Skip to comments.Oklahoma House Speaker moving toward Senate bid (T.W. Shannon)
Posted on 01/21/2014 6:12:46 PM PST by AuH2ORepublican
Oklahoma House Speaker T.W. Shannon is forming an exploratory committee to look more closely at a potential run in the special election for retiring Sen. Tom Coburns (R-Okla.) seat, multiple sources tell The Hill.
Shannons office declined to comment, but sources say he's now expected to run.
One source tells The Hill Shannon has received dozens of calls from supporters very enthusiastically encouraging him to run since Coburns announcement last week that hell retire at the end of the year.
Shannon would run as a conservative alternative to Rep. James Lankford (R-Okla.), who entered the race Monday to considerable pushback from conservative groups.
"We have reviewed his record and it's clear that conservatives cannot count on him to fight for their principles, Senate Conservatives Fund Executive Director Matt Hoskins said in a statement after Lankford announced.
That group endorsed Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) for reelection and urged him to run for Senate last year. Bridenstine would likely get the support of most of those deep-pocketed national conservative groups if he ran.
But with Shannon in the race, Bridenstine wouldnt be guaranteed to pick up the anti-Lankford mantle, and the two run the risk of splitting the conservative vote and giving Lankford an opening to take the primary.
More likely, observers say, is for the primary to head to a runoff, where Lankford and an alternative candidate would face off.
Shannons supporters believe he could have a shot at making it to the runoff because hes got the strong political ties within Oklahoma that Bridenstine lacks, and the state House speaker has also been a stronger fundraiser than the congressman. Shannon has raised his profile within the state over the past year, as he was named one of the Republican National Committees Rising Stars.
Sources close to Bridenstine say he hasnt yet made his decision, and it ultimately wouldnt be based on what any other candidate does.
He has a good chance! & you’re right, he would drive the left bonkers. Even more reason to support him.
I know Lankford is in..don’t think Bridenstine has announced yet.
He won’t drive them bonkers. They’ll just have their Judas Goats and Uncle Toms call him “a sellout”, and try to marginalize him.
“He wont drive them bonkers. Theyll just have their Judas Goats and Uncle Toms call him a sellout, and try to marginalize him.”
I have some concern that “Yellow Dog” Democrats in OK would go for Boren in such a match up.
Yellow dog democrats are becoming more rare in Oklahoma.
We can thank captain zero for that.
He didn’t carry a single county in either election.
I think the old yellow dogs are finally voting GOP.
I hope Shannon does announce and run. That would almost certainly insure a runoff where Jim Bridenstine would advance and defeat the GOPe’s candidate Lankford.
The GOPe HATES the runoff system because, as in Texas last cycle with Ted Cruz defeating the GOPe’s candidate Dewhurst, it defeats their tactic of splitting conservative votes and allowing the GOPe’s candidate to win with a mere plurality.
So come on Shannon and any other candidate—the more the merrier for vote splitting purposes. We want the REAL AuH2ORepublican (i.e., Jim Bridenstein) in the race to win with the Senate Conservatives Fund’s backing. And won’t Rove and his fellow travelers hate that!
I’m a conservative, voting Republican in Oklahoma, and I have been really impressed by Lankford, whom I first heard speak at a pro-life rally in OKC a couple of years ago. He is serious, intelligent, informed, and well-spoken. He could be a great senator for our state. (I have no connection to him, if you are wondering.)If he doesn’t become senator, he could also make a great governor.
First of all, I don’t think that Dan Boren would give up his high-paying job with the Chickasaw Nation to run for the Senate, particularly in a race that well could pit him against Chickasaw Nation member T.W. Shannon. If Boren wanted to be in politics, he would have stayed in his House seat, where he did not appear to be vulnerable despite it trending increasingly Republican.
