Judge Chris Carnahan is a candidate for the Arkansas Supreme Court, Position 2
Texarkana, AR: Judge Chris Carnahan visited the Miller County Republican Committee in Texarkana Tuesday evening to present his case for election to the Arkansas Supreme Court, Position 2. He was accompanied by his father, a retired Arkansas State Trooper, and welcomed by the committee for his second visit. Judge Carnahan presented facts about his history as a lawyer, a Circuit Judge, a Special Associate Justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court, and his current position as Divisions One State District Court Judge.
Judge Carnahan has a long history of trying to assist defendants to reclaim their own lives rather than having them spend time in the Arkansas overcrowded prison system. For nonviolent offenders and traffic offenses, he often seeks community service instead of fines. Carnahan stated that if a defendant cannot pay their fine, then a court imposing a fine is simply a way to return the defendant time and time again to the same courtroom setting. By providing alternatives to fines, the community has benefited and the defendant can often avoid a second round in a courtroom over unpaid fines.
Carnahan currently presides over a Sobriety Court with a target of treating people with alcohol and addiction problems. One rumor concerning the judge which has followed him into the campaign trail is that he is more likely to sentence a misdemeanor defendant to school. Often he is faced with misdemeanors where it is apparent to the court that the defendant does not have the means to lift themselves out of the cycle of crime. Access to a GED and other educational and service-related sentencing has allowed people to find employment and leave criminal activities behind.
Carnahan has a past history of serving as an Executive Director for the Republican Party of Arkansas. He is a member of the Gun Owners of American and the National Rifle Association (NRA). He believes in the rule of law and in providing a fair and open trial for any and all defendants. Perhaps most importantly in the Judge’s life is his relationship with Christ. He expresses not only to be a follower of Christ during conversations, but he also proudly proclaims this relationship in his campaign material. When asked about the Constitution, Carnahan referred immediately to a quote he has on his flyers. He says, “I will protect the entire Constitution and promise you that I will not legislate from the bench.” Several legislators were present for the visit Tuesday evening, and Carnahan referred to them for issues of legislation and law-making. He stressed that was not the job of a judge, an attitude he promises to carry to the Arkansas Supreme Court.