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Gov. Mary Fallin rules out presidential run, defends job poaching in D.C. speech

At a National Press Club appearance, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin also pitched her initiative to match job training and education with the needs of businesses.
by Chris Casteel Published: September 17, 2013

Fallin, who received a degree in family relations and child development from Oklahoma State University, was asked what she would study if she were starting college today.

“Actually, I might major in political science,” she said. “I didn't really focus on that or speech or debate when I was in high school and college so I might go back and take some of those courses now.”

Asked about efforts to build safe rooms in the wake of tornadoes that struck schools in May, Fallin said she was having discussions with state and local leaders. Part of those discussions, she said, was the potential for using federal disaster aid and private contributions that followed the tornadoes for making schools safer.

Fallin's comment about a woman president came after being asked about women's “substantive participation” in politics, education and business in Oklahoma.

Fallin said there were naysayers about her chances ever to hold statewide elected office — she was elected Oklahoma's first female lieutenant governor in 1994.

“But I've been able to hold four different offices in our state,” she said.

“We do need to encourage more women to get involved in politics in our nation. Certainly they can make a difference, whether it's running on a local level, as my mother did as mayor of Tecumseh, or whether it's running for Congress or the U.S. Senate or running for governor.”

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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