Tuesday in the Tulsa area several races for the Oklahoma Legislature will be decided and some forces are working hard to distract your attention and hide their motives. Here is the Tulsa Today take on the contests in question for your consideration.
Conservative can range from Constitutionalists to Fascists with single issue advocates ranging between. Leftist are defined by President Obama’s crew of want-a-be Marxist Dictators to … well, the problem is that the Democrat Party has not provided a visible wing that supports the Constitution and Free Enterprise which leaves them all on the dusty long discarded fringe of history.
Leftist trial lawyers are backing extremist on the right. While these legal practitioners define their effort in populist rhetoric, the point is more clearly identifiable as one to maintain professional revenue streaming from State Courts. In addition; all public officials are susceptible to charges they are “not conservative enough” so ambition addicts dive low and hard right to gain a career.
Clear? Maybe not more than mud, but following are some specifics:
Oklahoma Senate District 25
Mike Mazzei, 46, Bixby, Incumbent
Ronda Vuillemont-Smith, 51, Broken Arrow
Mike Mazzei is one of the most effective legislators in the Oklahoma Senate. Even after a automobile accident that injured his back, he led a committee that made comprehensive reform to the state pension system which is saving taxpayers millions. Tulsa Today interviewed Senator Mazzei and that story is available by clicking here.
Ronda Vuillemont-Smith is one of the leaders of Tulsa 912, a group patterned by Glenn Beck, but locally involved in questionable policy efforts suggested by an evil fabricator of scandalous fiction, Tulsa County Assessor Ken Yazel, who is not running this election cycle. Look for more stories on the yahoo Yazel in coming weeks on Tulsa Today.
Smith and her crew are earnest, but too quick to accept offered conspiracy theories that ply their passions. Their lack of knowledge and broad-based research is clearly seen in the attacks on Mazzei for his absence when, in fact, he was contributing to debate and decisions on important issues. During his recovery (now almost complete) he didn’t attend many of the neighborhood civic and partisan club meetings, but he was working and in close communication with the capital.
Tulsa Today endorses Mike Mazzei for Oklahoma Senate District 25
Oklahoma Senate District 33
Don P. Little, 67, Broken Arrow
Nathan Dahm, 29, Broken Arrow
Tim Wright, 61, Broken Arrow
Cliff Johns, 32, Broken Arrow
Don P. Little is a nice fellow and a state committeeman for the Oklahoma Republican Party from Tulsa County. That should not be taken that he is an insider in politics. To the contrary, Tulsa County’s Republican Party is out of step (if not fighting) with most Oklahoma Republicans while local leadership encourages ambition addicts, as discussed above, to dive low and hard right.
Nathan Dahm failed to unseat Rep. John Sullivan two years ago and seems to be taking our advice this year to Jim Bridenstine – run first for a state position before a national race. Dahm draws the younger libertarian and John Birch Society zealots. He is intelligent, appears earnest and hardworking, but is self-employed so who knows.
Tim Wright and Cliff Johns have not been visible which is surprising, but if they are walking the district knocking on doors and talking to voters, they may do better than neophytes usually manage in their first races.
Summary: Both Don Little and Nathan Dahm will stir things up at the Capital. This race also has a sign war ongoing with Dahm signs sandwiching Little’s signs and in other ways blocking them from view. Sign wars are typical of angry children not adults ready to discuss issues seriously.
Tulsa Today endorses Don Little for Oklahoma Senate District 33
Oklahoma Senate District 37
Dan Newberry, 36, Tulsa, incumbent
Mark Croucher, 54, Jenks
Dan Newberry is well known, much admired and fundamentally Conservative. He has the endorsement of U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe, Governor Mary Fallin, Attorney General Scott Pruitt and others. Newberry is passionately pro-life and an active, attending member of Victory Christian Center and a former youth pastor. As Chairman of the Senate Business and Commerce Committee, Newberry led the effort to pass lawsuit reform (HB 2128) and Worker’s Comp Reform (SB 878), stop Obamacare (SJR 59) and prevent Oklahoma’s largest tax increase (SJR 52).
Mark Croucher is the worst human being I have ever had the misfortune to work with. He is living proof that life doesn’t require a functional brain or any degree of honor. He tries to bully his way into meetings. He lies about his opponent. He disrespects his own district and I guarantee anyone who may doubt – he will betray you. To read more, click “Dis-endorsement: Croucher and Gantz” and “Candidate calls western district ‘armpit of Tulsa.’”
