Arkansas Has a Conservative Supreme Court Majority for Its First Time Ever Thanks to Gov. Huckabee Sanders

Michael Candelori /
Michael Candelori /

Arkansas was the 25th state to be admitted into the Union, all the way back in 1836. It’s hard to believe, but in the 169 years since the Republican Party was formed, the Arkansas Supreme Court has never had a conservative majority of justices—until now. Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders has made history by appointing 51-year-old Cody Hiland as the newest Justice on the Arkansas Supreme Court.

Justice Hiland has a fairly distinguished career in public service in Arkansas. After years in private law practice, he was elected to be the prosecuting attorney for the 20th Judicial District in Arkansas in 2010. He won reelection in 2014. He also served as a legislative aide and liaison to Governor Sanders’ father, former Governor Mike Huckabee.

President Donald Trump nominated Hiland to be the US Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas in 2017, and Hiland assumed that position the same year after the US Senate confirmed him. Hiland resigned from the job on December 31, 2020. He realized that the nasty and bigoted Joe Biden was going to fire him anyway after the 2020 election was stolen.

Hiland then worked on Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ successful gubernatorial campaign in 2022. That same year, the Arkansas Republican Party chose Hiland to serve as the chairman of the state party. So, Hiland definitely has some conservative bona fides.

“This is the first time the Arkansas Supreme Court will have a conservative majority, and I know it will have the same effect on our state as it has had on our country,” said Gov. Sanders. “He will be there to call balls and strikes, interpreting state law as it is written and leaving the legislating to the Legislature.”

The seven-member Arkansas Supreme Court now has a 4-3 conservative majority for the first time ever. State Supreme Court Justices in Arkansas serve 8-year terms rather than the lifetime appointments that happen in the US Supreme Court.

Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) was the person who originally recommended Hiland for the US Attorney position to President Trump. He hailed Hiland as “an outstanding selection” on Twitter.

“Cody Hiland is a good friend who is fair, impartial, and will apply the law without favor. A great day for Arkansas” noted Cotton.

Fostering conservative justices like Hiland is already having long-term positive legal effects on America, as evidenced by President Trump shifting the US Supreme Court to a conservative majority for the first time since 1931. Just this term alone, the Supreme Court has saved the lives of tens of thousands of babies, expanded Second Amendment rights in all 50 states, and took away the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to seize property from American citizens if mud puddles gather in their driveways.

Huckabee Sanders and many notable people in Arkansas are hoping that finally having a conservative-leaning state Supreme Court will pay similar long-term dividends. Hiland’s appointment comes right as the state legislature and Gov. Sanders are waging major battles in the courts of education reforms and also a new law that protects children from having their genitals mutilated by Democrat Party doctors.

Despite being the daughter of a former governor, Sarah Huckabee Sanders made a name for herself while serving as Press Secretary for President Donald Trump. She was endorsed by Trump in her run for governor, and he campaigned for her in 2022. Huckabee Sanders made history by becoming the first female governor of Arkansas. She’s just made history for the state again with the appointment of Cody Hiland to the state Supreme Court.