Two Republicans running for state office are in the middle of a firestorm caused by their own controversial statements.
Jonesboro area representative Jon Hubbard caught heat over the weekend for comments in his book that called slavery a blessing in disguise.
Today, Charlie Fuqua, who is challenging for a seat in the Batesville area made waves because he claims that lawmakers should be eligible to execute disobedient kids.
The district 72 representative race took an unexpected turn because of 30 words.
Charlie Fuqua wrote in his book, "God's Law" Republican challenger that it should be legal for a society to execute children.
He wrote, "A child who disrespects his parents must be permanently removed from society in a way that gives an example to all other children of the importance of respect for parents." We asked Fuqua to elaborate on his opinion but he declined, he told us, "I'm not going to give you any kind of statement that you can hack up and misquote, so because of my experience is all reporters lie all the time. So I'm not going to give you any statement."
The controversy surrounding Fuqua comes just days after Jonesboro area Republican Representative Jon Hubbard's book drew criticism. Hubbard argued slavery was a blessing in disguise in his book, "Letters to the Editor: Confessions of a Conservative," he wrote, "The institution of slavery that the black race has long believed to be an abomination upon its people may actually have been a blessing in disguise. The blacks who could endure those conditions...would someday be rewarded with citizenship in the greatest nation ever established on the face of the earth."
Hubbard blames the firestorm on liberal bloggers, writing in a statement that, "They've taken small portions of my book out of context to make it appear that I am a racist, which is totally and completely false."
Fuqua's opponent, Batesville area Democratic Representative James McLean and Hubbard's challenger Harold Copenhaver say voters should judge the comments themselves, "It's beyond shocking, it's beyond outrageous." Rep McLean says, "I think it should disqualify anyone from running for or serving in any type of public office."
"It makes it to where this is not a Democrat or a Republican issue." Copenhaver says, "It's about what is right and what is wrong and honestly it's wrong."
The Republican Party of Arkansas condemned the comments made by Hubbard and Fuqua and a spokeswoman says they will not contribute more money to either man's campaign, but she declined to comment on camera or say whether the party still endorses the candidates.