Update: Mark Darr Appears Before Ethics Commission

by Chuck Bartels, The Associated Press  on Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2013 3:53 pm  

Arkansas Lt. Gov. Mark Darr

Greenberg said he expects the commission to conclude there is probable cause to uphold the allegations. If that happens, the commission will send Darr a proposed settlement letter. The panel could fine and reprimand Darr.

Darr briskly walked to his car after the meeting and told reporters he would comment later. Darr did say he didn't plan to resign.

Campbell said that if the commission finds probable cause for the allegations, Darr should leave office.

Gov. Mike Beebe said Wednesday he was concerned about the audit's findings and the ethics allegations but withheld comment on whether Darr should resign. He said he wants to wait for the commission's ruling.

"I think it raises alarm with everybody," Beebe told The Associated Press.

Beebe compared the allegations against Darr to the violations the ethics commission said former state Sen. Paul Bookout committed. Bookout, a Democrat, resigned earlier this year after the commission said he spent thousands of dollars from his campaign on stereo equipment, clothing and other personal items.

"Only Darr did one other thing," Beebe said, "which is not just use campaign money for personal use but also use state taxpayer money. Which makes it a double whammy."

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