Brother-in-Law of Ex-Governor Out of State Job

JANUARY 26, 2007 - Posted at 7:52 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Jim Harris, the brother-in-law of former Governor Huckabee and a longtime spokesman for the governor, was fired from a state emergency management position yesterday, two week's after his wife's brother left office.

Harris told The Associated Press that he had been working in Benton County after an ice storm hit the area earlier this month.  Harris says that when he returned to work yesterday, he learned he had been fired.

Harris' departure comes 16 days after his brother-in-law stepped down after ten-and-a-half years as governor.

A spokesman for Governor Mike Beebe said Beebe felt Harris' termination was appropriate but did not say whether the firing was because of Harris' relationship to the former governor.  Beebe, a Democrat, took office January 9.  Huckabee, a Republican, campaigned for Beebe's opponent in last year's governor's race.

Beebe spokesman Matt DeCample said the governor and Arkansas Development Finance Authority Director David Maxwell decided the position that Mr. Harris held was no longer viable, and it will not be filled.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)