Oklahoma House member Daniel Pae won the Republican nomination in Tuesday’s general election, besting challenger Robert Johns Jr.
Pae, of Lawton, carried all nine of the precincts in House District 62, which is centered on his home town. In the final tally, Pae won 1,104 votes or 74.39 percent of the votes cast, to 380 votes (25.61 percent) cast for Johns.
The results mean that Pae will proceed to the November general election, where he will face a challenge from Democratic opponent Larry Bush, a Lawton businessman. Pae is seeking his second consecutive term as the District 62 representative.
“I’m very humbled and honored by the clear mandate of the election results tonight,” Pae said. “Now, it’s on to November.”
Pae said he adapted a different campaigning style as he and others adjusted to the COVID-19 pandemic, and he expects to continue using that technique in coming months: calling people directly to provide contact information or, in recent weeks, walking neighborhoods and leaving door hangars on people’s doors, in acknowledgement of those who are quarantining.
Pae said he also intends to keep focused on the same message he has used throughout his campaign.
“At the end of the day, Lawtonians want us in the Legislature to work together and set aside short-term politics and govern through long-term solutions,” he said. “That’s what I campaigned on in this primary election and will campaign on in the general election.”
Johns said in a statement that he was disappointed by the results and in the voter turnout:
“I knew going into this that it was going to be an uphill battle. It wasn’t until I saw Pae’s ethics report that he had donors with deep pockets from Oklahoma City and Tulsa, and even the Lawton Fire Department, who gave him $5,000. Unseating an incumbent is hard enough, but it’s harder to do when they have donors who are vested in keeping their political property in office. Pae could not defend his record, and still claims he’s being bullied by his critics. This is not the kind of representation Lawton needs. Elected politicians like Pae are what will keep holding Lawton back. Inexperience, immaturity, and only helping the community when there’s a camera around are not the virtues of a public servant.
“As for voter turnout, I am truly disappointed but not surprised. I see many people like myself who are angry at city ‘leadership,’ and I use that term loosely, as well as their representatives like Pae, who they swear up and down they’ll vote out of office. But come election day, those same politicians count on low voter turnout to keep their power. Pae had somewhere around 1,500 votes, and it’s a safe bet that they were donors and friends, and fellow politicians vested in his office. He did not earn this, he bought it.
“I will not be supporting his reelection in November. I didn’t vote for him the first time, and that’s not going to change. I urge anyone else who is fed up with the good ol’ boy political system to do the same.”
In Stephens County, Sheriff Wayne McKinney beat challenger Cris Lang to win another term in office. The final vote was 4,092 for McKinney (64.4 percent) to 2,262 (35.6 percent) for Lang. In the race for Duncan City Council Ward 2, Incumbent Todd Churchman won 1,375 votes (58.59 percent) to best Johnny Wilkinson, who won 972 votes (41.41 percent). Churchman will face independent Lonnie Estes, Duncan, in November.
In the race for Marlow Board of Education Office 5, incumbent Terry Turner won 906 votes (57.11 percent), compared to 677 (42.89 percent) for Shawn Bateman.
In Cotton County, incumbent Tim King bested challenger Bobby Sparks to win an elected term as Cotton County sheriff. The vote was 699 (82.72 percent) for King and 146 (17.28 percent) for Sparks.
In Jackson County, incumbent Roger Clark LeVick beat challenger Glenn Cooker to keep his seat. The tally in the Republican race was 2,360 votes (87.08 percent) for LeVick, compared to 350 (12.92 percent) for Coker.
In Kiowa County, Comanche County District 2 Commissioner Stan Funkhouser edged out challenger Brent Straub in the Republican race. Funkhouser won 196 votes (50.26 percent) to Straub’s 194 (49.74 percent). In the sheriff’s race, incumbent Joe Janz won 545 votes (55.61 percent) to beat challenger Brynn Barnett, with 435 votes (44.39 percent).
In Tillman County, Bill Ingram won the sheriff’s seat by besting challenger Bill Hunt. Ingram won 546 votes (62.47 percent) to Hunt’s 328 votes (37.53 percent).
The City of Altus passed 22 out of 23 propositions, effectively establishing a new government. Voters turned down Proposition 12, a measure which removes the requirement for the city manager to reside within the city limits.
Results are as follows:
Proposition 1 — yes 58.27%; Proposition 2 — yes 86.925%; Proposition 4 — yes 80.06%; Proposition 5 — yes 77.90%; Proposition 6 —yes 73.02%; Proposition 7 — yes 80.39%; Proposition 8 — yes 80.04%; Proposition 9 — yes 80.21%; Proposition 10 — yes 84.79%; Proposition 11 —yes 83.15%; against Proposition 12 — no 51.09%; Proposition 13 — yes 81.94%; Proposition 14 — yes 77.20%; Proposition 15 —yes 79.34%; Proposition 16 — yes 87%; Proposition 17 — yes 76.12%; Proposition 18 — yes 84.29%; Proposition 19 — yes 80.89%; Proposition 20 — yes 79.08%; Proposition 21 — yes 75%; Proposition 22 — yes 79.25%; Proposition 23 — yes 86.16%
City of Anadarko passed all seven propositions:
Proposition 1 — yes 70.44%; Proposition 2 – yes 51.17%; Proposition 3 — yes 60.76%; Proposition 4 — yes 62.96%; Proposition 5 — yes 64.93%; Proposition 6 — yes 68.89%; Proposition 7 — yes 71.5%
The City of Marlow passed three propositions:
Proposition 1— yes 86.92%; Proposition 2 — yes 73.67%; Proposition 3 — 84.60%
At the federal level, both U.S. Fourth District Congressman Tom Cole and U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe easily won their primary elections to become the Republican nominees in November. Both will face opponents: for Cole, the challengers will be Democratic nominee Mary Brannon, Washington, and Libertarian Bob White, Norman. Inhofe will face Democratic nominee Abby Broyles, Oklahoma City; Libertarian Robert Murphy, Norman; and Independents Joan Farr, Tulsa, and A.D. Nesbit, Ada.