Democratic candidate files to run for Oklahoma governor against Mary Fallin

R.J. Harris, 40, of Norman, filed a statement Monday with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission indicating he has formed a committee to raise money for his gubernatorial campaign as a Democrat to run against incumbent Gov. Mary Fallin.
BY Graham Lee Brewer gbrewer@opubco.com Modified: November 4, 2013 at 7:40 pm •  Published: November 5, 2013
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More than two weeks after Gov. Mary Fallin launched her re-election campaign, an opposing candidate has established a campaign committee.

R.J. Harris, 40, of Norman, filed a statement Monday with the state Ethics Commission indicating he has formed a committee to raise money for his campaign.

Harris said he decided to enter the race as a Democrat over the weekend. He said he carefully considered his options, noted that Fallin had no clear opposition and felt that someone had to step into the race.

“Conventional wisdom would say there's a lot stacked against us and a lot in favor of the incumbent,” Harris said. “It's just not a true and legitimate government that gets elected in 2014 if we don't have a choice.”

Harris, who ran against U.S. Rep. Tom Cole, R-Moore, both as a Republican and an independent, has until the end of January to report to the commission how much money he has raised.

Harris also ran for the Libertarian Party's presidential nomination in the 2012 election. He currently serves as a chief warrant officer 3 in the Oklahoma National Guard, where he has served for nearly 23 years.

Wallace Collins, chairman of the Oklahoma Democratic Party, said Harris is a good candidate for the party and he supports his campaign.

As of Sept. 30, Fallin had raised just shy of $1.5 million.

On Oct. 17, Fallin said she would seek a second term and continue to work for economic growth.


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