Current Weather
The Spy FM

Senate District 43 Special Election Underway

Filed by Michael Cross in Feature, Local News, News, Oklahoma Votes, Politics.
June 16, 2011

Click here to download audio

Four Republicans filled out the paperwork to run for a state Senate seat in Oklahoma and Cleveland County, but only two will make it on the ballot along with two Democrats.

The four candidates are running for a district which will only exist in its current form for one legislative session.

With five minutes left for the filing period for Senate District 43’s special election, 45-year-old Theresa Nelson walks into the State Election Board office to file as a Republican.

The week began normal enough with Moore Representative Paul Wesselhoft filing on Monday morning at nine, for the chance to replace Senator Jim Reynolds who is moving on to Cleveland County Treasurer.

During redistricting Senators moved 43 to the south away from the Moore area.

Wesselhoft was planning to take the seat for one year and then run for Senate District 15 which was being vacated by a term limited lawmaker.

But, by Wednesday afternoon, Wesselhoft changed his mind and withdrew from the race saying it would be too expensive to run back to back campaigns and he wasn’t getting any help from the GOP.

“The senate leadership would only support me financially if I moved to the new district 43 which runs down to Duncan, Marlow, Lindsay, Newcastle. I own a home in Moore. I’m not willing to sell my home and move.”

Wesselhoft’s decision prompted Theresa Nelson to spend part of her birthday in the election board office.

“I heard that Paul Wesselhoft was not going to seek and I didn’t want to go up against an incumbent but when I found out that he wasn’t I felt strongly about filing. I have a son that has special needs.”

Nelson says her 13-year-old son is part of the inspiration for her platform in running for the Senate.

“Children with special needs, seniors, I have a mother that’s had some special needs as wells, so families, my religion is important to me.”

She will be facing 41-year-old Greg Childers out of Del City.

Childers was teaching a class in Las Vegas on Wednesday and didn’t have a chance to comment to us.

The two nearly faced a third Republican candidate who came in with his paperwork complete, but he had a $200 money order rather than cashiers’ check for the filing fee.

He left to correct the mistake at 4:30 and didn’t make it back before filing ended at 5:00.

Along with the two Republicans, two Democrats are facing off for a primary on August 9th.

30-year-old Kenneth Meador served in the military for eight years and is working on a political science degree from Oklahoma City Community College.

He says he relishes the chance to serve the public even if it’s just for one year.

“Well it’s a phenomenal opportunity and I don’t think that any time any seat should go uncontested so it’s a great opportunity and I want to serve the people of Oklahoma and I would like to stand up for middle class families, seniors and our state’s children.”

Republicans currently holds Senate District 43, but the husband and father of a seven-year-old boy says he thinks he can return it to the Democratic Party.

“I think that at any time in this country a seat can be won by either party. It’s all about what the voters want.”

Meador is facing Del City 58-year-old Larry Foster in the primary.
Foster didn’t return calls for an interview.

The general election takes place on October 11th.

Leave a Reply

10AM to 11PM On Point

On Point

On Point unites distinct and provocative voices with passionate discussion as it confronts the stories that are at the center of what is important in the world today. Leaving no perspective unchallenged, On Point digs past the surface and into the core of a subject, exposing each of its real world implications.

Listen Live Now!

11AM to 12PM The Story

The Story

The Story with Dick Gordon brings the news home through first-person accounts. The live weekday program is passionate, personal, immediate and relevant to listeners, focusing on the news where it changes our lives, causes us to stop and rethink, inspires us.

View the program guide!

12PM to 1PM Fresh Air

Fresh Air

This one-hour program features Terry Gross' in-depth interviews with prominent cultural and entertainment figures, as well as distinguished experts on current affairs and news.

View the program guide!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center