On Nov. 6, Arkansas will elect a governor. Republican Asa Hutchinson is the current governor of Arkansas and has been since 2015. The other candidate on the ballot is Democrat Jared Henderson, whose campaign is geared towards education, lowering healthcare costs, lowering teenage pregnancy rates, and a small business growth.
“A few of the central ideas that the campaign is running on are public education and making public-school teaching as attractive, respected, and sustainable as possible,” Henderson said. “We’ve talked about ways to equip entrepreneurs and knock down the barriers for small business creation in rural communities, breaking the cycle of childhood poverty by addressing our nation’s leading teen pregnancy rates. When it comes to healthcare, the discussion we need to be having is ‘how do we lower costs?’”
This is Henderson’s first political race. He was inspired to run for office by the 2016 election.
“A broad aspiration I have is to break some old obsolete debates and put some fresh ideas on the table that I think could unlock opportunity for people living all across the state, particularly people that are living in areas that are struggling,” Henderson said. “I’ve always believed that state government—particularly a smaller state like Arkansas—can be an opportunity to make sure more people have access to opportunity, justice, and equity.”
“About two months ago we released a plan to make teaching more attractive and sustainable. We try to build something that was doable and clear but also comprehensive. We talked to dozens, if not hundreds, of teachers over the campaign. I’ve worked with teachers for over a decade. Some of the things you’d expect are there, like raising pay and protecting benefits, but some of them are frankly simple things but things you’d only know if you talked and did research with teachers.” Henderson said.
Henderson commented on his disappointment in the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh.
“It increased my resolve to stay in this arena the rest of my life if necessary,” Henderson said. “What we’ve seen in the Supreme Court nomination and other examples in recent years is a political party that thinks if they have the power to do it, it’s okay.”
Profile staff reached out to the Hutchinson campaign and received no response.