2012 profiles: Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin hopes for streak to continue

BY MICHAEL MCNUTT mmcnutt@opubco.com Published: January 15, 2012

Fallin, who has been involved in state government since 1990 when she was elected as a state representative and then served three terms as lieutenant governor, said she wants to make sure core governmental services — transportation, public safety, health and human services and education — are properly funded.

Another challenge for Fallin, who served four years in Congress before being elected governor in 2010, is developing her plan to nearly eliminate the state highway system's more than 700 structurally deficient bridges by 2019. She will be asking legislators to raise the state's annual contribution to a highway fund by $15 million each year and to increase the total funding cap to $550 million.

Fallin said she expects Republicans, who fared well in Oklahoma in 2010 and who for the first time in state history hold every statewide office, should fare well this election year.

“As long as we continue to deliver on what we have said our priorities are ... the people of Oklahoma will reward them with re-election,” she said.

Democratic President Barack Obama failed to win any of the state's 77 counties in 2008, but nationally Fallin said she expects a tight race.

“There's a good chance that a Republican, if they get their message out and work hard, can have the opportunity to win back the president's office,” she said.

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