Second, the OK-04 (SW OK) certainly had a higher percentage of Yellow Dog Democrats 20 years ago than does OK as a whole nowadays, yet it replaced Democrat Dave McCurdy with black Republican J.C. Watts, and then replaced Watts with Native American Republican Tom Cole.
Third, Republicans don’t need to many Yellow Dog Democrat votes to get elected statewide nowadays.
Fourth, T.W. Shannon is an extraordinary politician, and the 2014 midterms are going to be brutal for Democrats, so I don’t think that any Democrat (not even Boren) would be able to run a competitive race against Shannon.
We have “eliminated”, politically speaking, most ‘yellowdogs’ in Oklahoma. Ha! They r an endangered species.
You are assuming a lot of things there. And you know what happens when you assume ....
But I don’t think that Bridenstine will run, in which case we won’t get the chance to see whether you’re correct about who would win the election.
As for primary run-offs, I agree with you that they’re terrific (and not just because they allowed Cruz to beat Dewhurst and DeMint to defeat Beasley), and wish that every state had them. Having someone win the primary with 30% makes absolutely no sense.
I really want Bridenstine to run, but I wonder if he wants to risk losing his House seat. Lankford is UNACCEPTABLE in any case. The upside is, once he is defeated, we can replace his House seat.
Shannon? I’ve heard good things. If Bridenstine declines, he’s a million times better than Lankford.
(BTW, if we had 50 black senators, we’d still be racist)
“(BTW, if we had 50 black senators, wed still be racist)”
Knew he had to be conservative; his wife is hot.
Illini state ... primary is March 18 ...
CD-16 gonna be close?
CD-13? CD-11, CD-8?
Funny how that works.
Lankford is a clone of Tom Cole. He would not have announced his quest but for Cole’s encouragement. He is lock-step with Cole. Cole is an insider friend of Boehner. ‘Nuff said.
They are both GOPe.
Lots of freepers are hardcore pimping Bridenstine. I wonder what mouth breathing “higher power” is behind their ardor.
I agree with you on Shannon. If he won that would be an amazing and important victory. He has been a very impressive young man. Lankford could be OK, but his record shows he has been more of a party organization man. Wish I knew who Fallin, Coburn, Inhofe and Cole would endorse. I assume Cole and Watts would go for T W, but read one post which said Coburn might endorse Lankford.
Fallin and Coburn are liberals.
Inhofe is good. Cole is an ultra liberal.
Shannon has been battling Governor Fallin over Common Core for the last year.
Adorable kids. I love the little boys expression!
I haven’t been following the IL congressional primaries closely, but here’s my take:
IL-16: Overwhelmingly Republican CD, so the GOP primary is the only election that matters. Congressman Adam Kinzinger (who defeated the more conservative Congressman Don Manzullo in the 2012 primary) has raised over $750,000, while his only GOP challenger (filing closed in December, so no one else can jump in), Rockford Tea Party leader David Hale, has raised under $5,000. (BTW, most of Rockford is in the adjoining IL-17.) Unless Hale starts raising some major money, Kinzinger will win handily.
IL-13: A marginal district (Romney carried it by like 0.2%) represented by Republican Rodney Davis, it’s the one IL CD that got away from the Democrats in 2012 (they conceded the four CDs into which they packed as many Republicans as possible). Davis only got the nomination because Congressman Tim Johnson dropped out after having won the nomination, and a committee of party hacks from the district picked Davis (an aide to Congressman Shimkus) over former Miss America and conservative spokesperson Erika Harold. Harold is running in the primary this year, but is well behind in fundraising (she had raised $150,000 by Sept. 30, while Davis had raised over $1 million *more than her* by such date), and the few polls I’ve seen have Davis well ahead. I hope that Harold can defeat Davis, since she’s an extremely effective communicator and she’d join Mia Love and maybe one or two others as the first black Republican women in Congress (which would help us to convince conservative and traditionalist blacks to “come home” to the GOP), and since I don’t like how Davis was hand-picked in 2012 only to see him barely eke out a win against a second- or third-tier Democrat opponent, but as of now Harold has quite the uphill climb. And the winner of the GOP primary will face a competitive general election against Judge Ann Callis or Professor George Gollin.
