Jim Bob Duggar

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Jim Bob Duggar
Duggar in 2012
Member of the Arkansas House of Representatives
from the 6th district
In office
January 11, 1999 – January 13, 2003
Preceded byLouie McJunkin
Succeeded byJodie Mahony
Personal details
James Robert Duggar

(1965-07-18) July 18, 1965 (age 58)
Springdale, Arkansas, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
(m. 1984)
Children19, including Josh, Jana, Jill, Jessa, Jinger, and Joy-Anna
OccupationRealtor, businessman, investor, television personality, author

James Robert Duggar (born July 18, 1965) is an American politician and television personality. He appeared on the reality series 19 Kids and Counting, which aired from 2008 to 2015. From 1999 to 2003, he was a Republican member of the Arkansas House of Representatives.

Early life[edit]

Duggar was born in Springdale, now the fourth largest city in Arkansas, the son of James Lee "Jimmy Lee" Duggar (1936–2009) and the former Mary Lester (1941–2019), who owned a real estate brokerage agency.[1] Duggar has an older sister, Deanna (b. 1962).[2][3] He graduated from Shiloh Christian School.[4]


Duggar is a licensed realtor and owns several commercial properties in his local area as an investor.[5][6]

Political career[edit]

From 1999 to 2003, Duggar served in the Arkansas House of Representatives for District 6, which was located in northern Washington County.[7][8][9] He first won election in 1998, defeating Kathy McFetridge with 56% of the vote.[10] He was re-elected by a wider margin in 2000.[11] Duggar was vice chair of the House Corrections and Criminal Law Subcommittee and also participated in the committees on Insurance and Commerce and Judiciary.[12]

In 2002, rather than seeking reelection to the state House, Duggar ran unsuccessfully in the Republican primary election for the United States Senate. He was defeated by the incumbent Senator Tim Hutchinson by a lopsided vote of 71,576 to 20,546.[13][14] In 2006, Duggar unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for the District 35 seat in the Arkansas State Senate.[15] He lost to his opponent, Bill Pritchard, by two hundred votes.

In 2021, Duggar announced his second candidacy for the State Senate, now running in the 7th District. The election was triggered after the incumbent Republican, Lance Eads, resigned. Duggar finished third out of four candidates in the Republican primary, with 15.3% of the vote.[16][17]

Marriage and children[edit]

Duggar in 2007

On July 21, 1984, Duggar married Michelle Annette Ruark.[18] Together, the couple has 19 children: Joshua ("Josh") (b. 1988), twins Jana and John-David (b. 1990), Jill (b. 1991), Jessa (b. 1992), Jinger (b. 1993), Joseph (b. 1995), Josiah (b. 1996), Joy-Anna (b. 1997), twins Jedidiah and Jeremiah (b. 1998), Jason (b. 2000), James (b. 2001), Justin (b. 2002), Jackson (b. 2004), Johannah (b. 2005), Jennifer (b. 2007), Jordyn (b. 2008), and Josie (b. 2009). Duggar and his wife also have had permanent guardianship of his wife's great-nephew Tyler Hutchins (b. 2008), since November 2016. The family was featured on the reality series 19 Kids and Counting from 2008 to 2015.

Duggar and his family are Independent Baptist Christians. They are members of the Institute in Basic Life Principles organization (aka IBLP and Advanced Training Institute),[19] a homeschooling program run by Christian minister Bill Gothard.[20][21][22] Duggar's oldest daughter, Jana Duggar, is a leader at the IBLP's "Journey to the Heart" youth ministry.[23]

Josh Duggar molestation report[edit]

In 2006, Jim Bob Duggar told the Arkansas State Police that his oldest son, Josh, had molested five underage girls,[24] including family members, in the early 2000s when he was 14–15 years old.[25][26][27][28][29] The alleged abuse involved touching their breast and genital regions on multiple occasions while they slept and in a few cases while they were awake.[26][30][31][32] Jim Bob Duggar had been prompted to speak to police after producers of The Oprah Winfrey Show told authorities they had received allegations against Josh Duggar.[32][33] Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar told police they had sent Josh away for several months in 2003 and that, upon his return home, Jim Bob had taken him to Arkansas State Trooper Jim Hutchens, a family acquaintance, for a "stern talk". Because of this 2003 contact with police, the three-year statute of limitations had expired by the time of the December 2006 police investigation, and Josh Duggar was not formally charged with any crime.[32][33]

