John Lyon with the Arkansas News Bureau offers a profile of House Minority Leader Rep. John Burris (R-Harrison).
Burris, age 26, has been front-and-center in the budget battle in this year’s fiscal session. He explains his entry into political office was instigated by a drive-thru restaurant visit by State Sen. Michael Lamoureux (R-Russellville), formerly in the House.
Why do Burris’ GOP colleagues like him? Lyon explains:
Republican House members describe Burris as laid-back and self-effacing.
“We were never forced to vote in a certain way or never threatened to vote in a certain way. He never put that pressure on us,” said Rep. David Meeks, R-Conway.
Rep. Charlie Collins, R-Fayetteville, recalled hearing Burris answer a question by saying he was too tired to think of an answer.
“That kind of honesty I think has really endeared him with a lot of us,” Collins said.
Burris said he is proud of his work as minority leader but will not seek the position again, nor does he plan to run for any other office beyond seeking re-election this year. He said he is not naturally ambitious.
“(Running for office) was really at the encouragement and support of others. I’m hoping somebody comes along and talks me into doing something else good, because I’m probably not smart enough to come up with it on my own,” he said.
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