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Oklahoma House GOP members gained four new seats during Tuesday’s election

BY MICHAEL MCNUTT Modified: November 6, 2008 at 5:15 am •  Published: November 6, 2008
The 61-to-40 political makeup of the 101-member state House of Representatives has a familiar ring to House Speaker Chris Benge.

When Benge, R-Tulsa, was elected 10 years ago to the House, 61 members were Democrats.

Now, for the last two years of Benge’s legislative career, the House will have 61 Republicans after picking up four seats in Tuesday’s election.

An attempt to try to increase that number by one was dropped Wednesday.

Republican Aaron Carlson, who lost by 63 votes out of 14,421 cast, said he will not seek a recount of the votes cast in House District 34, which covers Payne County.

"While the election was the closest in the state, I believe in our election system and in our election workers, and I do not believe a recount would change the outcome,” said Carlson, of Stillwater.

As a result, Cory Williams will succeed Rep. Terry Ingmire, R-Stillwater, who could not seek re-election to the House because of legislative term limits.

"I’m glad we have a sense of finality to it,” said Williams, of Stillwater. "We were pretty comfortable with the margin even if we had gone into a recount situation.”

A night of firsts

Rep. Scott BigHorse, D-Pawhuska, was the only incumbent to lose Tuesday. He was defeated by Republican Eddie Fields of Wynona, who lost to BigHorse two years ago.

Republicans picked up four seats held by Democrats who could not seek re-election because of term limits.

Republican members will be sworn in Nov.

A look at how Oklahoman's voted in major races, broken down by county


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