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story.lead_photo.caption Alice Stewart is shown in this file photo. - Photo by Bobby Ampezzan

Viewers can expect to see more of Alice Stewart, the former KARK-TV weekend anchor, on CNN during the 2018 campaign.

The cable news giant has renewed the Republican political analyst's contract, she said.

A year and a half after she was first signed, "It's going great," she said.

She also enjoys living and working in the Washington, D.C., area.

"It's always fun to see people from Arkansas here and it's great to see of course Sarah [Huckabee Sanders] and Hogan [Gidley] in the White House. Every now and then when I'm over on the Hill, I'll stop by and say 'hi' to our congressmen so it's nice to see them," she said, adding, "Arkansas is well represented here in Washington."

Stewart, originally from Georgia, lived in Little Rock for 17 years and worked several times for Mike Huckabee, the former governor and two-time presidential candidate.

She also had her own radio talk show for a couple of years.

Stewart, Sanders and Gidley all worked on Huckabee's unsuccessful 2016 campaign, although Stewart departed before the Iowa caucus. Sanders is now President Donald Trump's press secretary; Gidley is a deputy White House press secretary.

Despite leaving Arkansas, Stewart has continued to volunteer for the Little Rock Marathon.

"I help with the media," she said. "It's always a good opportunity to go back and see my friends and work, too."

Womack vies to win budget panel gavel

WASHINGTON -- With House Budget Committee Chairman Diane Black, R-Tenn., giving up her gavel, House Republicans will need to pick her replacement.

U.S. Reps. Steve Womack, R-Ark., Rob Woodall, R-Ga., and Bill Johnson, R-Ohio, have expressed interest in the post.

The House Republican Steering Committee, which includes the party's top leadership, will meet this week with the three hopefuls, Roll Call newspaper reported last week.

The committee will make a recommendation and forward it to the full House Republican conference.

Black isn't running for re-election this year, opting instead to run for governor.

Anticipating that Black would be stepping down, Womack began lobbying for the chairmanship months ago.

"My feedback from the steering committee members has been very positive. The response from leadership has been very positive," he said in September.

5 people from state on USDA committee

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has selected five Arkansans to serve on the Farm Service Agency State Committee, he announced Thursday.

Ron Chastain of Faulkner County, Gary Churchill of Pope County, Sarah Dunklin of Desha County, Nathan Reed of Lee County and Vivien Wright of Sevier County were appointed to one-year terms, which will end next Jan. 1.

Chastain, who was U.S. Sen. John Boozman's agriculture liaison for six years, will serve as chairman.

"The committee members "serve as a liaison between USDA and the producers in each state across the nation by keeping them informed and hearing their appeals and complaints," Perdue said in a news release. "The committees are made up mostly of active farmers and ranchers, representing their peers and ensuring USDA's programs are supporting the American harvest."

Boozman, a Republican from Rogers, predicted the committee members will serve the state well.

"These men and women are among the best of an elite class of farmers and ranchers in Arkansas," he said in a news release. "I'm pleased to have helped Secretary Perdue identify these talented, high-quality individuals and congratulate them on their appointments. I am confident that they will do an exceptional job."

Planning to visit the nation's capital? Know something happening in Washington, D.C.? Please contact Frank Lockwood at (202) 662-7690 or flockwood@arkansasonline.com. Want the latest from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Washington bureau? It's available on Twitter, @LockwoodFrank.

SundayMonday on 01/07/2018

Print Headline: CNN extends tenure of Arkansan Stewart Womack vies to win budget panel gavel Arkansan Stewart staying on at CNN extends CNN tenure 5 people from state on USDA committee rdp heds

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