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Sources: Arkansas congressman to head DEA

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Administration sources tell CNN that Rep. Asa Hutchinson, an Arkansas Republican, will be named head of the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Hutchinson
Rep. Asa Hutchinson, R-Arkansas, will be named director of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, sources tell CNN.  

The third-term congressman currently serves on the House Judiciary Committee. He has long been considered a friend of the DEA because he supports legislation calling for stricter anti-drug enforcement.

Hutchinson's office had no comment.

Hutchinson, 50, is the brother of Sen. Tim Hutchinson, R-Arkansas, and was a U.S. attorney in northwest Arkansas from 1982 until 1985. He is in his third term in the House.

A former chairman of the Arkansas Republican Party, Hutchinson was one of several House Judiciary members who came into the public spotlight during President Clinton's impeachment in 1998 and 1999. He played an active role in the impeachment process, serving as one of the House "managers" of the Senate impeachment trial of the president.

In the impeachment trial, Hutchinson claimed Clinton "used whatever means available to evade the truth, destroy evidence, tamper with witnesses, and any other actions required to prevent evidence coming forth in the civil rights case that would prove a truth contrary to the president's interest." The civil rights case referred to sexual harassment claims raised by Paula Jones against the then-president.

A graduate of Bob Jones University in South Carolina -- the fundamentalist college where President Bush made a controversial appearance early in the 2000 presidential campaign -- Hutchinson also has gathered attention for his support of a major overhaul of the nation's campaign finance system.

Administration officials said the formal announcement will come later this week.



RELATED STORIES:
Chat: Rep. Asa Hutchinson on the political climate (December 13, 2000)
Transcript: Rep. Asa Hutchinson's opening statement in Clinton impeachment trial (January 14, 1999)

RELATED SITES:
U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration
Rep. Asa Hutchinson, R-Arkansas

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