Randi Miller a no-show

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Tulsa County District 2 Commissioner Randi Miller was a no-show tonight at the After Five Republican Women's Club debate between her and Republican challenger Sally Bell. Miller committed over a month ago to participate in the forum, but she decided at the last minute to bail. I'm not surprised -- the more Miller opens her mouth, the more votes she loses. Her only hope is that her well-funded campaign consultants are able to craft a new, false image of her using ads.

The media was there to cover the event. KJRH Channel 2 (Cable 9)'s Casey Roebuck was there, but I'm told that the station would only have run a story if Miller had appeared. Without both candidates present, the station won't even run the story that Miller bailed out. I'm disappointed but not surprised. Since Glenn McEntyre's departure from KJRH, KOTV News on 6 seems to be the only TV outlet aggressively covering the County Courthouse. Maybe 6 will run a story about Miller's cowardice. (UPDATE: News on 6 did cover the no-show.)

I've seen that before -- during Vision 2025 and other campaigns, neighborhood groups and broadcast outlets let the more cowardly side dictate coverage: If one side didn't show up, the debate wouldn't happen. To their credit, KRMG insisted that their Downtown Kiwanis Club Vision 2025 debate would happen whether the vote yes side was there or not. The "yes" consultants relented and sent someone to represent their side.

We shall see what happens on Pat Campbell's show Wednesday morning at 8. I won't be shocked if Miller comes down with an acute attack of laryngitis. If she does show up, I think Pat would be smart to invite KFAQ afternoon host Chris Medlock in studio to help ask the questions. Medlock was endorsed by Miller to succeed her on the City Council, and if memory serves Medlock endorsed Miller in her race for County Commission. You have to have dealt with Randi for a while before you can see through her sympathy ploys and spin.

Unfortunately for Randi, I think Pat's already beginning to catch on. After two years, 740 KRMG's Joe Kelley is still a relative newcomer to Tulsa, and he certainly seems to "get" Miller. She's running out of media people to bamboozle.

UPDATE: Pat Campbell took some exception to what I wrote in the fourth paragraph above. He had Elvis Polo give me a call at about 6:30, and we spoke on air at 6:40. I appreciate the opportunity to clarify, and I'll link to the podcast when it's up. (My wife told me it took her two readings to get my point, so I wasn't as clear as I could have been.)

As I told Pat, my remarks were a commentary on Randi Miller's slipperiness, not on his astuteness. She will defend herself in a way that seems reasonable, unless you happen to remember the relevant contradicting fact. As well-studied as Pat is -- and the time he takes to study up on the issues is evident every day -- you almost need an encyclopedic memory to be able to pull out the relevant fact. I have no doubt Pat will be able to build that encyclopedia of local political knowledge over time, but it does take time. I mentioned Medlock as a resource because, having lived through and been politically active through the relevant history, he's already got those facts on tap.

MORE: Here's the link to the podcast of my conversation with Pat Campbell. During the first part of the hour, Pat clears up some misconceptions about how he plans to conduct the debate between Bell and Miller. I take extreme exception to the statement made on the podcast page that my comments above "insinuate that Pat is a little 'slow.'" Once again, the issue isn't Pat's astuteness -- of which there can be no doubt -- but Randi's slipperiness. No disrespect was intended, and I took pains to explain that on air this morning and in my update above.

AFTER FIVE CLUB PRESIDENT RESPONDS to "Steve" who called to defend Miller's absence in the first part of the 6 a.m. hour linked above:

What a turnout we had last night at the After Five Republican Women's Group! I hope everyone enjoyed the forum and welcome everyone back on the 3rd Monday of each month.

Unfortunately, there were some negative comments about our group made on the Pat Campbell radio program this morning by a caller that I feel need to be addressed.

After Five, as a chartered club by the Oklahoma Federation of Republican Women, does not and cannot take sides in a GOP primary. This has been stated in the monthly newsletter as well as announced at each primary forum we have held.

At last night's meeting I thanked Dan Newberry, Jan Megee and Sally Bell for fulfilling their commitment to the group and was disappointed that Randi Miller accepted another invitation canceling her appearance. The invitation for all of these candidates was extended on June 17. They all accepted immediately. We apologize that so many turned out to see the forum only to be disappointed that both commission candidates were not there. We only found out Friday evening (3 days prior). We tried to work with Commissioner Miller on timing to see if she could attend both events, as a couple of the other candidates did, however, it didn't work out.

This group is committed to treating all candidates with respect. Realizing crowd emotions can run high in these types of contested races, the officers of the group wanted to be sure it was conducted in a professional manner. Questions were taken from the audience IN WRITTEN FORM ONLY. The questions were not edited, in fact, one question was critical of my husband's radio station. It was asked as written. There were charges of planted or slanted questions being asked of Sally Bell. That is not true. Club officer & Tulsa County Chair, Joy Mohorovicic asked all of the questions written by the audience. We gave no one instructions except we didn't want speeches, we wanted questions.

We were accused of being a special interest group. Yes, we are! We are a Republican women's group. A diverse group of active Republican women who work in campaigns, fund campaigns and promote Republican ideals. In a primary, we often do not support the same candidate, but respect each other's efforts and come together in the general election to elect Republicans. That's the special interest we serve ... the Republican Party.


Cheryl Medlock

President, After Five Republican Women's Group

It's worth noting that "Steve," the caller defending Miller's absence from the After Five forum, said that Dan Newberry was at the Tulsa County News forum. He was also at the After Five forum. If he could do both, why couldn't Miller?

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Jeff Shaw Author Profile Page said:

The news is news, and this is news. I have never understood the idea that local journalists would not report important news.

Oh, yeah and news is biased, but you can still report it objectively. Some news will actually act to change behavior.

sbtulsa said:

I wish we could all just get a long, a long drink of seagrams or scnaps is what I mean.

Randi Miller's "slipperiness" is practiced miscommunication. But more to the point, she does not lead in any meaningful direction. She is being to where (what direction) to go by people outside public scrutiny. The knowledge base PC needs to build up is who are the string pullers and why do they want what they want.

In the end, Miller vs. Sally Bell will be an interesting conversation. Sally Bell is synonymous with an enterprise that is part of tens of thousand of childhood memories. Randi Miller is synonymous with that enterprises demise. This is what Miller's campaign has to overcome. Does anyone think the behind the scenes folks are guiding Miller how to do that?

Pamela said:

I'm glad I did not bother to try and go last night. I would have been furious. I have had an amazing work schedule the past few months. It has finally slowed up and I decided to rest. I'm not surprised either that she did not show up. What 'Steve' did not say on the call was that she had accepted the invite and canceled. That shows that 'Steve' is as slimy as Randi. Knowing all the details helps a person get a more accurate picture.

I hope that Sally Bell wins. At least I know what she stands for, what little I have heard from her.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on July 21, 2008 9:06 PM.

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