In his first race for statewide office, state Rep. Ken Miller of Edmond defeated a former state senator Tuesday to secure the Republican nomination for state treasurer.
Miller, an economics professor at Oklahoma Christian University, garnered 63 percent of the vote in his race with Owen Laughlin, who left the senate in 2008 because of term limits.
On the campaign trail, Miller touted his legislative record and private sector experience as a banker. Miller, 43, said his message of fiscal conservatism and preparation resonated with voters.
Miller, chairman of the powerful House Appropriation and Budget Committee, raised three times as much money as Laughlin, a longtime Woodward resident who now lives in Edmond.
Laughlin, 59, campaigned on reform of state purchasing and competitive contracts for legal work on behalf of the state, saying Oklahoma could save millions.
"I still think there's great waste in Oklahoma government that needs to be addressed and I hope others will do that," said Laughlin, a self-employed investor and real estate manager.
Miller will face Democrat Stephen Covert of Midwest City in the November election. Covert, 61, was unopposed in his party's primary.
The treasurer's post is being vacated by Democrat Scott Meacham, who chose not to run for re-election. Gov. Brad Henry appointed Meacham to the position in 2005. Meacham won a full term in 2006.
The treasurer's office is in charge of the state's cash and investments.