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December 10, 2012

Congressman-elect Mullin has $327,000 campaign debt

OKLAHOMA CITY — Newly elected Oklahoma Congressman Markwayne Mullin owes about $327,000 in campaign debt, according to a campaign finance report.

Mullin, a Republican, spent nearly $1.6 million in his successful campaign for the seat being vacated by Democrat Dan Boren and had $33,509 in the bank on Nov. 26, according to a report filed Thursday with the Federal Election Commission. Mullin defeated Democrat Rob Wallace and Independent Michael Fulks in the November general election.
“Our fundraising efforts are ongoing, and we continue to reach out to donors as we close down the 2012 campaign,” Mullin campaign manager Tim Ross told The Oklahoman.
Wallace, of Fort Gibson, spent nearly $1.2 million on his race and ended with less than $7,000 in the bank. He reported no debts.
Mullin, a plumbing company owner, loaned his campaign $255,750, and he repaid himself $22,000 from campaign funds on Nov. 24, less than three weeks after the election, after making an earlier payment of $5,750 toward the personal loans.
It is legal — and not unusual — for candidates to repay personal campaign loans with money raised from donors.
Republican Jim Bridenstine, who ousted incumbent Republican Rep. John Sullivan and then defeated Democrat John Olson to claim the 1st District congressional seat, spent nearly $717,000 on his campaign, according to the FEC report. Bridenstine’s report shows that he ended the period with $38,927 in his campaign account.
Rep. James Lankford, R-Oklahoma City, spent $802,000 on his first re-election campaign and had $440,000 in his campaign account after defeating Democrat Tom Guild of Edmond. Guild spent $151,000 on his campaign, which ended up with a zero balance and $100,099 in debt to Guild for personal loans.
Rep. Tom Cole, R-Moore, spent nearly $754,000 in the two-year election cycle, and had more than $812,000 in his account at the end of last month, according to the election commission.
Rep. Frank Lucas, R-Cheyenne, spent more than $1.6 million for his race against Democrat Timothy Murray, who spent $198, according to their reports. More than $1 million of Lucas’ donations came from political action committees, and a large portion of the money he spent went to other Republican candidates.

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