Jacob Kauffman

Anchor & Reporter

Jacob Kauffman is a reporter for KUAR. During the legislative session, he wrote the online column Capitol Access. He has worked with the Arkansas Legislative Digest and is currently on the board of the MacArthur Military History Museum. 

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Local & Regional News
6:37 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Report Shows Racial Disparities in Employment for Arkansans

Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families

State unemployment rates are above the national average and African-Americans are experiencing joblessness at nearly three times the rate of whites according to a report released Thursday. Six percent of white residents in Arkansas are unemployed while 16 percent of African-Americans are jobless. The current overall state unemployment rate is 8 percent.

Senior Policy Analyst Eleanor Wheeler said the effect is not limited only to the welfare of individual families.

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Local & Regional News
6:28 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Arkansas's Same Sex Marriage Ban Awaits Its Ruling

Plaintiffs Kendall Wright and Julia Wright
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

A decision on whether or not Arkansas’s 2004 ban on same-sex marriage will be re-affirmed or lifted is still being weighed after litigators presented nearly three hours of arguments Thursday. Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza said he will have a written judgment within two weeks.

Speaking afterward, Jack Wagnor, an attorney for the plaintiffs, framed the court’s future decision in the context of similar litigation nationally.

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Local & Regional News
4:52 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

ACLU of Arkansas Files Suit Against Voter ID Law

ACLU's Rita Sklar (stock photo)
Credit Nathan Vandiver / KUAR

The state’s 2013 voter ID law is being challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas and the Arkansas Public Law Center. The lawsuit argues the act presents an unconstitutional barrier to voting.

ACLU’s Executive Director Rita Sklar said the law targets populations with poor access to resources.

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Local & Regional News
6:35 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Arkansans Critical of Corporate Tax Structure Rally at Capitol

Neal Sealy with Arkansas Community Organizations
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

A loose affiliation of citizens, advocacy groups, and unions gathered at the Capitol on Tuesday, the last day to file taxes, condemning what they argue is a tax system favoring large corporations.

Justin Nickels, with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, criticized tax exemptions being granted to profitable corporations while cuts to social services are made.

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Local & Regional News
6:21 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Lottery Officials Comment on Declining Revenue, Solutions, and Scholarships

Arkansas Family Council's Jerry Cox, Department of Higher Education Director Shane Broadway
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

State legislators heard reports from lottery officials Tuesday detailing below forecast sales, possible changes, and the effect on scholarships. Lottery Director Bishop Woosley said the commission is $5.8 million below forecast.

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Local & Regional News
3:00 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Arkansas GOP Granted Inclusion in Defense of Absentee-Voter ID Rule

Pulaski County Courthouse
Credit commons.wikimedia.org

The state Republican Party is being allowed to intervene in a lawsuit defending ID rules for absentee voters. The decision came Monday morning after a ruling by Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox.

The state Board of Election Commissioners created a rule in February allowing absentee voters additional time to show ID if they failed to include a copy. The elections commission in Pulaski County has challenged the state board’s authority to craft the rule saying only the legislature can make such a provision.

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Local & Regional News
1:08 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Arkansas To Appeal Ruling On 12-Week Abortion Ban

State Sen. Jason Rapert speaking at a press conference Friday at the Arkansas Capitol.
Credit Arkansas Times

The Arkansas Attorney General’s office filed a notice of appeal Friday to uphold the state law passed last year restricting abortions after 12 weeks. The law had been blocked from going into effect by federal judge Susan Wright and last month she struck down most provisions of the act. State Senator Jason Rapert (R-Bigelow) sponsored the legislation and spoke at the Capitol with other Republican legislators Friday applauding the decision to appeal.

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Local & Regional News
4:57 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Play Ball: Arkansas Travelers Baseball Returns

General Manager Paul Allen of the Arkansas Travelers
Credit Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

After a week on the road, the Arkansas Travelers have their 106th season home opener Thursday, April 10th. It is the team’s eighth year at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock after leaving the now-demolished, historic Ray Winder Field where had they had played since 1932.

The Travelers averaged over 5,200 fants the first three years at the new park but that has dropped to just over 4,500 last season. General Manager Paul Allen said although attendance has dipped slightly as the appeal of the new ballpark fades, the stadium is still proving its worth.

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Local & Regional News
2:28 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Action on Contested Voter ID Rules for Arkansas Absentee Voters

Pulaski County Courthouse
Credit commons.wikimedia.org

Temporary emergency rules regarding absentee ballots submitted without a photo ID have been made permanent provisions. A 2013 state voter ID law allowed for in-person voters without ID to cast provisional ballots and gave them a period of time to show ID. But no similar allowance was given to absentee voters.

In February the Arkansas Board of Election Commissioners created a rule giving absentee voters the same recourse as in-person voters. Wednesday that was made permanent, which board Director Justin Clay viewed as procedural.

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Local & Regional News
6:31 pm
Tue April 8, 2014

59 Sitting Judges May Face Challenges to Eligibility to Hold and Seek Office

Arkansas Supreme Court

KUAR’s Jacob Kauffman spoke with investigative, liberal blogger Matt Campbell who runs Blue Hog Report to talk about his research identifying 59 sitting judges who failed to pay annual bar dues seeking election May 20th and what it means for their eligibility to hold and seek office. Scrutiny has been cast upon all 59 justices after a decision last month disqualified a candidate.

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