Bill Clinton Chats with Orval Faubus: 1991 – Arkansaw Traveler

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Bill Clinton Chats with Orval Faubus: 1991

Posted by drew - July 24th, 2012 Comments 0

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Bill Clinton seated with Orval Faubus, Febraury 23, 1991.

Vintage Politics: An Aging Orval Faubus Challenges Bill Clinton in 1986 Democratic Primary:

“Clinton, who was an eleven-year-old boy in nearby Hot Springs when Gov. Faubus stood his ground against the federal authorities in September 1957, had always been ashamed of that controversial and ugly episode in Arkansas history.

I hated what Faubus did,” recalled Clinton, who as a young politician had once sought the ex-governor’s advice. “We’ve paid a terrible price for that over the years.”

..Orval E. Faubus mounted a long-shot bid to unseat three-term Gov. Bill Clinton — arguably the state’s most popular governor since Faubus himself — in the state’s 1986 Democratic primary.

..Faubus, who grew up in an impoverished Ozark Mountain community, never had much money. During the Great Depression, his family trapped rabbits — they called them “Hoover hogs” — for subsistence.

It was a difficult period for everybody, including young Orval whose teacher’s salary had been cut to forty dollars a month, forcing him to hop freight trains to the Pacific Northwest where he supplemented the family’s meager income by working in Washington’s big timber during the summer months, piling brush after logging crews cut down the trees, for 47 ½ cents per hour.

..On the twentieth anniversary of the tense standoff at Central High School, for example, it was widely reported in the national media that one of the original “Little Rock Nine” was working as a $50,000-a-year assistant labor secretary in the Carter Administration, while Faubus — the longest serving governor in Arkansas history — had been forced to supplement his modest state pension by taking a job as a lowly-paid bank teller in Huntsville, a sparsely-populated mountainous community not too far from Fayetteville.

Aside:
Video: Dale Bumpers saves the life of Orval Faubus

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