|United States Senator
January 3, 1997 – January 3, 2003
|Preceded by||David Pryor|
|Succeeded by||Mark Pryor|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arkansas's 3rd district
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 1997
|Preceded by||John P. Hammerschmidt|
|Succeeded by||Asa Hutchinson|
|Born||Young Timothy Hutchinson
August 11, 1949
|Residence||Fort Smith, Arkansas (1984-2003)
Alexandria, Virginia (2003-present)
|Alma mater||Bob Jones University
University of Arkansas
Hutchinson was born in Bentonville in northwestern Arkansas, the son of John Malcolm Hutchinson, Sr. (1907–91) and Coral Hutchinson (1912–98). He was reared on the family farm in nearby Gravette. He graduated with a B.A. from Bob Jones University and received an M.A. in Political Science from the University of Arkansas (1990).
He currently is a lobbyist and is a resident of Alexandria, Virginia. He is married to Randi Fredholm Hutchinson, an attorney in Washington, D.C. He was the first Republican to have been elected to the U.S. Senate in Arkansas since 1879.
Early political career
Hutchinson served in the Arkansas House of Representatives representing part of Fort Smith from 1985 to 1992. In 1992, he ran for the Republican nomination in Arkansas's 3rd congressional district after the popular 26-year incumbent John P. Hammerschmidt announced his retirement. He defeated a fellow Republican state lawmaker Richard L. Barclay of Rogers, for the Republican nomination. He faced Democrat John VanWinkle, an attorney from Fayetteville, in the general election, and won by only 7,500 votes—a margin of five percent. He owed his victory to a 10,000-vote margin in his native Benton County. It was the second-closest margin in the 3rd, one of the most Republican districts in the South, which Hammerschmidt had represented since January 1967. The only closer race was in 1974, when Bill Clinton came within 6,300 votes of ousting Hammerschmidt. Clinton narrowly carried the 3rd in his successful run for President, a presumed factor in the closeness of the 1992 congressional race.
The district reverted to form in 1994, and Hutchinson was reelected with 63 percent of the vote.
United States Senator
Hutchinson ran for the Senate seat being vacated by popular Democrat David Pryor in 1996. Initially, the leading Republican candidate was Lieutenant Governor Mike Huckabee. When Democratic Governor Jim Guy Tucker resigned after being convicted of mail fraud, however, Huckabee assumed the governorship and dropped out of the Senate race; Hutchinson entered soon after and captured the Republican nomination. He would face state Attorney General Winston Bryant in the general election. Even though native son Bill Clinton carried the state by a 17 point margin over Bob Dole in the presidential race, Hutchinson defeated Bryant 53%-47% in the Senate election, largely by running up the votes in his congressional district. He became the first Republican Senator from Arkansas since Reconstruction, and the first to be popularly elected.
His voting record was strongly conservative: he is pro-life, supports tax cuts, supports de-regulation of the economy, supports the death penalty and a Constitutional amendment banning flag burning, opposes same-sex marriage, and opposes expanding hate crimes legislation. In 1998, Hutchinson joined two other Republican Senators, Bob Smith of New Hampshire and James Inhofe of Oklahoma, in opposing President Bill Clinton's nomination of James Hormel, an openly gay man, as United States Ambassador to Luxembourg. Hormel was later confirmed as Ambassador in a recess appointment.
He served on the Armed Services Committee, Aging Committee, Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, and Veterans' Affairs Committee. He was one of 16 co-sponsors of the Iraq Resolution (S.J.RES.46).
Senator Hutchinson honored the Little Rock Nine in the award ceremony for their Congressional Medals of Honor.
Hutchinson faced Arkansas Attorney General Mark Pryor, David Pryor's son, in his 2002 re-election campaign. During his term as U.S. Senator, Hutchinson had divorced his wife of almost three decades, Donna, a former Arkansas state representative, and married an aide in 2000. Hutchinson denied any impropriety, and Pryor refused to make the matter an issue in the campaign, but the well-publicized divorce substantially hurt his popularity. Pryor was also helped by the presence of his still popular father in a campaign commercial. Hutchinson lost to Pryor by eight points, making him the only Republican incumbent to be defeated that year.Jim Keet, the 2010 Arkansas Republican gubernatorial nominee, operated Hutchinson's Little Rock office for a time prior to 2002.
Hutchinson married his second wife, Randi Fredholm Hutchinson, a former senior member of staff, in 2000. He was previously married to Donna Hutchinson for 29 years. Hutchinson has three sons with his first wife: Jeremy Hutchinson, a former state representative; Timothy Chad Hutchinson, also a former state legislator; and Joshua Luke Hutchinson.
Hutchinson's brother is current Arkansas governor Asa Hutchinson, a Republican former member of the U.S. House from Arkansas's 3rd congressional district, the former undersecretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security, and the unsuccessful Republican gubernatorial nominee in 2006, the same year that Donna Hutchinson was elected to the state House. Prior to his election to the Senate in 1996, Tim Hutchinson had also held the Third District U.S. House seat.
Tim and Asa Hutchinson are the brothers-in-law of Arkansas State Senator Kim Hendren, who married Hutchinson's sister, Marylea, in 1958. Hendren was a candidate for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in the 2010 election. On May 18, he lost the primary to current Senator John Boozman. Kim Hendren's son, Jim Hendren, was elected in 2012 to the District 2 seat from Benton County in the Arkansas State Senate.
- Ayres Jr., B. Drummond (April 15, 2002). "Senator Running on Family Values Has a Tough Race After Divorce". New York Times. Retrieved 11 September 2015.
- "Sen. Tim Hutchinson to wed former staffer". Log Cabin Democrat. Associated Press. August 13, 2000. Retrieved 11 September 2015.
- Young Timothy (Tim) Hutchinson (1949–) Encyclopedia of Arkansas. Retrieved Oct. 1, 2014.
- "Mike Huckabee". Encyclopedia of Arkansas. Retrieved 2008-07-17.
- "Presidential Elections of 1996". Adam Carr's Election Archive. Retrieved 2007-07-17.
- "S.J.RES.46". The Library of Congress. Retrieved 2008-07-17.
- Molotsky, Irvin (10 November 1999). "U.S. Honors 9 Civil Rights Heroes, and Memory of 10th". New York Times. Retrieved 14 October 2014.
- Russakoff, Dale (2002-08-03). "In Tight Arkansas Senate Race, Family Matters". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-07-17.
- "Pryor defeats Hutchinson in Arkansas". CNN. 2002-11-02. Retrieved 2008-07-17.
- "John Brummett, "Jim Keet returns ... for governor?", February 27, 2010". arkansasnews.com. Retrieved May 12, 2010.
- Hutchinson's bio at Dickstein Shapiro LLP
- "Sen. Tim Hutchinson to wed former staffer, August 13, 2000". thecabin.net. Retrieved June 30, 2012.
- Senate website archived by the Library of Congress
- Tim Hutchinson at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- Hutchinson on the issues
- Appearances on C-SPAN
|United States House of Representatives|
John P. Hammerschmidt
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Arkansas's 3rd congressional district
|United States Senate|
|U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Arkansas
Served alongside: Dale Bumpers, Blanche Lincoln
|Party political offices|
No nominee in 1990
Ed Bethune in 1984
|Republican Party nominee for United States Senator from Arkansas (Class 2)
No nominee in 2008
Tom Cotton in 2014