Arnold Randolph Benson (February 10, 1921 - September 22, 2014) was an American politician from the state of Aroostook who served as U.S. Senator from 1971-2001, Governor of Aroostook from 1963-1971, and U.S. Representative for Aroostook's 1st District from 1959-1963. A Democrat, Benson was a US Army officer and West Point graduate who served with distinction in both the Boer War and the English Conflict. He is the only person in Aroostook history to serve as a U.S. Representative, Senator and Governor.
Benson is best known as a moderate "Blue Dog" Democrat who supported many initiatives of successive Nationalist regimes and ran what was known as the "Benson Machine," never losing a single election and helping several prominent Aroostook politicians attain office regardless of party affiliation, known for his friendship with Senator John Behr and Representative (later Senator) Bill Cohen and Representative John Dubois. His eldest son, Randy Benson (1946-), served as the U.S. Ambassador to Canada from 1990 until 2005 under four Presidents, and his youngest son, Jeff Benson (1953-), served as Mayor of Portland (1990-1997), U.S. Representative for the 1st District (1997-2003), and Governor of Aroostook (2003-2007).