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Oklahoma elections: Republican shocker in Little Dixie

For the first time, most residents of McCurtain County will have a Republican representing them in the state House of Representatives. Republican Rusty Farley received 51 percent of the vote in the state House District 1 race, topping incumbent Democrat Dennis Bailey by 134 votes.
BY MICHAEL BAKER Published: November 4, 2010
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— Even part of Little Dixie went red.

For the first time, most residents of McCurtain County will have a Republican representing them in the state House of Representatives.


"I'm still just kind of in a state of disbelief," said Republican Rusty Farley, who received 51 percent of the vote in the state House District 1 race. "I never thought I'd live to see the day a Republican would be elected in McCurtain County."

Farley, 57, was able to pull off the upset in a district where 81 percent of the 15,574 voters are registered Democrats. Farley topped incumbent Democrat Dennis Bailey by 134 votes, according to uncertified returns.

Farley said his campaign spent just $70; the money was used for an advertisement in the local newspaper.

"I didn't really campaign a whole lot," he said. "It was an unusual strategy, I suppose. ... I can honestly say I don't owe anybody any favors for getting elected."

Farley said he is not a political novice and served on the Haworth School Board for 18 years. He unsuccessfully ran against Bailey in 2008.

McCurtain County Election Board Secretary Lue Davis said Tuesday's result was unexpected but "seemed to follow the trend around the country."

Farley said the result was likely a combination of the Republican dominance on a larger scale and also the fact Bailey voted against a 2009 bill to place a monument to the Ten Commandments on the state Capitol grounds.

"It must have just been my time," Farley said. "I'm a religious man. I go to church. I prayed about it."


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