It seems Tim Griffin has been around a long time. And we keep endorsing him. Because he keeps running for high office in Arkansas, and winning. Apparently the people of Arkansas like Tim Griffin's work in various elected jobs as much as we do.
The current lieutenant governor is running for attorney general. It's an office he hasn't held yet.
There is something to be said about his opponent in the Republican primary, who won't answer some questions about hot-button topics. Because passing laws isn't an AG's job, but the Legislature's. Call it judicial, or judicious, restraint. And while that can be admirable in a whole host of candidates, some of us prefer to know what such a political leader as an attorney general--and a job doesn't come any more political in Arkansas--would do once elected.
Tim Griffin isn't shy about taking positions on the issues. And we doubt he'd hold back opinions on political matters once in (another) office.
"We must fix our broken criminal justice system," he told our paper, "because if our citizens have to live in constant fear of violent crime, we are not truly free. We have a serious problem with our lack of prison capacity. Our state prisons are bursting at the seams, and it is spilling over into our county jails, which are also at capacity in most instances."
And: "Our sentencing is deceptive and dangerous because many violent criminals only serve a small fraction of their sentence before they are paroled. Many who are paroled go right back out and commit more violent acts."
He pledges to wade into the politics of law enforcement: "Arkansas is currently seeing the highest levels of violent crime in the past 30 years. I will organize a legislative package to address those problems . . . ."
Ah, organizing a legislative package to address those problems. Which is something his (otherwise impressive) opponent says he won't do because it's not part of the official job description.
Official or not, a lot of people in Arkansas want to know how their AG candidates will handle political issues before they vote. Which is why we recommend a vote FOR him in the Republican primary for attorney general.