IL-11: I think that state Representative Darlene Senger is the only one of the candidates running who has the experience and profile to run a competitive race against Democrat Congressman Bill Foster. http://www.sengerforcongress.com/ No idea how the primary race is going, but I do see that Senger has raised almost twice as much as presumably her toughest challenger for the nomination (Chris Balkema).
IL-08: This is the district that Congressman Walsh coughed up to the execrable Tammy Duckworth; it was made way more liberal in 2012 redistricting, but deadbeat-dad Walsh likely would have blown the race even under the old lines. In 2014, the only GOP candidate who has reported raising any money is businesswoman Manju Goel, an immigrant from India: http://www.manjuforcongress.com/. Goel had raised $200,000 as of September 30, and my experience with Indian-American candidates is that they have no problem raising money (Indian-Americans tend to be very affluent and like to contribute to political campaigns of fellow Indian-Americans). Her sole GOP opponent, military veteran Larry Kaifesh, had not raised any money by Sept. 30, and I’m not sure if he can make it a real contest (I’m copying some Chicago-area FReepers for their input on this and the other races). The winner of the primary should be competitive against Duckworth in spite of the district’s liberal lean.
I hope this helps.
I agree, the little boy’s expression is priceless. That’s as good a family picture as you’ll ever see.
Is there anything particularly wrong with Bridenstine ? I think OK Conservatives consider him the best of the House delegation with Lankford & Cole bringing up the bottom. The big question remains if he’ll run, which would split the vote between him and Shannon and potentially hand it to Lankford. There’s no excuse for not getting the most right-leaning candidate sent to DC.
Inhofe runs again this year, so the next opportunity for interested parties won’t be until 2020 (presumably when he’d retire when he’s 86). I’m surprised he’s running again, he must be fairly confident he’ll get a chairmanship with a GOP takeback. At present, it looks like the Dems may not even challenge him.
I don’t think there’s a thing wrong with Bridenstine that I can tell. I’d rather support Shannon, though, who has compiled a conservative voting record over much more than a single year (Bridenstine’s 2012 election was his first foray into politics) and who has proven that he can shepherd bills through the legislature. I also think that Shannon’s election to the Senate would help the GOP expand its voter base by increasing the number of black conservative Republicans in the national spotlight.
Bridestine has been in Congress for just one year; I hope that he stays in the House for the time being and builds a record of accomplishment before seeking higher office. But if Bridenstine runs, and makes the run-off against Lankford, I’d support Bridenstine in the run-off.
I’d rather have Shannon win the nomination in the first round, though.
In 2004, when Coburn ran for the U.S. Senate, he said that, since he’s stronlgy pro-life and pro-death penalty, he thinks that doctors, who perform abortions, should be executed. A liberal wouldn’t say that.
Would a liberal..
Vote for big bailouts, gun control, amnesty and also fought against Ted Cruz’s efforts to repeal Obamacare.. siding with John McCain?
Is that the liberal you’re looking for??
Cause that’s Tom Coburn!!!!!
In the 11th District, the best candidate is Chris Balkema. He’s the only conservative, in the race, who has held an elected office. I got petition signatures for him.
I don’t know whom I support, in the 8th District, but it’s not liberal. Before the last election, all of those voters had a republican congressman, Joe Walsh, Bob Dold, Peter Roskam, or Randy Hultgren. In 2012, the majority of those voters had a republican state senator, including Matt Murphy, Kirk Dillard, or Carole Pankau. The main reason that Duckworth won is that voters believed her lies, when she said that Walsh didn’t pay his child support.
Phil, I am unfamiliar with Balkema’s and Senger’s record, but had read that Senger had been criticized by liberals for her anti-abortion bills. What are the issues on which Balkema is conservative and Senger liberal?
