Beebe Ready to Make Recommendation to Lead State's Democrats

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Gov. Mike Beebe says he has recommended a new person to lead the state Democratic Party after the shooting death of Chairman Bill Gwatney.

Beebe declined to name his recommendation Thursday. Members of the state party's executive committee have said they would follow tradition and allow Beebe, a Democrat, to recommend a new chairman.

Party officials declined to name the person recommended Thursday, saying they were preparing to announce the decision to members.

Gwatney was shot and killed in his office at the party headquarters Aug. 13. The gunman, Timothy Dale Johnson, was shot dead by police after leading officers on a 30-mile chase.

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