MIAMI, Okla. —
Polls in Ottawa County will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. today for primary runoff elections for the open 2nd District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The district covers much of eastern Oklahoma and is highly contested because incumbent U.S. Rep. Dan Boren, a Democrat, isn’t seeking re-election.
The two top Republican vote-getters and the two top Democratic vote-getters in the June primary will face each other. Today’s runoff winners will join independent Michael Fulks, of Heavener, on the Nov. 6 general election ballot.
The Democratic contest features Rob Wallace and Wayne Herriman.
Wallace, 49, of Fort Gibson, was a prosecutor in the Pittsburg County district attorney’s office and was elected as district attorney for LeFlore and Latimer counties in 1998, serving through 2004. He also is a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma. He has bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Oklahoma in Norman.
Herriman, 59, lives south of Muskogee, near Warner. He owns Sunburst Seed Co. and Holman Seed Farm. He has a bachelor’s degree from Oklahoma State University, Stillwater. This is his first political campaign.
In June polling in Ottawa County, Wallace outpaced Herriman 1,170 to 560. In the 2nd District, Wallace received 46 percent of the vote in the three-man Democratic primary, compared with 42 percent for Herriman Wallace has raised nearly $670,000, while Herriman reported raising more than $410,000, including a $215,000 personal loan to his campaign.
On the Republican ballot are Markwayne Mullin and George Faught.
Mullin, 35, lives in Westville and owns Mullin Plumbing, Mullin Farms, Mullin Properties and Mullin Services. He has an associate degree from Oklahoma State University’s Institute of Technology in Okmulgee. This is his first campaign.
Faught, 50, lives in Muskogee and has a carpet cleaning and disaster restoration business. He was elected to three terms in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. He is a graduate of Muskogee High School and of Bryan Institute, a technical college.
In June polling in Ottawa County, Mullin had 380 votes to Faught’s 148 votes. In the 2nd District, Mullin received 42 percent of the vote in the six-man Republican primary, while Faught received 23 percent of the vote.
With the help of a $255,000 personal loan to his campaign. Mullin reached the $1 million fundraising mark, more than any of his opponents from either party. Faught reported raising about $463,000.
Both runoff elections have turned nasty, with Faught attacking Mullin for hiring a convicted felon and for a gaffe on the campaign trail in which Mullin said he supported a “single-payer” health care system. Herriman has blasted Wallace for several failed business ventures and for his record as a prosecutor.
THE HEAVILY DEMOCRATIC 2ND DISTRICT stretches across 26 counties and spans eastern Oklahoma, from the Kansas border in the north to the Red River border with Texas in the south.