President Barack Obama drew three Democratic opponents Wednesday for Oklahoma's presidential primary in March.
Two Republicans also filed papers and the required $2,500 fee Wednesday to be on the GOP presidential primary ballot. They joined five other Republicans who filed earlier.
The total of 11 candidates — four Democrats and seven Republicans — who filed to be on next year's presidential ballot is almost half the number who were on the 2008 presidential primary ballot. Eighteen candidates filed four years ago.
On the 2008 ballot, Obama was one of seven Democrats, which included Jim Rogers, of Midwest City, who filed again Wednesday.
Of the 11 Republicans who filed in 2008, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, of Texas, filed again this week to be on next year's GOP presidential primary ballot.
Republicans filing Wednesday were U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., 55, and former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, 51. Huntsman's campaign sent a $2,500 check and declaration of candidacy form Tuesday, but the check was a campaign check instead of the required cashiers check. A cashiers check was sent overnight, arriving about 45 minutes before the 5 p.m. filing deadline.
Republicans who filed earlier are Rick Santorum, former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania; former U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Newt Gingrich; and Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
Bob Ely, an Illinois Democrat, and Randall Terry, 52, founder of the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue, filed Wednesday to oppose Obama.
Rogers, 76, was the only candidate to file in person.
Terry's Operation Rescue gained publicity in the late 1980s for blockading the entrances to abortion clinics; Terry led the group until 1991. He states on his campaign website that he has been arrested more than 40 times.
Rogers won last year's U.S. Senate Democratic primary before losing to U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee.
“That guy was a hard guy to beat,” Rogers said. “Maybe Obama will be easier.”
Rogers ran for the U.S. Senate three earlier times. He finished last in a four-candidate race in the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor in 2006.
His campaigns usually consist of him holding handmade signs on intersections in Midwest City and Oklahoma City. He said he also mails campaign literature.
Rogers said he is a former college professor and at one time was a rancher and a preacher, but doesn't like to give details. He said he may file for president in as many as 16 other states.
“I'm just kind of tired of all our jobs going overseas,” he said. “I'm kind of tired of all our economic stuff being sold out to foreign countries and our citizens here suffer by not having the jobs here and the investments here. We need a president who runs the United States first.”
Ely, 53, of Lake Forest, Ill., on his website, work
He also states there are “many good reasons” not to vote for him:
“If you're unemployed, I will find you a job and expect you to provide an honest day's work for an honest day's wages; I will raise taxes; I will slash spending.”
Ely did not return a telephone call, which, according to his website, should be expected.
“Don't bother,” it states next to his phone number. “I only answer calls from people I know.”