May 18th, 2010
06:10 PM ET
10 years ago

Arkansas Dems battle for votes in final hours of primary race

Lieutenant Gov. Bill Halter is hoping to defeat incumbent Sen. Blanche Lincoln Tuesday.

Lieutenant Gov. Bill Halter is hoping to defeat incumbent Sen. Blanche Lincoln Tuesday.

Little Rock, Arkansas (CNN) – The campaigns for Sen. Blanche Lincoln and Lieutenant Gov. Bill Halter are in full swing Tuesday as each candidate in the Arkansas Senate Democratic primary tries to get enough votes to break the requisite 50-percent mark to avoid a run-off.

Lincoln and Halter voted and spent much of the day trying to shore up support or win over voters.

"We had 25 hours of non-stop campaigning. And [it's] culminated [in] coming here to vote," Halter said at the Central Baptist Church – where he voted. "It's been terrific."

Lincoln, voting at the St. James United Methodist Church, expressed a similar sentiment.

"I've had a wonderful reception across the state," she said to CNN Senior Congressional Correspondent Dana Bash.

And yet, the slams that have marked much of the race were still on display with just hours to go before poll closings.

"I've said all along, from the beginning of this campaign, that if you send the same people to Washington, you're guaranteed to get the same result," Halter said. "We believe that there's improvements that can be made. There are very clear, distinct differences among the candidates."

For her part, Lincoln played up her experience.

"I think voters in Arkansas are looking for a candidate who is going to work hard and bring results. And that's exactly what I have done and what I will do," the senator told Bash. "I think I'm the best candidate for the results that they want. I've got a proven record, I've worked hard on the issue here that is jobs and the economy and that's what people want."

The candidates' supporters have been similarly engaged.

"With the help of hundreds of Arkansas volunteers, the Lincoln campaign is communicating directly with voters to get out the vote," Lincoln campaign Communications Director Katie Laning Niebaum said in a statement. "In the past few weeks, Lincoln campaign staff and volunteers have made half-a-million calls to voters, and we head into the Primary Election with a strong grassroots organization."

Halter supporters are also out in force on primary day. Labor unions are among the groups that are backing him. Their members are spending the day visiting work sites to continue to promote the candidate.

On Monday, members of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, or AFSCME, made calls to members to urge them to head to the polls and vote for Halter.

Commenting on their efforts for the month, Communications Director for Arkansas' AFL-CIO Justin Nickels said, "We expect we can hit 100,000 people" through phone calls.

Filed under: 2010 • Arkansas • Bill Halter • Blanche Lincoln
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. all of america

    Dems, all liars, can't be trusted,get rid of all of them,vote em all out before they destroy this country totally.

    May 18, 2010 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  2. gt

    lincoln will win ,,, she learn how to count votes from minnesota senator franken .. vote twice and keep on counting ,,,,,, dong gone it....

    May 18, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  3. Anonymous

    Go Lt. Gov. Halter!

    Send the Corporate-Dem packing!

    It time to get a REAL Democrat in that seat!

    May 18, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  4. Gorbashov - Long Beach, Ca.

    Go Lt. Gov. Halter!

    Send that Corporate-Dem packing!

    It's time to get a REAL Democrat in that seat!

    May 18, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  5. Cynthia - Arkansas

    Hopefully Bill Halter will clearly win tonight. It's time for a REAL Democrat to represent us. Blanche Lincoln has run the ugliest campaign I have ever seen. It is straight from the Republican handbook. It's time for her to go home.

    All of those people making comments about having to show picture ID to vote and compairing it to Arizona are stupid. It's one thing to make sure someone doesn't vote more than once, and being put in jail if the cops don't like the LOOKS of you or your drivers licence.

    May 18, 2010 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  6. Willy Brown

    Make the right call folks. You want more of a sell out vote Blanche. You want a new face then vote for Bill.

    May 18, 2010 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  7. Kaptkarl

    " What kills a skunk is the publicity it gives itself."
    -Abraham Lincoln

    May 18, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  8. valwayne

    Sen Lincoln voted for all the massive corruption. She voted for the Louisiana Purchase, she voted for the Cornhusker Kickback, She voted for the $60 billion union payoff, she voted for the Florida Gatoraide, she voted to for hundreds of billions to go to the corrupt special interests, she sided with the Arrogant Left Wing Elites against the people of Arkansas and against the majority of the American people. She needs to go!!!!

    May 18, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  9. GI Joe

    Get rid of her – she belongs alongside the road with the party of NO.

    We need people that listen to the citizens and act FOR US.


    May 18, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  10. BeverlyNC

    I hope Lincoln gets stomped. She is nothing but a healthcare industry puppet who betrayed the Democratic Party and the People in her own state who overwhemingly wanted healthcare with a public option.

    She tried to blackmail the Party and deserves to be beaten.

    May 18, 2010 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |