Bill Jenkins (politician)
William Lewis Jenkins (born November 29, 1936) is a politician from the state of Tennessee. He represented the state's 1st Congressional district, centered on the Tri-Cities (map), from 1997 until his successor was sworn in on January 3, 2007.
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Tennessee's 1st district
January 3, 1997 – January 3, 2007
|Preceded by||Jimmy Quillen|
|Succeeded by||David Davis|
|75th Speaker of the Tennessee House of Representatives|
January 1969 – May 1970
|Preceded by||James H. Cummings|
|Succeeded by||James R. McKinney|
|Member of the|
Tennessee House of Representatives
January 1963 – May 1970
|Preceded by||Hugh S. Moles|
|Succeeded by||Bruce Hurley|
|Born||November 29, 1936|
|Alma mater||Tennessee Tech University|
University of Tennessee
Background and educationEdit
Jenkins was born in Detroit, Michigan, to parents from Rogersville, Tennessee. He is a seventh-generation Tennessean. He served in the United States Army from 1959 to 1960, and graduated from Tennessee Technological University and the University of Tennessee College of Law.
Jenkins was elected to the Tennessee General Assembly as a Republican in 1962 and he served as Speaker of the House from 1969 to 1971—the first Republican to hold that position since a few years after Reconstruction, and the last one until Kent Williams in 2009. He unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for Governor of Tennessee in 1970, was a Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Conservation, serving in the Cabinet of Winfield Dunn, and according to his website biography, he was a senior policy advisor on energy and legislative issues for Governor Lamar Alexander.
Jenkins was the only Republican to serve as Speaker of the Tennessee House in the 20th century. He was also one of the youngest persons to ever hold the office.
Running for CongressEdit
The 12-way primary election was watched very closely in Tennessee Republican circles, as the district is so heavily Republican that whoever won the primary was all but assured of being the district's next congressman. The First District has been in Republican hands for all but four years since 1859.
Although Jenkins did not secure Quillen's endorsement for the primary, he narrowly won with 18% of the vote and breezed to election in November.
Reelection and legislationEdit
He was reelected four times without serious opposition, and ran unopposed in 2000 and 2002. He won a fifth term in 2004 with 74% of the vote.
Jenkins kept a relatively low profile in Congress in contrast to Quillen and B. Carroll Reece, who between them represented the 1st District for all but seven of the 76 years before Jenkins won the seat. His voting record was reliably conservative.
Best bass fisherman in CongressEdit
As seen on ESPN: "After the final cast was made, however, bragging rights for the title of "best bass fishermen in Congress" went to U.S. Representative Bill Jenkins (R-TN), who teamed up with BASS Elite Series pro Dave Wolak and Toyota's Charlie Ing to finish with five bass weighing 18 pounds, 9 ounces.
Fittingly, the 70-year-old legislator from Tennessee also posted the largest fish of the event, a 4 ½-pound largemouth that he caught in Mattawoman Creek, a tributary of the Potomac River in Maryland."
On February 15, 2006, Jenkins announced that he would not run for a sixth term. He said that he wanted to spend more time with his family since he turned 70 that November.
|1996||Kay C. Smith||58,657||32%||William L. Jenkins||117,676||65%||Dave Davis||1,947||1%||James B. Taylor||1,089||1%||*|
|1998||Kay C. White||30,710||31%||William L. Jenkins||68,904||69%||*|
|2000||(no candidate)||William L. Jenkins||157,828||100%||*|
|2002||(no candidate)||William L. Jenkins||127,300||99%||Write-ins||1,586||1%|
|2004||Graham Leonard||56,361||24%||William L. Jenkins||172,543||74%||Ralph J. Ball||3,061||1%||Michael Peavler||1,595||1%|
- Tennessee State Library and Archives — GOVERNOR BRYANT WINFIELD CULBERSON DUNN PAPERS
- Representative Jenkins' website biography Archived June 11, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
- "Election Statistics". Office of the Clerk of the House of Representatives. Archived from the original on 26 December 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-10.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bill Jenkins (politician).|
- United States Congress. "William Lewis Jenkins (id: J000082)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Tennessee's 1st congressional district