Oklahoma Politics: September 2004 Archives

Carson up by 1%, Bilyeu drops to 2%


The third week results of the Wilson Research Strategies / KWTV poll are online here. Key results:

  • Bush gains 5%, Kerry drops 5% -- now a 64% - 24% race
  • In the Senate race, Sheila Bilyeu drops from 6% to 2%, which probably reflects the fact that she was in the news this week. Undecided drops from 19 to 17. Coburn is up 3% from last week, Carson up 2%. The race is now at 40% for Coburn, 41% for Carson. Margin of error is +/- 4.4%.

A quick glance at the internals shows Carson leading or tied in every congressional district except District 1. More analysis later.

Brad Carson is a liberal


All documented at bradcarsonisaliberal.com. The site's mission statement:

This website is dedicated to outlining Bradís real record in Congress. So while Brad may run as fast and furious as he can to the right, hoping the dust he leaves behind will cover over his liberal past, this website will clear the air so you, the voters, know Bradís real record, rather than his rhetoric.

Hat tip to former Tulsan Adam Doverspike, who runs the excellent unofficial blog covering Tom Coburn's campaign for Senate and contributes to group political blog redstate.org.

1st District debate wrap up


A few more notes, scribbled on paper (got tired of writing on my PDA):

On the UN -- Dodd said the US should pay its dues.

Sullivan said that the UN is nothing more than a debating society. The UN passed plenty of resolutions dealing with Saddam Hussein but never enforced them. The US should withhold its dues. Sullivan pointed to the oil-for-food scandal -- money intended for humanitarian relief was skimmed off the top to build palaces for Saddam. Sullivan mentioned seeing a report that someone connected with the UN was burning documents dealing with Saddam's WMD program.

On gun control -- Dodd said he got 100% on the NRA questionnaire. He said we don't need new laws but need to enforce laws on the books, although he went on to ridicule the expiration of the assault weapon ban, which suggests he would favor a new federal law to reinstate the ban.

Closing statements -- Dodd advised voters: "Vote your own interests. Look out for you." (So much for "ask not what your country can do for you.")

This is necessarily sketchy -- hard to listen and compose at the same time, but I thought you'd enjoy seeing the notes as I took them tonight. Overall impressions:

  • The new Jewish Community Center is a beautiful facility.
  • The crowd was rather small -- maybe 150 -- and mostly partisans for one candidate or the other. One observer thought that there were only a handful of audience members who were there as members of the Jewish community, but he expected much more interest in the Senate forum coming up in a few weeks.
  • John Sullivan's debating skills have improved markedly since his first race for Congress. He spoke with confidence and passion. The passion was particularly in evidence in his discussion of American policy towards Israel, which reflects his voting record.
  • Doug Dodd was his usual polished broadcast-professional self, for the most part, although he seemed unusually incoherent and inarticulate at a few points, particularly in discussing the Jewish people and the issue of abortion. On abortion, he at first said the the government shouldn't interfere in the decision, but then he hinted that there was nothing that could be done anyway with Roe v. Wade in effect, so no point in Congress debating it except to pass a constitutional amendment. There was something too about revisiting the definition of viability based on scientific advances.
  • Dodd was more open in his embrace of left-wing ideas -- opposing a ban on partial-birth abortion, opposing the defense of marriage against activist judges, treating Israel's elected government and Palestinian terrorists as morally equivalent (the code phrase for this is "being an honest broker"). His use of the phrase "our so-called coalition partners," referring to our allies in the Iraq war, speaks volumes about his view of foreign policy. I guess Britain and Spain and Poland don't count to Doug Dodd -- only the opinions of France and Germany matter.

In the words of Kris Kristofferson, "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose." Having already lost twice to John Sullivan, and with the national Democratic committees unwilling to put money into his race, Doug Dodd no longer feels compelled to campaign as a centrist, as he did in his first two races. He's letting his colors fly.

More 1st District debate


Raw notes:

This is turning into the Doug Dodd show: Given a chance to ask one question of Congressman Sullivan, Dodd went on to ask two follow-ups without any objection from the moderator. Sullivan handled it well, did a fine job defending Medical Savings Accounts and the Medicare prescription drug benefit.

Dodd on Israel: "part of our book is the book that Judaism uses" - unusually inarticulate. No reference to or condemnation of Palestinian terrorism.

Sullivan points to a record of support in Congress for Israel. The US shouldn't tell Israel what to do in peace negotiations. Until Arafat is dead nothing is going to happen. He's a thug and a terrorist. The Palestinian leaders don't want peace. They were given 95% of what they wanted and rejected it.

Social issues:

Dodd: "I am pro-choice." Would have voted against a ban of partial-birth abortion. "My church tells me" that marriage is between a man and a woman, but that should not affect the state's view of marriage. Opposes marriage amendment, both state and federal.

Sullivan: Prolife - life begins at conception. Supported ban on partial birth abortion. Supports federal marriage amendment.

Dodd accuses Sullivan of not listening and not quoting him accurately. Dodd gives mixed messages on Roe v. Wade - stuck with it - no point in discussing it short of a constitutional amendment, could adjust trimester in light of scientific advances in viability.

Dodd said if there were no charitable deduction, there'd be no incentive for giving.

