Winners & Losers of 2013

    11:43 PM, Dec 31, 2013   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -We can't let the New Year begin without examining several events of the old year and putting them in their proper place. Here are the 2013 Winners and Losers.

    Winner: former State Senator Steve Harrelson.
    In 2007, he started writing a political blog about his experiences in the State
    Legislature.This past spring CBS paid him $7,800 for the title and the rights to the name.

    His title? Under the Dome, which became a big winner for CBS.

    Winner: Your Arkansas State Legislature.
    With Republicans and Democrats working together, they formed the best version of Medicaid expansion as called for by the Affordable Care Act. It is the much heralded private option which is unique to all other states in the country.

    Winner: The Broom Man
    From sweeping legislation, to a man who simply sweeps. Melvin Pickens is a big winner after selling brooms for 63 years and he was nationally recognized by CBS.

    Loser: Exxon Mobile. Nine months after the oil spill in the Northwoods
    subdivision, the cleanup and the controversy continues.

    Loser: Martha Shofner
    2013 was also a year of ill repute for former State Treasurer Martha Shofner. She was indicted on bribery charges for taking kickbacks in exchange for giving state bond business to one particular broker. Most of the kickbacks came in the form of cash stuffed in a pie box.

    Winner: Kali Hardig.
    She is the rarest of rare survivors of a brain eating amoeba she picked up in a contaminated swimming hole. But, the story also made winners out of the people of Saline County who rallied around her and she in turn rallied.

    Winner: Gus Malzahn.
    Gobs of awards coming his way.
    Gobs of money.
    Gobs of luck...
    And maybe even a national championship for the former defensive coordinator of Hughes High School.

    As good as it got for Coach Malzahn, that's how bad it got
    for Coach Bielema. In his first year a record losing streak of nine games.
    But you know what? I feel down deep, that next fall, when Arkansas travels to Aurburn and plays them in the first game of the year, we'll win that game.

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