The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas on December 24, 1966 · Page 7
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December 24, 1966

The Courier News from Blytheville, Arkansas · Page 7

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Blytheville, Arkansas
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Saturday, December 24, 1966
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Page 7
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I Eight - Blyftwfflt (Ait.) Courier Km - Saturday, Decembtr M, MM Stcte May Learn From Oklahoma Politics {Editor's Note: Arkansas didn't set a precedent when it elected a Republican governor. Trie neighboring state of Oklahoma did it four years ago. Believing that Arkansas may learn some lessons from what happened in our neighbor state, Maurice Moore of the Palmer News Bureau obtained an exclusive interview with retiring Oklahoma Gov. Henry Belmon. This is his story.) By MAURICE MOORE Palmer Arkansas News Bureau OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) How does a Republican governor fare with a Democratic- controled Legislature in a predominately one-party state? Gov. Henry Bellmon of Oklahoma can give Governor-elect Winthrop Rockefeler of Arkansas some sound advice on this question. Bellmon, a wheat farmer and cattleman, is completing a four- year term as the first Republican chief executive in the history of the Sooner State, which was admitted to the Union in 1907. And he will be succeeded early next month by a fellow Republican, Dewey Bartlett. On Jan. 10, Rockefeller will become Arkansas' first Republican governor in 92 years. During and since his succesful general election campaign, he frequently has referred to the outstanding record Bellmon has made in dealing with a Democratic-controlled Legislature. Numerous constitutional and administrative reforms have been effected .during the Bellmon administration — even to permitting a legislative session every year instead of biennially and allowing a governor to suc- ced himself after serving one four-year term. What has been the secret of his success? The 45-year-old Bellmon declared in an exclusive interview tor the Palmer Newspapers: "I think we have generally made friends by standing up to the Legislature. I don't think a governor who says he is going to cooperate with the legislature should proceed to lay down and play dead. He must present the right side, and let the Legislature oppose him if it doesn't want to go along and do what has to be done. 'But, really, this matter of a governor getting along with a legislature is probably overemphasized in the minds of a lot of people. There is always going to be differences of opinion between individuals regardless whether they are in government or not—provided they are people who have strong minds and understand the problems that must be faced. 'So, I don't think you should expect total agreement on everything between any governor and a legislature. However, here is Oklahoma, the fact that the governor belongs to one political party and the legislature Is predominantly made up of members of the other party has not been a major problem.' Bellmon said some of the key accomplishments of his administration include: (1). A new school code. (2). Largest salaries increases to teacher in the history of the state and one of the largest increases in the nation last year .(an average of $700 annualy). (3). A $200 monthly minimum in salary for all state employes. (4). A retirement system for state employes. (5). A $1 an hour minimum wage. (6). Establishment of the district attorney system to replace the outmoded county attorney system. (7). Revision of turnpike laws ' BO that additional funds can be obtained for roads. (8). Bi-partisan representation on state boards and commissions. Bellmon, who is expected to oppose veteran Democratic U.S. Sen. Mike Monroney in 1968, emphasized that a governor has the responsibility of presenting to the Legislature a program and a budget, and it is up to the lawmakers to "accept them, ihange them, modify them-or if they don't like them, they can start over." This is really a very healthy arrangement," Bellmon declared. "We have not, by any means, had the problem President Johnson has had in Washington, where almost everything he does seems to be accepted without question. This has resulted in getting the country into some rather serious difficulty." * * * Bellmon was elected in November 1962, and the first legislative session under his administration was in 1963. Of the 121 members in the House then, 25 were Republicans. And of the 44 members of the Seriate, six Re- :ublicans. Then, came redistricttog of the Legislature and the Lyndon Johnson landslide of 1964. In the 1965 session, 21 of the 99 House members were Republicans, and in the Senate, seven of the 49 belonged to the party. As a result of the recent g§n- eral election, the Republicans are baok to 25 House members} and they have nine senators. A. special election will be held to 311 Governor-elect Barlett's seat. When Rockefeller goes into