Reports Show Beebe-Hutchinson Battle Costliest in State's History

JANUARY 3, 2007 - Posted at 7:47 a.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - It's official: Last year's governor's race was the most expensive political race in Arkansas history.

Governor-elect Mike Beebe and Republican Asa Hutchinson spent more than nine-point-nine million dollars between them in the race for the state's top elected position.

According to a campaign finance report, Beebe, a Democrat, raised more than $6.5 million during the campaign and spent $6.47 million.

Hutchinson raised nearly $3.4 million and spent nearly $3.5 million.

Hutchinson reported a $43,000 debt for television ads.

The previous record in a single political race was in 2002, when Democrat Mark Pryor unseated incumbent Tim Hutchinson in the U-S Senate. The two candidates spent a total of $9.24 million and raised $9.6 million.