The public did not learn about this until 2015, when Josh Duggar's public admission of his behavior caused TLC to cancel the reality show 19 Kids and Counting.[34] In a joint statement to People magazine following the public revelation, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar said: "Even though we would never choose to go through something so terrible, each one of our family members drew closer to God. We pray that as people watch our lives they see that we are not a perfect family. We have challenges and struggles every day."[28]

TLC rebooted the Duggar's reality show as Counting On later in 2015, focusing on the older Duggar children and their spouses and children. This show, too, was canceled in 2021 after Josh Duggar was arrested.[35] On December 9, 2021, Josh Duggar was convicted of receiving and possessing child pornography.[36]


Duggar and his wife have written two books together, both published by Howard Books. The first is titled The Duggars: 20 and Counting!, which was released on December 2, 2008. Their second is A Love That Multiplies, which was released June 7, 2011.[37]

Other political activities[edit]

In 2008, Duggar and his wife endorsed former Governor Mike Huckabee in his campaign for the Republican presidential primaries.[38] In January 2012, the Duggars endorsed Republican former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania for president.[39]

Electoral history[edit]

1998 Arkansas State House of Representatives 6th district election[10]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jim Bob Duggar 4,211 56.03%
Democratic Kathy McFetridge 3,304 43.97%
Total votes 7,515 100.0%
2000 Arkansas State House of Representatives 6th district election[11]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jim Bob Duggar 5,848 62.42%
Democratic Kathy McFetridge 3,180 33.94%
Independent Allen Kitterman 341 3.64%
Total votes 9,369 100.0%
2002 Arkansas U.S. Senate Republican primary[13]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Tim Hutchinson 71,576 77.7%
Republican Jim Bob Duggar 20,546 22.3%
Total votes 92,116 100.0%
2006 Arkansas State Senate 35th district Republican primary[40]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Bill Pritchard 1,812 52.55%
Republican Jim Bob Duggar 1,636 47.55%
Total votes 3,448 100.0%
2021 Arkansas State Senate 7th district special election Republican primary[41]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Colby Fulfer 1,388 46.66
Republican Steve Unger 943 31.7
Republican Jim Bob Duggar 456 15.33
Republican Edge Nowlin 188 6.32
Total votes 2,975 100.0

