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Attorney General Griffin Certifies Popular Name and Ballot Title of Proposed Referendum on LEARNS Act

Griffin: ‘This ballot title … is the longest in Arkansas history … The Arkansas Supreme Court will be the sole arbiter of whether this ballot title is too lengthy and complex’

LITTLE ROCK – After certifying the popular name and ballot title for Citizens for Arkansas Public Education and Students’ (CAPES) proposed referendum on the LEARNS Act, Attorney General Tim Griffin issued the following statement:

“The legislature has authorized the Attorney General to reject a ballot title for only one reason: if it is misleading. Because this ballot title largely cuts and pastes at great length from LEARNS, I cannot conclude that it is misleading. I have therefore certified it. My certification does not mean the ballot title meets all of the requirements of legal sufficiency set out in Arkansas Supreme Court precedent, including the requirement that ballot titles not be too lengthy or complex. This ballot title, which is more than 8,000 words, is the longest in Arkansas history by a large margin. The Court has cited length and complexity as major factors in rejecting ballot titles with 550, 587, 709 and 727 words. The Arkansas Supreme Court will be the sole arbiter of whether this ballot title is too lengthy and complex if it is challenged at a later stage in the referendum process.”

To read Griffin’s opinion, click here.

About Attorney General Tim Griffin

Tim Griffin was elected attorney general of Arkansas on November 8, 2022. He was elected lieutenant governor of Arkansas on November 4, 2014, and was re-elected for his second four-year term on November 6, 2018. From 2011-2015, Griffin served as the 24th representative of Arkansas’s Second Congressional District. For the 113th Congress, he was a member of the House Committee on Ways and Means while also serving as a Deputy Whip for the Majority. In the 112th Congress, he served as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the House Committee on the Judiciary.

Griffin is a graduate of Magnolia High School, Hendrix College in Conway, and Tulane Law School in New Orleans. He attended graduate school at Oxford University. Griffin has served as an officer in the U.S. Army Reserve’s Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps for over 25 years and currently holds the rank of colonel. In 2005, Griffin was mobilized to active duty as an Army prosecutor at Fort Campbell, Kentucky and served with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault in Mosul, Iraq). He is currently serving as the Staff Judge Advocate (SJA) for the 81st Readiness Division at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. Prior to his current post, Griffin served as the Commander of the 134th Legal Operations Detachment (LOD) at Fort Bragg, North Carolina and a senior legislative advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness at the Pentagon. Griffin holds a master’s degree in strategic studies from the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania. He also served as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas and Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Director of Political Affairs for President George W. Bush. Griffin lives in Little Rock with his wife, Elizabeth, a Camden native, and their three children.