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Election Notes: Not as red as Utah; Mullin's sweep; Elizabeth Warren

Election notes from The Oklahoman's Washington bureau
by Chris Casteel Published: November 11, 2012

Oklahoma: Not

as red as Utah and Wyoming?

In 2008, Oklahomans gave Republican presidential nominee John McCain his highest winning percentage in the country — 65.65 percent — which spawned the Oklahoma GOP boast of “reddest state in the nation.”

Oklahoma didn't exactly turn blue on Tuesday, but Utah and Wyoming were redder, at least in the presidential race. Utah — where, the Census Bureau reports, 62 percent of people are Mormon — gave 73 percent of the vote to Republican Mitt Romney, the first Mormon presidential nominee of a major party.

Wyoming, which gave McCain his second biggest margin in 2008, gave Romney 69 percent on Tuesday.

In Oklahoma, Romney won 67 percent of the vote.

Two years ago, The Oklahoman talked to Republican Party officials in Wyoming, Idaho and Utah — all of whom claimed that their states were the reddest. The Idaho official noted that Oklahoma couldn't make the claim since it still had a Democratic congressman. Voters in the 2nd District took care of that on Tuesday, electing Republican Markwayne Mullin to succeed Democratic Rep. Dan Boren.

Utah still has a Democratic member of Congress.

Mullin got more votes this year than Boren in '10

Republican Markwayne Mullin won all of the 26 counties in the eastern Oklahoma congressional district that has not been held by a Republican since it was redrawn after the 2000 census to consolidate Democratic counties. Mullin won counties on Tuesday that likely have never been captured by a Republican congressional candidate.

Mullin also bested, by a small amount, the percentage that retiring Rep. Dan Boren, D-Muskogee, got in his last race in the 2nd District. Boren got 56.5 percent in 2010; Mullin got 57.3 percent on Tuesday.

Boren decided to retire after his last race, at least in part because he knew how tough it would be to run in a district targeted by Republicans in a presidential election year with President Barack Obama at the top of the ballot.

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by Chris Casteel
Washington Bureau
Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. After covering the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City, he moved to Washington in 1990, where...
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