As for the IL-08, as redrawn in 2011, it was carried by Obama by 61.5%-37.1% in 2008 and by 57.4%-40.9% in 2012. In 2012, Obama’s victory margin in the IL-8 was actually higher than it was in the IL-10! If those voters aren’t liberal, then why the heck were like 60% of them voting for Obama?
And as for the reasons why Walsh los in 2012t, yeah, not paying child support may have been one of them—maybe Republicans in IL-08 shouldn’t have been scouring the unemployment lines or the bankruptcy filings for their nominee. While Duckworth is a scumbag, Walsh has no one to blame for his downfall but his own irresponsibility and dishonesty. He never warned the GOP about his irresponsibility, and then compounded it by lending his campaign money that he could have used to make his child-support payments:
“Before getting elected, he had told Laura Walsh that because he was out of work or between jobs, he could not make child support payments. So she was surprised to read in his congressional campaign disclosures that he was earning enough money to loan his campaign $35,000.
Joe personally loaned his campaign $35,000, which, given that he failed to make any child support payments to Laura because he had no money is surprising, Laura Walshs attorneys wrote in a motion filed in December seeking $117,437 in back child support and interest. Joe has paid himself back at least $14,200 for the loans he gave himself.
Walshs attorneys responded in court filings: Respondent admits that funds were loaned to his campaign fund. . . . Respondent admits that the campaign fund has repaid certain loans.”
I heard, from many sources (which I can’t remember, now), that Rep. Senger is stronly pro-choice. I heard Balkema say that he’s pro-life.
I don’t know why Obama did so well, in the 8th District. Duckworth got a lower percentage than Obama, in her district, so that district had a lot of split-ticket voting.
I didn’t know that James Lankford was a liberal. His voting record doesn’t bear that out. I’m inclined to support T.W. Shannon, but if Lankford wins, it’s not the end of the world.
Here’s an article on Darlene Senger’s pro-life bill that got voted out of committee and pissed off liberals: http://www.lifenews.com/2011/03/16/illinois-panel-passes-pro-life-bill-on-abortion-center-regs/
Senger also voted against authorizing same-sex marriage in IL: http://votesmart.org/bill/votes/46320#.UuBSfunD-70
The IL-11 is a suburban Chicago district that Obama carried by over 17% in 2012 (and by nearly 24% in 2008), so we can’t expect a 100% social conservative to beat Foster in that district. And unlike, say, the Rock Island/Miline/Rockford/Peoria/Galesburg IL-17, which Obama also carried by 17% but which is filled with blue-collar Democrats who are more socially conservative, the IL-11 includes Aurora, Naperville and other suburbs that aren’t hotbeds of social conservatism. Senger may be as socially conservative a candidate as could win that district.
It's a special election. Neither Lankford or Bridenstein need give up their seats to run.
This post sets forth the main objections to Lankford’s Senate candidacy from conservative groups (all based on his votes and on one public statement):
Obviously he’s no Dede Scozzafava, but neither is he as conservative as Speaker Shannon (or as Congressman Bridenstine).
I read about that bill that required better conditions for abortion clinics. I just checked her campaign site for a list of her views on important issues. That site doesn’t tell her views about any issues.
I thought it was to take place in November?
You’re correct, Senger is purposely silent on the issues. I agree that she should discuss at least some issues in her website, even though she may want to downplay her positions on social issues if they would hurt her in the general election. I’d rather have that 40.6% Romney district elect her because of her opposition to Obamacare, support for education, etc. and then have her vote to defund Planned Parenthood and the like than have Foster turn the election into a referendum on abortion. (Don’t get me wrong, I love turning elections into referenda on abortion, just not in districts in which doing so will make us lose.)
