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Bethune endorses Griffin

Second District Republican hopeful Tim Griffin says he has the endorsement of the last Republican elected to represent Central Arkansas in Congress.

The endorsement is from Ed Bethune, who was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1978 and served until 1985.

“Tim Griffin will make an outstanding congressman,” Bethune is quoted as saying in a release from Griffin’s campaign. “He is the right person to represent the common sense conservative values of the 2nd District; and, we need more veterans serving in Congress.”

Griffin, a former Karl Rove aide and interim U.S. attorney, is a major in the Army Reserve and was previously deployed to Iraq.

“I am honored to have the support and endorsement of the only person to win the Second District seat as a Republican since 1874,” Griffin said. “Congressman Bethune is well respected among conservatives in Arkansas. He is a former state party chairman, prosecutor, federal agent and a military veteran. I look forward to working with Rep. Bethune as our campaign continues to build momentum and grassroots support.”

Griffin is seeking the GOP nomination for the seat now held by U.S. Rep Vic Snyder, D-Little Rock, who recently announced he will not seek re-election. Republicans David Meeks of Conway and Scott Wallace of Little Rock also have said they will run for Snyder’s seat, along with state Sen. Joyce Elliott, D-Little Rock.

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Fatherhood a political liability?

Jason Tolbert reports that in a speech Wednesday to the Central Arkansas Young Republicans, congressional candidate Scott Wallace said sitting U.S. Sen. Vic Snyder and fellow Republican candidate Tim Griffin are “vulnerable” because of their family situations.

Snyder is the father of 10-month-old triplets. Griffin has a young daughter, and his wife is pregnant.

From Tolbert’s report:

Wallace said, “Vic needs to be at home and needs to be a dad.” He went on to say that “Griffin is even more in this boat than Vic.” Wallace said that he told Griffin in a phone conversation a couple week ago, “The worst thing you can do is be elected and be a part time dad.” He said that Griffin told him his wife was completely supportive of his candidacy but Wallace said that would change once Griffin was in Washington and not available to help with the children. Wallace held that his situation with grown children better enables him to meet the travel demands of a Congressman …

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Griffin suspends daily news roundup

Former U.S. Attorney Tim Griffin today suspended the daily news roundup on his Web site, The Griffin Room.

Griffin tells the Politics in Arkansas blog his decision to suspend his “Arkansas Morning” roundup is related to his decision, announced Monday, to seek the Republican nomination to challenge U.S. Rep Vic Snyder, D-Little Rock, next year.

“I’m focusing all my time on that (the campaign),” he said.

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Report released on U.S. attorney firings

The office of inspector general of the Department of Justice in a 358-page report released today said that the Bush administration used a “fundamentally flawed” process for firing nine U.S. attorneys in 2006.

The firings drew a storm of criticism and a series of congressional hearings about whether the removals were politically motivated. In Arkansas, U.S. Attorney H.E. “Bud” Cummins III was replaced by former White House political aide Tim Griffin.

The controversy prompted Griffin to resign a few months later.

The inspector general said the Department of Justice’s handling of the firings — former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales claimed the prosecutors were terminated for poor performance — “severely damaged” the department’s credibility.

The inspector general recommended an attorney be appointed to further investigate the firings. Attorney General Michael Mukasey made that appointment Monday.

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