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Good Neighbor Realty, Mary Duggar" Archived August 4, 2017, at the Wayback Machine Retrieved March 17, 2015.
  2. ^ "Prayers for "Grand Pa" Jim Duggar." Archived August 30, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. Discovery Health. February 11, 2009. Retrieved August 24, 2011.
  3. ^ "Counting their blessings" Archived March 4, 2016, at the Wayback Machine. San Diego Union Tribune. January 5, 2006. Retrieved August 24, 2011.
  4. ^ "The Duggar Kids Don't Go to Traditional College, but Did Jim Bob Duggar?".
  5. ^ Rengers, Carrie (September 9, 2001). "13 Children Add Up To Asset For Challenger". Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Archived from the original on June 5, 2014. Retrieved January 1, 2017.
  6. ^ Celizic, Mike (September 21, 2007). "Meet the Duggar family – all 19 of them". New York, US: MSNBC. Archived from the original on July 18, 2011. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
  7. ^ Patrick, Galen (December 13, 2011). "Memorial Ceremony Held by Jim Bob, Michelle Duggar for Jubilee Shalom". Ontario, Canada: MJB Star. Archived from the original on January 12, 2012. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
  8. ^ Arkansas House District Map as of 2002. The yellow district at the northern part of Washington County is the sixth.
  9. ^ Considine, Bob (May 9, 2008). "Mom pregnant with 18th child". New York, USA: MSNBC. Archived from the original on February 8, 2012. Retrieved December 31, 2011.
  10. ^ a b "1998 Election Results". Arkansas Secretary of State.
  11. ^ a b "2000 Election Results" (PDF). Arkansas Secretary of State.
  12. ^ "Representative Jim Bob Duggar". Arkansas Legislature. Archived from the original on November 7, 2002.
  13. ^ a b "Certification Report: 2002 Preferential Primary Non-Partisan Judicial" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on January 7, 2015. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
  14. ^ Staff reporter (May 23, 2002). "Senator Wins in Arkansas". The New York Times. Archived from the original on December 7, 2008. Retrieved February 17, 2017.
  15. ^ Doug Thompson (March 29, 2006). "Duggar runs for Springdale state Senate seat". Arkansas News Bureau. Archived from the original on September 26, 2007.
  16. ^ "Jim Bob Duggar announces state Senate run". October 29, 2021.
  17. ^ "Arkansas District 7 State Senate special election primary unofficial results: Parks wins Democrat race, two Republicans face run-off". KNWA FOX24. December 15, 2021. Retrieved December 15, 2021.
  18. ^ "Family Scrapbook". Jim Bob & Michelle Duggar Family. Archived from the original on January 24, 2012. Retrieved January 25, 2012.
  19. ^ Duggar, Michelle & Jim Bob (2011). A love that multiplies. Nashville, Tenn.: Howard Books. pp. 228, 275, 276, 281. ISBN 978-1-4391-8381-6.
  20. ^ "Bill Gothard placed on administrative leave". World. Archived from the original on March 4, 2014. Retrieved February 28, 2014.
  21. ^ "A Time of Transition: A Statement From the Board of Directors". IBLP. June 17, 2014. Archived from the original on August 9, 2014. Retrieved August 1, 2014.
  22. ^ Hathaway, Jay. "The Duggar Homeschool Program's Terrifying Advice on Sexual Assault". Gawker. Archived from the original on May 24, 2015. Retrieved May 25, 2015.
  23. ^ "A Duggar on Her Own" Archived July 22, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. Duggar Family Blog. September 25, 2012
  24. ^ Josh Duggar sex scandal reported Archived November 13, 2018, at the Wayback Machine, intouchweekly.com; accessed May 22, 2015.
  25. ^ "Duggars reeling from Josh's sex-abuse scandal". USA Today. May 21, 2015. Archived from the original on January 21, 2018. Retrieved September 1, 2017.
  26. ^ a b Ohlheiser, Abby (May 22, 2015). "Josh Duggar apologizes amid molestation allegations, quits Family Research Council". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on September 4, 2017. Retrieved September 1, 2017.
  27. ^ Rhodan, Maya (May 21, 2015). "Josh Duggar Responds to Child Molestation Claims: 'I Acted Inexcusably'". Time. Archived from the original on May 23, 2015. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
  28. ^ a b "Josh Duggar Child Molestation Accusations: 19 Kids & Counting Star Responds". people.com. May 21, 2015. Archived from the original on July 8, 2018. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  29. ^ "Josh Duggar Involved In Underage Sex Scandal: Report". ibtimes.com. May 19, 2015. Archived from the original on April 3, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  30. ^ "Heavily redacted police report re Duggar case". Archived from the original on May 22, 2015. Retrieved May 22, 2015.
  31. ^ "Duggar Son Allegedly Admitted to Sexually Molesting Minor Girls, Including Sisters". tmz.com. Archived from the original on September 30, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  32. ^ a b c Jones, Allie. "The Web Has Known About Josh Duggar for Years. When Did TLC Find Out?". gawker.com. Archived from the original on October 19, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  33. ^ a b O'Connor, Brendan. "Josh Duggar Confirms Teen Molestation Reports". gawker.com. Archived from the original on September 9, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  34. ^ Caulfield, Philip (July 16, 2015). "TLC cancels '19 Kids and Counting' amid Duggar abuse scandal". Daily News. New York. Archived from the original on July 16, 2015. Retrieved July 16, 2015.
  35. ^ D’Zurilla, Christie (June 30, 2021). "TLC finally cancels Duggar series 'Counting On' after Josh Duggar's child-porn arrest". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 18, 2021.
  36. ^ "Josh Duggar found guilty in child sex abuse image trial". NBC News.
  37. ^ Duggar, Michelle; Duggar, Jim Bob (June 7, 2011). A Love That Multiplies: An Up-Close View of How They Make it Work. Howard Books. ISBN 978-1-4391-8381-6.
  38. ^ "'19 Kids' stars dump Santorum for Huckabee". msnbc.com. May 6, 2015. Archived from the original on March 6, 2016. Retrieved October 8, 2016.
  39. ^ O'Brien, Michael (January 2, 2012). "Santorum wins support of TLC's Duggar clan". MSNBC. NBCUniversal. Archived from the original on January 3, 2012. Retrieved January 3, 2012.
  40. ^ "Preferential Primary & Nonpart Official Results Washington County, AR". washingtoncountyar.gov. May 23, 2006. Retrieved June 9, 2022.
  41. ^ "2021 Special Primary Election for State Senate District 7". results.enr.clarityelections.com. December 27, 2021. Retrieved June 7, 2022.

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