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Christian Coalition Chooses Reed's Successor

Former congressman Randy Tate will be named the group's new executive director tomorrow

By John King/CNN


WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, June 10) -- Former Republican Rep. Randy Tate of Washington will be named Wednesday to suceed Ralph Reed as executive director of the Christian Coalition, GOP sources tell CNN.

Christian Coalition President Pat Robertson and Reed will announce the choice of Tate at a news conference at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday in the Mansfield Room of the Capitol.

Reed announced last month that he was stepping down effective Sept. 1, 1997. He has run the coalition's day-to-day affairs since its inception in 1989 when Robertson established the organization from the remnants of his unsuccessful 1988 GOP presidential campaign.

In searching for a successor to Reed, Christian Coalition leaders looked for someone who could give the organization a high policy profile on Capitol Hill and represent it on television.

Tate, 31, was the youngest of 73 GOP House freshmen when he took office in 1995. He was a state House member in 1988, when he was among Robertson's Washington state leadership team. Democrat Adam Smith beat Tate in an extremely close race in 1996.

In his one term in Congress, Tate was a close ally of House Speaker Newt Gingrich, and was a leading advocate of the balanced budget amendment and requiring two-thirds approval in both the House and Senate to raise taxes.

He is a Baptist who says his political views, including opposition to abortion, are heavily influenced by his religious beliefs.

Reed is leaving to establish his own political consulting business, based in Atlanta.

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