Claremore Daily Progress

State/Nation

June 19, 2012

Dems hope to retain 2nd district seat

OKLAHOMA CITY — Three eastern Oklahoma Democrats are battling to keep the state’s Second Congressional District in its party’s hands this year.

The seat is currently held by U.S. Rep. Dan Boren, a Muskogee Democrat who surprisingly announced last summer that he wouldn’t seek a fifth term in office and instead planned to return to work in the private sector.
“It’s kind of the last vestige of Democratic representation, as far as on a national level,” said Oklahoma Democratic Party Chairman Wallace Collins, “so we certainly want to hang on to that seat and keep it in the Democratic column, and we realize that Republicans would like nothing more to take it away from us and deny us any Democratic representation in Washington.”
The 26-county district is heavily Democratic. It stretches from the Red River border with Texas in the south to foothills of the Ozark Mountains in the northeast, including Oklahoma’s borders with Kansas, Arkansas and Missouri.
Democrats seeking the post include Earl Everett, 78, a retired schoolteacher from Fort Gibson; Wayne Herriman, 59, the owner of a Muskogee-based seed company; and Rob Wallace, 48, a former state and federal prosecutor from Fort Gibson.
The six Republicans are three-term state Rep. George Faught, 49, of Muskogee; business owner Markwayne Mullin, 34, of Westville; former Edmond state Rep. Wayne Pettigrew, 49, of McAlester; attorney and former Tishomingo Mayor Dustin Rowe, 36; Fort Gibson minister Dwayne Thompson, 54; and retired Marine Corps officer Dakota Wood, 49.
The winners of the June 26 primary election, and the Aug. 28 runoff election if no candidate captures more than 50 percent of the vote in the primary, will join independent Michael Fulks of Heavener in the Nov. 6 general election.
Boren vowed not to endorse any of the candidates seeking to replace him, and he said either party could win the seat, despite a more than 2-to-1 voter registration for Democrats.

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