WASHINGTON — Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner Patrice Douglas raised far more money than the rest of the many candidates vying for the Oklahoma City-area congressional seat, according to campaign finance reports filed this week.
Douglas, an Edmond Republican, reported raising $404,537 from late January through March. Douglas tapped a network of donors in Edmond, Oklahoma City, Tulsa and other cities for a war chest twice as big as any other in the race.
The 5th District seat is open for the second time in four years because Rep. James Lankford, R-Oklahoma City, is running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee. The district includes most of Oklahoma County and Pottawatomie and Seminole Counties.
A parade of candidates sought the seat the last time it was open, in 2010, including well-known state legislators with strong financial backing. But Lankford, a political newcomer who had run a Baptist youth camp and had relatively little money, won the seat.
This year, several current and former office holders also are running for the seat.
Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond, raised nearly $178,000 for his campaign, getting donations in a few cases from some of the same people who gave to Douglas.
Former U.S. Army Ranger Steve Russell, R-Oklahoma City, who served a term in the state Senate, raised nearly $107,000 for his campaign. And former state Rep. Shane Jett, R-Tecumseh, raised nearly $44,000.
State Rep. Mike Turner, R-Edmond, did not file a report — and may not have been required to since he didn’t declare his federal candidacy until mid-March — but he has raised enough money to purchase television time.
The sixth Republican in the race, Harvey Sparks, of Oklahoma City, reported raising nearly $18,000. Sparks is a minister and former congressional staffer.
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