Tulsa Today endorses Dan Newberry for Senate District 37
Oklahoma Senate District 39
Brian A. Crain, 50, Tulsa, incumbent
Kevin McDougle, 44, Tulsa
The winner of this race will face Democrat Julie Hall, attorney, in the fall.
Brian Crain is a well-respected and effective leader for Republican positions in the Senate. By all standards, he is Conservative. Crain introduced the “personhood” bill and is an authority on health and human service policy and water rights. He is a key member of the Appropriations Committee and Chairman of the Senate Human Services Committee.
Kevin McDugle is a Marine Corps veteran now operating a marketing company. Again, McDugle is diving hard and low to the right in the hope to capitalize on the current “throw the bums out” attitude. However, trial lawyers (normally Democrat allies) are backing his campaign. According to published reports; they have given $10,500 as of the last reporting period. McDougle is very personable and most agree with his general attitude towards government, but he is not studied on the specifics of State government and mostly rails about national issues. One of Oklahoma’s greatest long-term problems is the need for tort reform which the trial lawyers oppose. Thus, it is a legitimate question to inquire if McDugle has sold out to special interests by accepting such a huge sum in this race.
Tulsa Today endorses Brian Crain for Senate District 39.
Oklahoma House District 68
Glen Mulready, 51, Tulsa, Incumbent
Darren Gantz, 39, Tulsa
Glen Mulready is a former corporate insurance executive for 26 years now running his own small business. He is a Conservative and volunteers with Big Brothers Big Sisters. He is married to Sally and they have three sons. He supports traditional marriage and is pro-life. He is visible in civic and party functions often attending with his wife.
Darren Gantz is also in the insurance business and, he told me, only running because he believes Oklahoma has not been strong enough in opposing Obamacare which impacts his professional profit. He is discussed in the Tulsa Today piece, “Dis-endorsement: Croucher and Gantz.” But the most damning news comes again from published reports that the trial lawyers are supporting his campaign. Gantz is the top-money boy-toy with trial lawyers donating $12,000 as of the last reporting period.
Tulsa Today endorses Glen Mulready for House District 68
Oklahoma House District 70
Shane Saunders, 31, Tulsa
David W. Davis, 63, Tulsa
Ken Walker, 40, Tulsa
Shane Saunders is one of the best candidates Tulsa Today has interviewed in some time. In the Oklahoma Legislature, he will focus on development of small business and supporting fiscal and regulatory infrastructure that fosters entrepreneurial success in our state. Saunders said, “I started my company seven years ago, but to start today – it would be almost impossible.” Click here to read his full interview.
David W. Davis first appeared at a recent Republican meeting and made a good impression with many. Davis is an attorney and focuses on education improvements in both funding and structure. As the older guy in the race, Davis points to his age as an asset in providing experience in working with diverse people and their priorities. He also said he has some familiarity with the state Department of Human Services and the Corporation Commission. While Davis is an attorney, the trail lawyers mentioned above have not been seen supporting his race – that is a good thing.
Ken Walker seems earnest, but has not earned much success after his military service. His background is murky and aimless. He is outspoken on his faith, but we question his ability to master complex issues and some of his business associations lack credibility. Case in point; Walker fabricated endorsements in this race you can see. Below on the left is a Walker mailer photo with an endorsement below. On the right you can see that the image is a stock photo anyone can buy online. The subjects in the photos never met Ken Walker. So as an outspoken faith guy, how does Walker reconcile this issue? He avoids the press. Repeated calls to Walker have not been returned.
Tulsa Today endorses Shane Saunders for House District 70
Oklahoma House District 71
Katie Henke, 31, Tulsa
Evelyn L. Rogers, 59, Tulsa
The winner of this race will face Democrat Dan Arthrell in the fall.
Katie Henke is a teacher and suffered an outrageous miscarriage of justice during the election process when, in a special election to fill the seat, the Oklahoma Supreme Court set aside certified results of the vote because additional ballots mysteriously appeared afterward. Democrats still have some sneaky powers from convoluted positions in Oklahoma and, apparently, "certified" means nothing. As a result, Brookside was without elected representation at the end of last Legislative session where many issues were decided by one vote.
Evelyn Rogers doesn’t run for office, she just files for office. At the “Contenders @ Cains” political event she sat at her table and didn’t talk to people. It was almost sad to see her there all alone. With respect, Rogers should stop filing until she can organize a campaign.
Tulsa Today endorses Katie Henke for House District 71.