Sullivan: Every taxpayer deserves tax relief. Tax relief is driving the GDP.

It's the 1st Congressional District debate between incumbent John Sullivan & three-time challenger Democrat Doug Dodd.

In opening statements, Sullivan emphasized his role in obtaining early funding for advanced airport security equipment and for increasing the depth of the McClellan-Kerr Navigation Channel, which connects Tulsa's port to the Mississippi.

Dodd appears to be trying to tag Sullivan with Tulsa's job losses.

First question: What can we learn from Israel about dealing with terrorism? Sullivan answered the question, Dodd used the question to launch into the Israeli-Palestinian situation, stating that in recent years
America hasn't been an "honest broker."

Dodd on Iraq -- It's a mess. Don't have enough international support. Slighting reference to our "so called coalition partners."

Sullivan focused on Saddam's mass graves and use of WMDs on his own people, and the progress made -- schools open, free elections on the way. A free and stable Iraq is good for the Middle East and good for the United States.

Dodd referred to our troops in Iraq as occupiers, not liberators.

More to come....

Who is Sheila Bilyeu?

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Many political observers were surprised at Shiela Bilyeu's filing for the Oklahoma U. S. Senate being vacated by Sen. Don Nickles. Ms. Bilyeu gave a home address in Virginia, which would seem to make her ineligible to run for the office -- even Hillary Clinton and Alan Keyes bothered to get an address in their new home states before filing for office. But no one challenged her candidacy, so she is on the ballot as an Independent. She has consistently attracted around 5 or 6 percent in the polls, apparently as a placeholder for the "None of the Above" voter.

In the process of writing that previous entry, I came across her name at the top of a list of former candidates for the Green Party nomination for president. Here's what Politics1 has to say about Shiela:

Sheila Bilyeu was one of only two candidates who qualified for the Statehood-Green Party Presidential primary ballot in the District of Columbia. However, it appears she is only running as a "favorite son" candidate. In the DC primary, she lost of David Cobb by a 2-1 margin. Bilyeu was previously a 1986 candidate in the Democratic primary for Texas Governor against incumbent Mark White (but she captured only 4% of the vote). Bilyeu's 2004 candidacy was limited only to the DC contest. She placed 11th (last place) at the Green convention with 2 delegates on the first ballot.

Oklahoma blogger Awe Contraire considered supporting Sheila, but learned a bit more about her:

Well, sure glad I held off recommending independent Sheila Bilyeu for Senate. I was reflexively turning to her because, basically, she is not Coburn, who is a rabid neo-con, or Carson, who is a DINO (Democrat in name only), and is against the war in Iraq and thinks we need better funding for human services. Unfortunately, she also thinks she has a radio in her head implanted by the feds who send her derogatory messages via satellite.

Bilyeu herself replies in the comments:

Before you write me off you should search for the truth and if you did you would find that I do have a radio type device in my head. An xray could confirm it for you. If I was crazy there are plenty of people who would have been glad to put me away. JUST PLEASE SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH AND CARE ABOUT JUSTICE FOR ALL. THANKS.

It's not every candidate who offers to have her head examined.

Here's a link to the Oklahoman article that Awe Contraire links to -- free registration required.

Updated dead links on 2015/11/23, with the help of the Internet Archive Wayback Machine. (Support historic preservation of online content with a tax-deductible donation.) Ms. Bilyeu contacted me via Facebook last week with the following request: "Would you please delete anything in the past regarding my political envolvement." I thanked her for her polite request, but I don't delete information from my website without a very good reason, particularly if it pertains to a current candidate for public office. There is a website for a Shiela Bilyeu campaign for U. S. Senate in Arizona. The copyright date on the site is 2015, and the home page states, "Please help me raise money to run against John Mc Cain in Arizona."

Coburn, Carson in dead heat

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The latest poll numbers from Wilson Research in the Oklahoma U.S. Senate race shows conservative Republican Tom Coburn 2 points behind liberal Democrat Brad Carson. It appears that Carson's ad campaign trying to redefine himself as a conservative has had some impact. All the cross-tabs are available in this PDF file.

The overall numbers: Coburn at 37%, Carson at 39%, Bilyeu at 6%, and 19% undecided. Margin of error is +/- 4.4%. From last week, that's a 5% drop for Coburn, a 3% gain for Carson, a 2% gain for Undecided, and a 1% gain for Bilyeu.

Some interesting internals:

  • The more educated, the more likely to support Coburn -- Coburn leads 45-36 among those with a post-graduate education, 43-34 among college graduates, 39-37 among those with some college, but trails 28-45 among those with a high school graduation or less.

  • Coburn only leads 49-26 among self-described conservatives.

  • Coburn only leads 55-24 among Bush supporters, 56-23 among Republicans.

  • Coburn leads in four of the five congressional districts -- the exception is CD 2, where he trails 25-58.

  • Coburn leads in only one age group -- 25-34, where he leads 55-27.

  • Marriage amendment supporters are almost evenly split, favoring Coburn 42-38.

The poll also covers the presidential race (Bush leads 59-29) and five of the state questions.

UPDATE: Charles of Dustbury teases a few more interesting details from the data.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Oklahoma Politics category from September 2004.

Oklahoma Politics: August 2004 is the previous archive.

Oklahoma Politics: October 2004 is the next archive.

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