I visited Balkema’s website, and he does list some basic principles (some of which he may wish to flesh out). I also looked at a map of the IL-11 (see http://nationalatlas.gov/printable/images/pdf/congdist/pagecgd113_il.pdf), and noticed that it doesn’t include any part of Grundy County (which is where Balkema lives and where he serves in the County Board). Balkema does have ties to Joliet (where he works), which is in the SE part of the district, but he would be at a huge disadvantage in the general in the Cook, DuPage, Kane and NE Kendall precincts. For those voters, a candidate from Grundy County might as well hail from Iowa.
Oh, and national right-to-life groups certainly did not think that Senger’s bill merely “required better conditions for abortion clinics.” It’s the type of legislation that can drive out abortionists, and was the only aspect of the Texas abortion law that was challenged in federal court (a similar law in MS also was challenged because it would drive away the last few abortionists from the state).
I emailed a few members of the IL Center Right Coalition, a conservative, statewide group that was founded in 2003, and I asked for their opinions about Senger. I’m the ICRC vice-chairman and former chairma. Jon Zahm, the ICRC executive director and former chairman, said, “I prefer Balkema because Senger has some pro tax votes and Balkema is more conservative overall. He spoke at our meeting as well.” Jon was referring to a meeting that the ICRC held on Dec. 7, in Oakbrook Terrace. Senger was invited, but she didn’t respond to the email.
Not that I know of. I didn't mean to imply their was. Certainly he's better than Lankford who I would (as others have) compare to his "mentor" Tom Cole (not that Cole is Stalin as a few people seem to think). It's just that I see nothing particularly "right with him", a freshman US Rep., to elevate him over Shannon and justify some of the more aggressive endorsements I've seen.
So I'm wondering which blog or "tea party group" or radio talk show host that people put so much stock in is feeding people their opinions of him. It feels like one of those situations to me. His Grace, Mark Levin?
Levin and the Senate Conservatives Fund have given Bridenstine their seal of approval, and I don’t see any reason why he’d be undeserving of it. He’s been a solid conservative in the House, and I can’t name an issue he’s weak on
Shannon I don’t know enough about, but all I’ve heard is good. As long as OK sends one of these two to the senate, I’ll be happy.
Yes, they do have to give up their seats to run.
So I take it that the Executive director of the Center Right Coalition didn’t say that Senger is a social liberal. If casting a few “pro tax votes” after serving a few years in the IL state house is the worst thing they can say about her, her voting record must be pretty good.
Do you know who has never cast a “pro tax” vote? Any candidate who has never served in a state legislature, or compiled any type of record on which to judge him or her.
That being said, while Balkema certainly has been able to avoid compromise votes and the like by serving in the Grundy County Board instead of the IL House of Representatives, I suspect that Jon Zahm is correct in his assessment that Balkema is more conservative than Senger. But in that district, being more identifiably conservative and hailing from the boondocks outside the district aren’t exactly helpful traits if one wants to win the general election.
I’m no fan of taking Levin’s endorsements as the anointing of heaven and in fact given that he backed Liz Cheney I have to be skeptical. I think this Levin hive mind thing that some freepers have going on, is harmful.
Shannon seems like the clear choice to me. Perhaps it’s arrogant of me but I can’t see why 99% of conservatives wouldn’t agree despite what some radio host thinks.
So long as the Paulistinians aren’t the ones pushing Bridenstine (and they’re not—I checked), we’re good.
From what I’ve read about Bridenstine, he is *not* a Paultard, and if L. Ron Paul decides to endorse Bridenstine because he agrees with him on certain issues I won’t hold it against Bridenstine (just as I wouldn’t hold it against Shannon if Ron Paul or Mitch McConnell decide to jump on his bandwagon).
What has Bridenstine done wrong in your view? I think his preference for Cantor for Speaker is a mark against him in some regard. Not that Boehner is any better, but Cantor is terrible as well, but beyond that I can’t see anything wrong with him.
As I said, NOTHING. But what has he done right compared to Shannon? I think he should stay in the House a while, he just got there.