcongress.com

In this interview, KASU's News Director Johnathan Reaves speaks with Chintan Desai.  He is a Democratic challenger to U.S. Representative Republican Rick Crawford in the 2018 mid-term election.  Listen to the entire interview by clicking on the Listen button.  

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens says he wants his five new appointees to the state veterans commission to fire the leader of the embattled St. Louis Veterans Home.

Greitens during his Monday announcement said he's calling for changes in leadership after an independent investigation found substandard care at the home.

Some patients, families and staff have complained for months about care at the home. But prior reviews didn't turn up any wrongdoing.

Wikipedia

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Rappelling into a bull-riding rodeo event, crawling through dirt in a SWAT obstacle course and entering a burning building with firefighters.

These could be action movie stunts by Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Hollywood star turned California governor.

But they were all done by another governor earning a reputation for public displays of physical prowess — Eric Greitens of Missouri.

Talk Business and Politics

Could we see a special election to replace Sen. Tom Cotton should he jump to a rumored CIA post?  Plus, tax cuts passed the Senate, but are they a political winner or loser?  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics discusses those topics and more with John Brummett, a columnist with the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens and his senior staff are using a secretive app that erases messages after they're read.

The Kansas City Star reports that use of the Confide app by the governor and some of his top advisers is raising concerns that it could be used to undermine open records laws. But it's unclear whether the governor and his staff are using the app for state business, personal use or campaign work.

Talk Business and Politics

Health care is the big topic as open enrollment is underway across the nation for health insurance.  People without insurance from their employer can get enrolled in the marketplace.  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics sits down with Arkansas’ director of the marketplace Angela Lowther to learn more.


WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on Sen. Al Franken and sexual misconduct allegations (all times local):

11:44 a.m.

Female senators are calling on fellow Democratic Sen. Al Franken to resign.

In Facebook posts and Tweets, the women said the two-term senator should step aside after a fresh allegation that he forcibly tried to kiss a woman in 2006.

BENTON, Ark. (AP) - A former Saline County prosecuting attorney will become a Saline County Circuit Court judge.

The Saline Courier reports that Gov. Asa Hutchinson has chosen Barbara Womack Webb to succeed current Judge Bobby McCallister.

McCallister has been suspended and announced he will resign Dec. 15 as he faces charges of failing to pay or file taxes.

pixabay

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas children and pregnant women who are covered by a federal health insurance program will continue to be covered until the end of March. But the plan's future after that is uncertain.

Talk Business and Politics

There was rampant speculation late last week that Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) may be tabbed to join the Trump Administration as the new director of the CIA.  The news follows speculation that President Trump would be removing Rex Tillerson from the Secretary of State position—news that has been denied by the White House.  Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics sits down with Republican John Burris and Democrat Jessica DeLoach Sabin and discusses how Cotton's new job could impact Arkansas' political landscape if he takes the job.


The New York Times reports today on a White House plan to replace U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo. It's reported that President Trump wants Arkansas U.S. Senator Tom Cotton to replace Pompeo as head of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Tennessee State Capitol
Wikipedia

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Congresswoman Diane Black wants Tennessee's General Assembly and Congress to disclose sexual harassment claims and settlements involving lawmakers and staffers.

Black told The Tennessean Thursday that victims should be released from non-disclosure agreements and Congress and the Assembly should identify perpetrators, but shield victim identities.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on President Donald Trump's national security team (all times local):

12:20 p.m.

The White House says Rex Tillerson continues to lead the State Department.

That's after reports that White House officials are discussing a plan to replace Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo in what would be a major shake-up of the president's national security team.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders says there are "no personnel announcements at this time."

Talk Business and Politics

Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics has the details on a potential Democratic challenger for Arkansas governor in 2018.  Plus, a speaker at the University Of Arkansas Clinton School Of Public Service discusses how America has been preparing for a nuclear disaster.  


Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson on Wednesday appointed two Paragould residents to the Greene County Quorum Court as Justices of the Peace.

Aaron Camp will replace Barry Bateman as the representative for District 2.  Shawntae Thompson will be replaced by Russell “Rusty” McAllister as the District 7 representative.

Jay Martin
Talk Business and Politics

Former State Rep. Jay Martin is considering a run for Arkansas governor on the Democratic ticket.

Martin confirmed to Talk Business & Politics that he is “certainly headed in that direction.”

“I feel a sense of calling and duty,” Martin said in a phone interview on Tuesday, Nov. 28. He said he is working with a team to make an announcement, but no timeline has been set.

ST. CHARLES, Mo. (AP) - President Donald Trump is returning to Missouri for the second time in three months.

The White House says Trump will speak Wednesday in St. Charles.

The speech comes as Trump and other Republican leaders seek to pass tax overhaul legislation by the end of the year. The House recently passed a $1.5 trillion bill and Senate GOP leaders hope to push their bill through this week. The package blends a sharp reduction in top corporate and business tax rates with more modest relief for individuals.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas Secretary of State Mark Martin has formed a nonprofit he says will strive to educate people about foreign affairs.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that Martin filed incorporation paperwork this month to create the Arkansas Foreign Affairs Roundtable.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Four of the seven major candidates for Tennessee governor are declining to release details of their federal income tax returns.

Talk Business and Politics

Roby Brock with Talk Business and Politics on this episode talks about sexual misconduct in the national headlines and how the national discussion impacts Arkansans.  Brock is speaking with Weekend Anchor Janelle Lilley of KATV in Little Rock and Tamika Edwards of Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families.


Pixabay

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has appointed a new member to the Missouri State Board of Education less than an hour before it's expected to discuss whether to fire the state's top education official.

Greitens on Tuesday appointed Jennifer Edwards, the president and co-founder of advocacy group Decoding Dyslexia Missouri. She's from Springfield.

The appointment was announced shortly before board members were set to meet in Jefferson City. They're expected to discuss whether to fire the state's top education official, Commissioner Margie Vandeven.

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