GOP evenhanded in District 5 race

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Tulsa City Council District 5 candidate Nancy Jackson withdrew from the race earlier in the week and has thrown her support behind Cockroach Caucus standard-bearer Bill Martinson. Her voice was used a few days ago for an automated phone call on behalf of Martinson to District 5 voters, accusing the Republican Party of being unfair to certain candidates in the race.

In response to Jackson's accusations of unfairness, Tulsa County Republican Jerry Buchanan issued the following statement at a press conference today:

It has been my intention as the Chairman of the Tulsa County Republican Party to give every Republican Candidate in the City District 5 every opportunity to any and all information available from the party. We have maintained a neutral position for all candidates because it is not only fair, but the right thing to do.

Nancy Jackson, a former candidate of the upcoming city council race, has been prompted to use a pre-recorded phone message to blanket the constituents of District 5.

I would like to read an excerpt of the message containing the material:

"Hello, my name is Nancy Jackson and even though I have withdrawn my candidacy from the District 5 race, I wanted to tell you why I have given my full support to Bill Martinson. The adversarial nature of the local Republican Party officials toward candidates other than their chosen one in this race has been apparent from the start. First by encouraging candidates to rethink the candidacy and withdraw so that the heir-apparent, Charlotte Harer, would be the only option for the voters. Following that, they withheld access to valuable party lists to all of the candidates except for Charlotte."

Any candidate that might feel that information was not available to them is only because they did not ask for it. I have repeatedly called the Republican Candidates to see if they needed anything or any help with their campaigns. Ms. Jackson was asked if she had any needs from the Republican Party and which I was told that all was going fine and that she appreciated being asked. Later calls made were either ignored or not returned.

The Tulsa County Republican Party has not endorsed or given extra help to any Candidate competing for the Tulsa City District 5 seat. Any persons that might be misguided into stating so is mistaken or is stating untruths. Those that would use smear tactics, un-truths, inaccurate statements about our party are encouraged to disengage from the outside forces that are inherently trying to disrupt a fair and honest election. It would almost seem that there are those that would have a self interest in ruling our city government that are toying with a free and democratic election. The City of Tulsa is trying to fill a position vacated by Sam Roop with an individual that has Tulsa's best interest at heart and not the interest of someone or a group that have their own selfish motives. I understand that Ms. Jackson's campaign did not go her way, but to blame the Republican Party with untruths and trying to discredit a fellow Republican candidate with untruths is just not consistent with Republican Values.

Jerry Buchanan has been scrupulously even-handed in his dealings with these candidates. Whatever resources the county party has at its disposal -- and those resources are not as impressive as you might think -- they've been available to any Republican candidate.

As Republican chairman, he has expressed the concern that, in a first-past-the-post special election, with no primary and no runoff, too many Republican candidates would split the GOP vote and allow a Democrat to win with a minority of the vote. It's a simple political fact, and several sensible candidates assessed their chances, their willingness to commit time and resources to the race, and chose instead to drop out and support another candidate. Buchanan would have been negligent of his responsibilities if he had ignored the significant risk to the party's ability to retain a seat it has always held.

But the party chairman doesn't control the endorsements made by Republican elected officials and precinct leaders. Senator Jim Inhofe and Congressman John Sullivan, State Rep. Sue Tibbs and State Sen. Brian Crain are supporting Charlotte Harer because they've known her and worked with her for years in the party, and they know that she's a solid conservative and a hard worker.

As far as I'm aware, the other Republicans in the race have never been involved beyond checking the Republican box when they registered to vote. Checking that box entitles them to even-handed treatment from the party organization, but it doesn't entitle them to the loyalty and support of Republican officials and activists. Charlotte Harer has earned that loyalty and support. She has served for over four years as one of Tulsa County's representatives on the Republican state committee, and as president of the Tulsa County Republican Women's Club, she has increased membership from 50 to 250, building up a corps of women who stand ready to donate time and money to Republican candidates and causes. If anyone would deserve special treatment by the party organization, it would be Charlotte Harer.


Mike said:

The Tulsa Whirled shows its hand once again, by aligning the District 5 candidates' pictures the way they did. Martinson, their darling, is shown first (top right), while at the bottom of the list (lower left) is Charlotte Harer.

What a corrupted nest of vermin we have for a daily newspaper!

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on May 7, 2005 12:56 PM.

Volunteer for Charlotte Harer was the previous entry in this blog.

Thinking strategically in a multi-candidate election is the next entry in this blog.

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