James Lankford First In- Announces Run for Remainder of Coburn's Term in the US SenateTue, 21 Jan 2014 06:31:57 CST
Just three days ago, U.S. Senator Tom Coburn announced he will give up his seat at the end of the current session, two years early.
On Monday, the race to replace the Tulsa doctor began to take shape, as 5th district Congressman James Lankford threw his name in the ring.
"Today I am formally announcing my intention to seek the Republican nomination for the United States Senate for Oklahoma," Lankford told a crowd gathered today at the Oklahoma History Museum.
Others whose names had been mentioned as possible candidates announced today that they are not running -- Congressman Tom Cole, Attorney General Scott Pruitt, and Lieutenant Governor Todd Lamb all released statements to that effect.
Congressman Lankford says he first started considering a run at the Senate seat a couple of months ago, when the first reports surfaced of Sen. Coburn facing renewed health issues. He says encouragement from family and friends helped him decide to go for it, as well as, a belief that he can make a difference in a chamber where, he says, conservative voices have been marginalized.
"As a conservative and a strong proponent of the constitutional system that we have," Lankford stated, "I have not written off our nation."
But at least one conservative group -- the Senate Conservatives Fund -- has written him off, criticizing him for voting to support increases in the debt ceiling, among other things.
But Lankford brushes off such criticism, saying he has no responsibility to D.C.-based special interest groups.
"My responsibility," Lankford said, "is to be able to say to the people of Oklahoma, 'Here's who I am,' and people that know me know my passion for conservative values."
At the event on Monday, Lankford told Sam Knipp with the Oklahoma Farm Bureau that he is confident that Congressman Frank Lucas is going to get the 2014 Farm Bill done soon. He also indicated that he anticipates some movement in the US House on Immigration issues this calendar year- and he indicated that it is high time that we have fewer federal regulations that intrude on the lives of Americans- and allow state and local governments to make more of those decisions- being closer to those impacted by such actions.
Farm Director Ron Hays offers an audio overview of the announcement by the second term Congressman- you can listen to that by clicking on the LISTEN BAR below.
Other conservatives who may join him in the race include Republican Congressman Jim Bridenstine and former Governor Frank Keating. Officials with the Oklahoma Democratic Party say, on their side, former State Senator Kenneth Corn, and current Senator Connie Johnson are considering getting into the race.
(This story includes information from News9.com and from Sam Knipp of Oklahoma Farm Bureau)
WebReadyTM Powered by WireReady® NSI
Top Agricultural News