Mullin campaign "tried to get me fired," reporter claims; Mullin, Pettigrew, Wood not registered in district last year
The Republican nomination for Oklahoma's 2nd Congressional District is getting national attention. Kerry Picket of the Washington Times writes that Markwayne Mullin is "under the gun" regarding the 2009 BATFE and BAPD seizure of firearms at his place of business in Broken Arrow (in the 1st CD), weapons owned by one of Mullin's employees, a convicted felon arrested on firearms violations.
Picket reports that the Claremore Daily Progress reporter covering the case says she's being targeted by the Mullin campaign for her stories about the candidate:
According to the writer of the Claremore Daily Progress piece, Salesha Wilken, as a result of shedding light on this story, the Mullin campaign has engaged in a smear campaign of her reputation and attempted to get her fired from her paper.
"The campaign has tried to get me fired on multiple occasions. They've tried to discredit me with other publications. Obviously, they were trying to intimidate me." According to Wilken, Mullin's campaign said that she "was a target."
However, Wilken says her editors have stood behind her reporting. "Everything I've written, I can document with either audio or court documents," Wilken said. "Markwayne Mullin does not want to answer questions about problems with the campaign," Wilken added pointing out she similarly scrutinized other candidates in the OK-2 GOP primary, but she did not receive the same backlash from those campaigns.
Of the six candidates for the GOP nomination, only three were registered to vote in the district last year, according to voter records obtained on June 30, 2011, from the Oklahoma State Election Board.
State Rep. George Faught, Dustin Rowe, and Dwayne Thompson were all registered to vote at their current addresses in Muskogee, Johnston, and Cherokee Counties, respectively. Two of their three rivals were registered in other congressional districts and one was not registered to vote in Oklahoma at all.
As of June 30, 2011, Markwayne Mullin was registered to vote in Wagoner County Precinct 730379 in the 1st Congressional District, and former State Rep. Wayne Pettigrew was registered in Oklahoma County Precinct 550341 in the 5th Congressional District. Dakota Wood was not registered to vote in Oklahoma, but was a resident of Vienna, Virginia, near Washington, DC. Pettigrew represented Oklahoma County in the State Legislature.
Markwayne Mullin moved his registration from Wagoner County to Adair County on July 11, 2011. Mullin appears to have only voted eight times since 2000, starting with that year's general election.
Wayne Pettigrew moved his registration from Oklahoma County to Pittsburg County on July 14, 2011. He was a frequent voter in Oklahoma County.
Dakota Wood registered to vote in Rogers County on September 2, 2011. He voted in the March 6 presidential primary. Wood was not registered to vote in Oklahoma last July. According to Fairfax County, Va., land records, on April 23, 2012, Wood sold his home at 2247 Loch Lomond Dr in Vienna, Virginia, for $786,000. His declaration of candidacy lists his parents' address on Carefree Drive near Claremore as his address. According to his biography, Wood moved with his family to Claremore in 1978, graduating from high school there in 1981. His wife is a Rogers County native, the sister of former State Rep. Tad Jones.
(UPDATE: Dakota Wood responds in the comments with further background information. "The opportunity to represent my home town/county/district was one I and my family couldn't pass by. I resigned my position last summer as a Senior Fellow with the nation's preeminent non-profit institute for national security and we sold our home for a $120,000 LOSS (after realtor fees and home upgrades needed to sell it in the worst market since the great depression and not counting the 9 months of mortgage as it sat on the market unsold). With no income and no ability to purchase another home given the great sacrifices we'd made, my parents moved out of the home we'd bought in 1978 so that I could rent it to have some place to house my family. We've since moved into town (Claremore) for a more permanent residence.")
The current congressman, Dan Boren, and his predecessor Brad Carson both lived outside the 2nd District until shortly before running for the office -- Boren lived in Seminole in the 5th District and moved to Muskogee, Carson lived in midtown Tulsa in the 1st District and moved to Claremore.
While you don't have to reside in a congressional district in order to run for the office, and in Britain it's normal for a member of London's political class to run in any random constituency, America has a strong tradition of geographical representation. We like the idea of sending our neighbors -- people who shop and work and worship where we do -- to represent us in Washington.
Here are the voter registration records as they were on June 30, 2011, for all candidates for the 2nd District seat. The first line is precinct and name, second line is registration number, party, and status, third line is street address, fourth line is birthdate and registration date; fifth line is mailing address (if different from street address), remaining lines are the 20 most recent elections in which the candidate has voted. First two digits of the precinct number indicate the county sequence number in alphabetical order -- 51 is Muskogee, 16 is Cherokee, 73 is Wagoner, 55 is Oklahoma.
P.O. BOX 246;;FORT GIBSON;OK;74434;
P O BOX 24;;FORT GIBSON;OK;74434;
54562;;US HWY 59;;;HEAVENER;74937;
54562 US HWY 59;;HEAVENER;OK;74937;
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The Republican nomination for Oklahoma's 2nd Congressional District is getting national attention. Kerry Picket of the Washington Times writes that Markwayne Mullin is "under the gun" regarding the 2009 BATFE and BAPD seizure of firearms at his place o... Read More