Special Election Bodes Ill for Arkansas' 'Private Option'

by Andrew DeMillo, The Associated Press  on Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014 2:27 pm  

The loss of the seat comes as Democrats are gearing up for an election where they had hoped to rebound from recent losses. Republicans in 2012 won control of the state Legislature for the first time since Reconstruction, and are aiming to take over the state's other top seats in November.

The election also offered a glimpse of how bitterly fought this year's election may be. State Democratic Party Chairman Vince Insalaco issued a statement Tuesday night in which he declined to congratulate Cooper, saying the party couldn't "condone the negative and divisive methods he used throughout his campaign."

State Republican Party Chairman Doyle Webb on Wednesday called Insalaco's comments "unsportsmanlike" and arrogant.

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