Benton County ‘Political Bullying’ Must End, Democrat Says

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A Bentonville City Council member seeking election to the state House says she has received “dirty looks and rude comments from Republicans claiming to be Christians” after declaring she is running for a legislative seat as a Democrat.

Leah Williams, who announced her candidacy last month in House District 93 and is holding a formal campaign kickoff event on Friday (Feb. 28), said she wants the “political bullying” to end. Her race for the City Council seat was nonpartisan.

“Stop focusing on the ‘D’ and focus on me,” she said in a prepared statement emailed to 5NEWS, addressing constituents. “Since declaring my candidacy for (the state House) in Bentonville I have received numerous dirty looks and rude comments from Republicans claiming to be Christians! We are supposed to be a city of love, inclusion and progression.

“Sadly, I have seen the other side,” she writes. “I am running to be an advocate for economic growth, jobs, excellent schools and lower taxes. What is so ‘bad’ about that?  Social issues don’t keep our city moving so I’m not going to run on any of those. I now understand why there hasn’t been a Democratic candidate to run in Bentonville in over 20 years. This political bullying must stop! I won’t change my party affiliation to fit in or to be accepted. However, I will run as the candidate who wants to keep our economy moving, a candidate who will fight for excellent education and proper funding for our schools and community college, a candidate who wants to keep taxes as low as possible and a candidate who wants to see more job creation and job preservation.

“Before I announced my state candidacy, I was widely accepted as the first African-American council member,” she continues. “Now many of my constituents who I have represented don’t even speak to me. I understand politics are politics, but we really need to examine our hearts and understand Bentonville is growing, which means folks from all walks of life will reside in Northwest Arkansas, and that’s a definite plus to our economy! If that’s a negative for you, then tell Walmart and others to relinquish themselves and stop proving great opportunities for people like myself and stop being so inclusive! Political bullying in Bentonville must stop. It’s not good for our city nor is it good for our state nor is it good for our economy!”

In addition to Williams, Bill Burckart, a Republican and also a member of the Bentonville City Council, has announced he is vying for the District 93 seat held by Rep. Jim Dotson, R-Bentonville.

Dotson, serving in his first two-year legislative term, is a former member of the Bentonville City Council. He is seeking re-election to the state House.

Williams’ state House campaign kickoff event is set for Friday (Feb 28) at 6:30 p.m. at Centerton City Hall.

The primary election pitting candidates from the same party against one another is set for May 20, with the winners from each party advancing to the Nov. 4 general election.


    • Elamax

      Of course Bill, this is exactly what we all have come to expect as a typical liberal response. It’s sad that you brain-washed democrats can’t defend your failed ideology with facts but instead rely on name-calling and outlandish claims to hide behind. Pathetic.

    • arnold fudpucker

      Another erroneous statement from a demoncrat bully. How this woman can say repubs are the bullies is almost comical. Isn’t it the dems/libs that start screaming racism at the drop of the hat? Seems to me that that reaction is a form of bullying. Leave it to the dem/libs to try and use a hot button issue like bullying to twist and distort.

  • Lenny Cook

    So when did quoting a random Facebook post that may or may not be true become standard journalistic practice? Or is it just what KFSM does because it is too lazy to fact check?

  • Sarah 1

    Ms. Williams I will be supporting your candidacy with my vote. In NWA there are many Democrats but sadly some are closet Democrats. Their churches, schools, look down their noses at Democrats although I personally know church members who vote the big D.
    Not so many years ago the Benton County Judge was a Democrat and lost an election so he switched to the Republican Party and was duly elected although his policies were identical.
    Stick to the issues and good luck on your election.

  • john

    It is simple.

    People are so stupid that they think:

    Republican candidates represent hard work, God, the everyday man, and the opportunity to have a better life.

    Democratic party is only welfare, black rights, gays, everyone should have an abortion, and free stuff.

    The truth is that Democrates represent vets, worker’s rights, women’s rights, programs like social security and medicare, and public schools. Democrats do not feel that the Gov. should come into your body and tell you that you can’t have an abortion.

    Republican party is really a rich mans system. They only support laws that help the rich, so that the rich can create jobs. They hate programs like social security and medicare, but the day they turn 65 they are signing up.

    This all makes me sick. All the miss information in this country. People tell me they are republicans and their kids are on free lunches in the public schools and the mom is on disability due to a medical condition and they live in a gov apartment. Such hypocrites.

    • R71

      Yeah, Dems just want to force you to buy expensive insurance that is no longer affordable and decide how much we should get to keep out of our checks to fund wasteful gov’t.

      I just want government to do the few things our founders envisioned, things they can and should do, and leave me and my paycheck the hell alone, regardless of which party is in power.

      On a side note, if this lady can’t handle rude comments and dirty looks for being a liberal in a deeply conservative part of the state, she’s surely not ready for higher political office where thick skin is a necessity.

      I also found interesting that she’s not going to “Run” on social issues, but it’s a certainty if she’s sent to Little Rock she’ll legislate on them.

  • Elamax

    Here we go. Another democrat hypocrite using code words and KFSM pulling out the race card for the suckers to eat it all up. And to stereotype the way some of you are doing by claiming all Republicans are bigots is to neglect that fact that so are many democrats. It’s the party with a jacka$$ as its mascot who is in the business of dividing Americans and pitting them against each other. It’s called race-baiting and class warfare. They’ve been doing this for decades and are now bringing it to NWA. If you want a failed ideology represently you, then vote for this woman. Go ahead and see what happens to your beloved NWA then.

  • Wayne

    Truly amazing in the interview, she doesn’t like it when the D word is used but she has no issue using the Afro-Amercian card. No I would not support her on this basis alone. I will not support any candidate Republic, Democrat or other wise as soon as they play a race card.

    • arnold fudpucker

      Yeah, what happened to just being an American? Why this drive to set one’s self aside for what they feel is special consideration. Bull!

  • JR Gibbs

    I don’t consider myself D or R. I don’t care for very many politicians at all. They speak in political fork tongues. Use fighting words and then hide in clouds of obscure statements. Dirty looks? Really? How many? Who, where, when? What does the dirty look, look like? Rude comments spoken to you. What did they say? Who said it? When? They were Christians no less you say? How do you know that? What are your religious views? I’m of the Cherokee Blessings belief’s. We come form the earth and will return to the earth. Use caution where you tread for you may be stepping on an ancestor or future relative. Be good to mother earth. Be of a kindred spirit but protect the weak and spit evil. What are your beliefs? You are going to a advocate for economic growth, jobs, excellent schools? Are you saying we need to change our direction in some way? Do we not have economic growth and jobs. Take a tour of the new Walmart APM and look all around there. That is growth on steroids. There is major highway construction in almost every direction too. Our unemployment rate is as low as anybody’s? I’m I wrong about that? You said Bentonville will have people from all walks of life coming to live here. They are already here mama. From all around the USA and the world. NWA is a melting pot because of Walmart. I want to know about you and your qualifications? Where are you from. How old are you? Education, jobs other than “City Council”. Husband? Family? Married once, twice, never? Awards, accomplishments? A bio? I will listen to any facts you have about bulling and rude comments from Christians. I will demand Muslims, Hindu, Buddhist, Jews, atheist or any of them, better not bully you or anybody. Looking forward to your resume.

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