LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A day after the pomp and circumstance of Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders inauguration, Arkansas Democrats shared their plans for working with the governor and GOP-led legislature.
During a news conference Wednesday, party leaders responded to Sanders’ inaugural address and urged the governor to take certain steps in education immediately.
Sen. Greg Leding and Rep. Tippi McCullough congratulated Sanders on her historic inauguration but said parts of her two speeches delivered Tuesday were divisive.
“Democrats are ready to work with our Republican colleagues on these issues. But we couldn’t ignore the difference in tone between the governor’s two speeches yesterday,” McCullough said. “We’re ready to work with her—but we want to know which governor will come to the table to talk.”
Though Leding and McCullough said they were worried about the governor’s intent, they said that issues like expanded Pre-K and higher teacher pay are issues everyone can agree on.
“We’re for a safer, brighter, healthier Arkansas. Anything that fits in those categories is what we’re going to be working toward,” McCullough said.
The Democrats noted that they face an uphill battle this general session but are willing to work with Republicans in order to get things done.
“The campaigns are over. We’re here in session. It’s time to get to work,” Leding said. “So I’m hopeful we can leave behind some of that more fiery rhetoric and find ways to work together to address the everyday needs of Arkansans.”
“It’s important that we remember that both the governor and lawmakers are public servants elected to serve Arkansas. We’ve all had enough politics and games, and the campaigns are over. It’s time we get to work,” McCullough concluded.