Smoking Ban Provides Drama for Huckabee

April 9, 2006 - Posted at 2:17 p.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK (AP) _ Governor Huckabee is thrilled that the

Arkansas Legislature passed his ban on public smoking. He said

yesterday he wasn't expecting such a lopsided vote in the Senate,

where the measure passed by a 30-to-4 margin.

The law, which was signed by Huckabee yesterday, bans smoking in

most workplaces. When Huckabee told legislators he was calling a

special session to address education funding, he spent most of the

phone call lobbying for his smoking proposal.

The proposed ban led to some wrangling in the House. One

representative tacked on an amendment to exempt small hotels, and

another wanted to exempt police cars. One legislator even

introduced a protest measure that would have banned the sale,

transport and manufacture of tobacco throughout the state.

Huckabee's ban ultimately passed, with an exemption for smaller

hotels and motels.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)