By Kim Baker
Eagle Guest Writer
A record number of voters turned out for the 2018 Oklahoma gubernatorial race. Endorsed by Pres. Trump, Republican Kevin Stitt defeated Democrat Drew Edmonson to win the governor’s race. Stitt had 54.3 percent of the vote total to Edmonson’s 42 percent; Libertarian Chris Powell received 3.4 percent of a record 1,184,355 million votes cast.
In a stunning upset, US Congress candidate Democrat Kendra Horn defeated Republican incumbent Steve Russell with a 51 percent to 49 percent, 3,300 vote margin win of 240,000 votes cast. Horn breaks a nearly 40 year drought of Democratic presence in the 5 th District, Central, Oklahoma City, United States Congress Representative seat. She is the first woman to hold the post. The last time a Democrat represented Oklahoma on the national level was in 2012.
Republican Kevin Hern won Oklahoma’s 1 st District congressional seat, defeating Democrat Tim Gilpin 59 percent to 41 percent. Jim Bridenstine previously held the seat. He now heads the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
In the topsy-turvy Oklahoma State Legislature, fourteen legislative seats flipped on election night. Seven house seats changed from Democrat to Republican. Four house seats switched from Republican to Democrat. Overall, the night ended with Republicans picking up three seats in the House, cutting the number of Democrats from 28 to 25 in the 101 member State House of Representatives.
The Republican controlled House now has 76 votes needed to raise tax revenue, 68 votes needed for measures requiring two thirds votes and 51 simple majority votes needed without any Democratic help. Three Democratic House incumbents lost. Minority Leader Steve Kouplen, Beggs, Okla., was defeated by Republican Logan Phillips 52 percent to 48 percent. Former teacher and Rep. Karen Gaddis, Tulsa, said her attempts to defend herself against heavily financed television attack ads by Republican opponent T.J. Marti failed, as she was defeated 53 percent to 48 percent. Seasoned Rep. Donnie Condit, McAlester was defeated by Republican David Smith. On the State Senate side, one seat changed from Democratic to Republican and Democrats picked up one seat, bringing their total to 9 of 48 senate seats.
In Tulsa City Council races, women will now hold 7 of the 9 seats. Kara Joy McKee defeated Daniel Regan in the District 4 race. In a Tulsa City Council District 7 Special Election, Lori Decter Wright won against a crowded field of seven candidates. Dist. 3, Crista Patrick defeated Justin Rolph.Cass Fahler defeated Mykey Arthrell in District 5.
Only one of five State Questions passed – SQ794 Marsy’s Law Crime Victim’s Rights.