Oklahoma elections: Steve Russell and Patrice Douglas head to Republican runoff in 5th Congressional District race

Russell, a war veteran, and Douglas, a corporation commissioner, led a crowded field to replace U.S. Rep. James Lankford. Democrats Tom Guild and Al McAffrey also will face off Aug. 26.
by Chris Casteel Modified: June 25, 2014 at 12:10 am •  Published: June 25, 2014

Army veteran Steve Russell and Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Patrice Douglas headed for a runoff after finishing atop a crowded field in Tuesday’s Republican primary to replace U.S. Rep. James Lankford in the 5th District.

With all precincts reporting, Russell, of Oklahoma City, had 26.6 percent, and Douglas, of Edmond, had 24.5 percent. They will go head-to-head in the Aug. 26 runoff. State Sen. Clark Jolley, of Edmond, was third in the six-person field with 17 percent.

The 5th District includes most of Oklahoma County and Pottawatomie and Seminole counties. Lankford, R-Oklahoma City, left the seat open when he ran for the U.S. Senate this year; it was the third time since 2006 that the seat was open and crowded with Republican hopefuls.

The Democratic contest for Lankford’s seat will need a runoff. With all precincts counted, retired professor Tom Guild, of Edmond, had 42.1 percent and state Sen. Al McAffrey, of Oklahoma City, had 30.9 percent.

Douglas thrilled

With similar talking points against the Affordable Care Act and federal government “overreach,” the Republicans running for the 5th District seat offered little distinguishing political philosophy, so they focused on their experience.

Douglas, 51, pitched her time as an attorney for the family’s sheet metal business to prove her familiarity and sympathy with the private sector.

Russell reacts

Russell, 51, a retired U.S. Army Ranger whose unit in Iraq hunted down Saddam Hussein, talked about his military service and his term in the state Senate, where he authored legislation benefiting veterans. Russell raised about $200,000 and got $88,000 in help from an Iowa-based political action committee called America’s PAC that touts support for conservatives.

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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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