In 1970 when I was recruited to play basketball for the Arkansas State Indians, I began a journey that would shape my life. This charitable, hard working, and God-honoring community of NEA educated me, gave me my first real job, and introduced me to my wife and the rural communities that define the boundless character of Arkansas.
It is the people that make this country, state and my corner of NEA great. Therefore, as a public servant, I take my cue from the people, whether I meet them in coffee shops, school board meetings, on tours of area farms, businesses or development sites. I talk to pastors in churches, drive our roads with local engineers, visit with young professionals just starting careers, and sit in the bleachers with parents at sporting events to find out what is on their minds. I ask what will help move Jonesboro and NEA forward.
Overwhelmingly, I hear, stay the course with President Trump!
President Trump campaigned and promised he would “Drain the Swamp,” lower taxes, end Obamacare, eliminate stifling regulations, bring immigration under control, and protect our 2nd Amendment. I have consistently demonstrated my firm commitment to each of these promises.
My dedication to protect personal freedom, individual liberty, the rule of law, and our God-given unalienable rights is on public record with votes. Fiscal responsibility has always been a priority of mine. Raising taxes is not the solution to every problem.
I place a high priority on caring for our most vulnerable. Between 2017-2021 the state, under the Obamacare-created Arkansas Works, redirected $831 million to pay for insurance for able-bodied, working age adults. I voted against this Obamacare program and will do so again. You should demand this from your elected officials. Let’s move away from the healthcare monopolies that Obamacare established and move towards expanding “Scope of Practice” regulations for our nurses and deregulate Telehealth and Digital Health markets, so that hard-working taxpayers can get the healthcare they deserve at a reasonable price when they need it.
We need to ensure that Arkansans hold onto more of their hard-earned money. The government has a flurry of fancy titles for bank accounts waiting to be picked over by special interests: Revenue Surpluses, Rainy Day Funds, Quick Action Closing Funds, and Venture Capital programs. I bet you haven’t gotten a check from them. Neither have I.
We need to decentralize state spending. Arkansas has one of the highest-centralized spending models in the nation (Arkansas average 80%; national average 60%). Why are we sending the vast majority of our tax revenue to Little Rock for them to decide how to spend our money? On top of that, the Little Rock bureaucracy takes its cost off the top. Let’s keep our money local where it belongs.
Similarly, we don’t need to amend the Constitution to add a permanent specialty tax for highways, or for anything else for that matter. Since when can’t we fund and improve our state’s highways and infrastructure by utilizing General Revenue? Do you want a permanent tax built into the Constitution? I certainly don’t.
When moving forward, especially considering the political climate we live in today, trust is critical. I have a voting record that demonstrates I keep the promises I make. I will not move from our strong Republican platform that centers on our faith in God, sanctity of life, individual responsibility and freedoms, the right to self-defense founded in the 2nd Amendment, lower taxes and less government intervention in our daily lives. I believe in the people and will vote their voice and serve their interest.
Editor’s note: State Rep. Dan Sullivan, R-Jonesboro, is seeking the State Senate District 21 seat in the March 3 Republican primary. The opinions expressed are those of the author.