Sarah Huckabee Sanders wearing a white top.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders is a walking contrast. The Arkansas governor and political nepo baby wants to lock more people up, while keeping herself super protected.

WTF is she so afraid of?

Sanders’ administration is currently at war with the state’s Board of Corrections over its plans to go ahead with prison expansion, despite concerns over safety and staffing. Sanders wants to add 622 beds to state prisons, while the board only approved 130.

Arkansas state prisons are already overcrowded: they’re holding 16,440 inmates, with a capacity of 15,022.

And sadly, that number is only expected to increase. The Protect Arkansas Act, which went into effect January 1, lessens and sometimes eliminates parole eligibility for many felonies, likely leading to a larger inmate population.

Last month, the Board of Corrections suspended Sanders’ Corrections Secretary, Joe Profiri, over his lack of urgency in dealing with prison overcrowding. Shortly following his suspension, the board sued Arkansas over newly enacted laws that empower the secretary and take away its authority.

Board of Corrections members fired Profiri last week with a 5-2 vote. Sanders responded by naming him a senior advisor in her office.

Sounds functional!

That leads us to this week, when a member of the Board of Corrections wrote an open letter to Sanders, which is usually one of her favorite tricks. The member, Lee Watson, begged for the governor to stop politicizing the board’s work.

“Today, you attack the Board of Corrections and seek to diminish its constitutional authority under Amendment 33,” he writes. “What happens tomorrow? Will you set your sights on the boards of higher education? The Arkansas Game and Fish commission? The State Highway Commission? Nonprofits?”

Watson argues the board is “intimately aware of the pressing need to add beds,” but only wants to move forward with a safe plan.

He also reveals Sanders hasn’t met with any of the board members since being inaugurated last January.

That sounds about right. Rather than try to negotiate in good faith, Sanders opted to blast them for attention.

The anti-governor started the new year in similar fashion, writing an open letter to the Department of Defense claiming a National Guard commander resigned from his post due to the Pentagon’s policy on abortion.

When it comes to political posturing, Sanders shows no mercy. She began her stint in the governor’s mansion with an array of anti-LGBTQ+ policies, enacting her own version of “Don’t Say Gay” and banning gender-affirming care for minors (a federal judge struck down the ban in June).

Transgender teachers and students are also barred from using school bathrooms and locker rooms that align with their gender identities,

Gender-neutral terms are banned from state documents, too, because Arkansas doesn’t have any other issues, right?

The state only ranks 43rd in education, 47th in health and 47th in crime…despite owning the fifth-highest incarceration rate in the country.

Oh, and nearly 427,500 people in Arkansas who have been kicked off Medicaid since April.

In Sanders’ Arkansas, state funds are only liberally allocated when it comes to her own security. The Arkansas State Police spent around $1.4 million on executive protections for the anti-LGBTQ+ pol and her family in the second half of last year, documents show.

Sanders, you may remember, signed a law restricting the release of her travel and security records.

What a coincidence, right?!

Even when Sanders seemingly does something benevolent, it’s worth looking deeper. For example: a new state law that increases the median salary for teachers has wound up depressing wages overall.

Due to budgetary constraints, nearly a third of Arkansas school districts no longer offer pay increases for experience or additional education.

Sanders, an opponent of public schools, seems determined to drive experienced educators out.

Come to think of it, maybe Sanders needs that enhanced security after all. She has a lot of angry constituents on her hands…

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