Former state senator resigns from UCA amid speculation of politi - KATV - Breaking News, Weather and Razorback Sports

Former state senator resigns from UCA amid speculation of political involvement

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LITTLE ROCK (KATV) -- From raising money for political action committees, to an affiliation with troubled Faulkner County Judge Mike Maggio, some believe those factors may have been pre cursors to Gilbert Baker's resignation Wednesday from The University of Central Arkansas.

In a simple but straight forward email UCA announced that "Effective today, Gilbert Baker has resigned from his administrative position at the University of Central Arkansas."

A college spokesperson told Channel 7 Baker's resignation was done verbally and no written reason was given.

"There weren't many phone records that would suggest that he was actually at UCA very often," said Blue Hog Report blogger Matt Campbell. "He had a standing sort of travel budget in thousands (of dollars) per month going to Dallas, New York, D.C."

Campbell has covered and submitted Freedom of Information Act requests for Baker's political ties since he started at UCA in 2012.

"Sort of money wise this keeps coming out, and every time you look up there's another story in the paper or online about here's this money being spent improperly, or donated improperly, and here's a tie to Gilbert Baker," he added.

Campbell believes some of that publicity came to a head after docket-stripped Judge Mike Maggio, admitted to making inappropriate comments on a message board about court cases.

Maggio was later dismissed from his docket by the state commission.

"It seems like there's a whole lot of, if he didn't exactly get the money to Maggio, he had some role in it. With all the stuff that came out about Maggio it seemed to unfold from there," Campbell continued.

UCA's administration was on a retreat Wednesday, and was unavailable for comment on the resignation.