Rogers County voters will decide some races and elect other nominees in primary election voting that begins Thursday (June 19) at the Rogers County Election Board and concludes Tuesday (June 24) at precinct polling places.
Probably the hottest local race is for District Attorney in District 12, which covers Rogers, Mayes and Craig Counties.
Incumbent Janice Steidley has two Republican–Erin Oquin, a former special district judge, was fired for cause last summer by the elected judges who supervised her and Matthew Ballard, City of Claremore attorney, who has come under heavy fire from critics who say he encourages the city to violate the First Amendment rights of regular citizens costing taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars.
Steidley has come under fire from elements in law enforcement who contend she over-emphasizes Constitutional rights for citizens and suspects to the detriment of police. Supporters say a balance is needed to ensure criminals get convictions or pleas that stick.
Most local candidates for new terms filed as Republicans because of straight-ticket voting.
Perhaps the biggest surprise in that regard was Cathy Pinkerton Baker, an icon in the Democratic Party and member of a family with a long Democratic history.
But in a year when a Republican tsunami seemed certain in Oklahoma, she switched registration to Republican and drew an opponent in the primary, Jason Carini. The winner takes the office since no Democrat filed.
Here are the other filings for county and district races:
Elected (drew no opponent)
Scott Marsh, County Assessor, Republican, incumbent
Marty Quinn, State Senate District 2, currently state representative, Republican
Mark Lepak, House District 9, currently Claremore city councilor, Republican
Sheila Condren, District Judge, currently Associate District Judge, non-partisan
District Judge Dwayne Steidley, District Judge, incumbent, non-partisan
Steve Pazzo, Associate District Judge, currently Special Judge, non-partisan
Mel Dainty, Northwest Fire District board, incumbent, non partisan
Primary and general election contest
District 3 County Commissioner Kirt Thacker faces Ron Burrows in the Republican primary. The winner will face Democrat Dell Davis in the November General Election.
General Election contests only
District 1 Commissioner Dan DeLozier faces no opponent in the Democratic primary, but will vie for the seat in November with Republican Grant Yates, who also drew no primary opposition.
Democratic incumbent House District 6 State Rep. Chuck Hoskin faces no primary opponent but will face Republican challenger Marshall Scott McGuire in the November General Election.