Senate race shaping up in Delta | Arkansas Blog

Monday, August 22, 2011

Senate race shaping up in Delta

Posted By on Mon, Aug 22, 2011 at 11:16 AM

A well-funded two-party fight is shaping up for a race for Senate in District 26, now held by term-limited Sen. Jimmy Jeffress.

Mike Akin, a Monticello furniture manufacturer, has started a Facebook page announcing his plans to run for the seat as a Republican. He's a Huckabee appointee to the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees. Appropriate, given the financial self-dealing for which he's become known. As we reported recently, Akin got approval to do some for-profit work at the UA-Monticello, one of the campuses he oversees. When he was a member of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, he accepted state money from the department he oversaw to take over a Dumas furniture plant and fold it into an ongoing operation, not exactly new business development. He also promptly cut the Dumas workers' pay.

Campaign fodder, I'd guess. Better is Akin's first endorsement on Facebook, from none other than Curtis Coleman, who, as a U.S. Senate candidate, said you'd be well advised to get a visa and vaccinations to visit the Delta.

Democrats interested in the seat include state Rep. Eddie Cheatham of Crossett and former state Rep. Gregg Reep of Warren.

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