office, only three of the. 100 House seats will be held by Republicans. And there are no Republicans in the 35-member Senate. Bellmon, who has made numerous appearances In Arkansas during his tenure, commented, "I was very pleased, of course, to see the voters of our sister state, Arkansas, mads the initial step in establishing a two- party system." He took note of the fact that the Arkansas Requblican Party gained at the upper level by electing a governor, lieutenant governor and a congressman but did not fare to well at the county and district levels. Bellmon said he personally feels that the place to start building a two-party system Is in the governor's office because: (1). The governor has—to an extent—control of the appointments to boards and commissions. (2). The governor can speak for the party and be heard. "A lot of people say that a two-party system should start witti the legislature and not a governor," he said. "They say —don't put in a governor first because a Legislature, controlled by the other party, will eat him up—so start a two- party system by electing a jna- jority of the legislature and then start thinking about a governor. Well, that's nonsense. "The legislators don't have the statewide audience a governor has," he added. "In addition, the governor has the authority to present a program so that the people know what the Republicans stand for and what they would accomplish if given the opportunity. 1 The governor is in a great position to build the party through his appointments—and his influence can help raise funds," he raid. Bellmon said he believes one of the great contributions to ttie two-party system in Oklahoma has been the establishment of bi-partisan boards and commissions. Bellmon pointed 0ut that he has been able to keep a campaign pledge of no general ta£ increase. One of his pet projects has been a continuing series of Main Street Meetings" In counties throughout the state. Bellmon holds a degree in agriculture from Oklahoma A. and M. College (now Oklahoma State University). He served 40 months as a Marine Corps.of- ficer during World War II and he holds the Silver Star and Legion of Merit awards. He served one term in the Oklahonja House in 1946-48. Bellmon was state chairman of tfie Republican Party when he resigned to run for governor. He was elected Nov. 8, 1962 by a 77,000-vote margin over his Democratic opponent. He has said he will return to his farm near Billings, Okla. when he retires from office. Indians make up mart than SO per cent of Bolivia's population. Smog reduces yield, flavor and quality of crops, according to scientists. Highest point in Virginia is Mt. Rogers, 5,729 feet above sea level, in Grayson-Myth County. West Virginia's highest point is Spruce Knob, Pendleton County, 4,862 feet above sea level. NEW FIELD, NEW UNIFORM for Ensign Roger Stanbach, Navy's AD-America quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner, who is now a supply officer at a naval base at Da Nang, South. Vietnam. Be still finds time ta toss a football oensjnnalfc and here be shows South Vietnamese guards bow to hold the pigskin properly. Easter Island in the Pacific is ta • named because it was discovered on Easter Sunday in 1722, according to tha Encyclo- paedia Britannica. "When Winter Winds Blow Let Yourself Glow".. Call PO 3-1913 Merle Norman Cosmetic Studio 1312 W. Main Blythevillc, Ark. Let's Swap Days TUESDAY IS "LET'S SWAP DAY" AT WEST'S DEPARTMENT STORE IN PLAZA SHOPPING CENTER If Santa goofed and you have something from out of town that you can't use - bring it to West's. ff we can work it into our stock and most likely we can, we will swap it for something you can use. No jewelry or furs, please. IN PLAZA SHOPPING CENTER Open From 9 a.m. - Til 7 p.m. Tuesday OKIE CHRISTMAS TREE Is trimmed by Jane Jayroe, native Oklahoman and current Miss America, at Cypress Gardens, Fla. The giant cactus decorated for Christmas was a prickly backdrop for the Oklahoma beauty dressed fa a hoop skirt like a southern belle. Mrs. Victoria Woodhull, in 1872, was the first U.S. woman presidential candidate. Mt. Rainier, in Washington's Pierce County, has an elevation of 14,408 feet. President Chester A. Arthur dedicated the Washington MOD- umeint in 1886. Mount RainieTNational Park, Wash., was established on March 2,1899. ANNOUNCEMENT The dividend rate for the first «ix months of 1967 will be four and three- quarters percent, per annum. Money received in our office by the tenth of the month will earn from the first of the month. You now may present your passbook to have 1966 dividends posted. Withdrawals before the 29th of the December will result in loss of dividend. BLYTHEVILLE FEDERAL SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION Snow and stillness, borne and happiness symbolize the spirit of the Christmas season. With these glad thoughts in our minds, we greet our Mend* and neighbors, wishing one and all the very best of this bountiful, beautiful time. May your holiday* be merry and marvelous! Blytheville Water Co.

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