Rutledge Discusses Education in Arkansas while Sanders Attends Political Fundraiser

August 25, 2021

LITTLE ROCK, AR – Less than a year before the Republican gubernatorial primary, Attorney General Leslie Rutledge shared her vision and answered questions in an education town hall Monday night hosted by KATV that was intended to be attended by Rutledge and Sarah Sanders. Both campaigns were contacted about the forum in mid-July, over a month before the event, and given weeks worth of available dates so both candidates could attend.  However, Sanders still refused to participate and instead chose to have a $1,000 per person fundraising event just down the street. To date, Sanders has been silent on issues that impact Arkansas and she has refused to talk to local media since the launch of her campaign. 

Rutledge attended public schools throughout her education: K-12 at Southside Schools, undergraduate at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and law school at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Bowen School of Law. Rutledge is also the proud daughter of a retired elementary special education teacher.  Attorney General  Rutledge discussed the importance of education in Arkansas, arguably the most important policy issue in the state. She expressed her belief that every child deserves a first-class education regardless of a parent’s income or zip code. Arkansas currently ranks 38th in the nation for K-12 education and 2017 test scores for 8th graders showed that less than 30% were proficient in reading and math.  Rutledge discussed her plans to further expand and implement school choice, college readiness and workforce education among numerous other topics.

ADG: Rutledge vows schools focus; Sanders skips election forum

While promoting a key portion of her platform, Rutledge emphasized “education funding for our students is a top priority,” but “unfortunately, I am the only Republican candidate who bothered to show up tonight to talk about the No. 1 issue.”

Watch the education forum here:


On the same night and at the same time, Sarah Sanders instead opted to have a fundraiser, two blocks from the town hall, rather than discussing education policy or her plans for Arkansas: