Jerry is the founder and president of Family Council. He began Family Council in 1989 after a successful effort to amend the Arkansas Constitution to prevent the use of public funds for abortions. He and his wife reside in Little Rock. They have four sons.

Senate Passes Bill Generally Banning Marijuana-Smoking

March 23, 2017 | Posted in Marijuana | By

Today the Arkansas Senate voted to pass H.B. 1400.

This good bill generally prohibits marijuana-smoking in Arkansas. It prevents people from smoking marijuana anywhere that tobacco smoking is prohibited by law–such as in restaurants–as well as around young children and pregnant women; and it also prohibits anyone under the age of 21 from smoking marijuana. You can read the bill here.

Thirty-one senators voted for the bill. Only one senator voted against it. Below is a breakdown of the vote.

Voted for the Bill

Bond Caldwell E. Cheatham L. Chesterfield A. Clark Collins-Smith
J. Cooper J. Dismang L. Eads Elliott J. English Files
Flippo T. Garner J. Hendren Hester Hickey J. Hutchinson
K. Ingram Irvin B. Johnson Maloch Rapert Rice
B. Sample D. Sanders Standridge G. Stubblefield Teague D. Wallace
E. Williams

Voted Against the Bill

U. Lindsey

Did Not Vote

S. Flowers

Excused from the Senate Chamber

Bledsoe B. King

Family Council Signs Letter in Support of Judge Gorsuch

March 22, 2017 | Posted in Judicial Confirmations | By

This week, Family Council co-signed a letter to the U.S. Senate in support of Judge Neil Gorsuch, President Trump’s nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The letter reads in part,

Judge Gorsuch is widely recognized as a jurist possessed of deep intelligence and true fairmindedness. In 2006 the U.S. Senate recognized these qualities, confirming Gorsuch without dissent to his current position on the 10th Circuit. After a decade of constitutionally sound and clearly written rulings and opinions, Judge Gorsuch deserves once again the swift approval of the Senate.

The letter was produced by the pro-life group Susan B. Anthony List.

Altogether, some sixty conservative leaders representing state and national organizations co-signed the letter.

You can read the entire letter here.

Atheists Threaten to Sue Harrison School Board Over Opening Prayer

March 21, 2017 | Posted in Religious Freedom | By

The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation has threatened to sue the Harrison School Board over the board’s practice of opening its meetings with prayer.

According to The Harrison Daily, the board received a letter from the group after a school patron contacted FFRF.

The Freedom From Religion Foundation wrote that, “It is coercive, embarrassing, and intimidating for non-religious citizens to be required to make a public showing of their nonbelief (by not rising or praying) or else to display deference toward a religious sentiment in which they do not believe, but which their board members clearly do.”

Frankly, I find it a little ironic the Freedom From Religion Foundation would consider something as innocuous as opening a meeting with prayer to be “coercive” and “intimidating,” when the group clearly is trying to intimidate the school board by sending it this letter.

The Harrison School Board is a governing body holding public meetings, and the U.S. Supreme Court as well as lower federal courts have ruled repeatedly that it is constitutional for these sorts of meetings to begin with prayer.