Online journalism is a fast game. Like jai alai, it takes heightened awareness. Locally. Politically. It also demands strict deadlines. To those ends, I found today’s Daily Filter inspiration on Reddit, and the following thought train chuffed out of the station.
On Monday, the Oklahoma State Election Board tweeted that the three-day filing period for aspiring candidates in Senate District 34 had officially opened. For what? A state Senate race? In 2015? But then I remembered: SCANDAL!
Republican minister Rick Brinkley most recently held the Tulsa-area Senate position, but his resignation went into effect Aug. 20 after he pleaded guilty to federal charges of embezzling more than $1.8 million from Tulsa’s Better Business Bureau. The Tulsa World and other media reported that the embezzlement fueled Brinkley’s gambling habit, which makes this 2008 post on the Collinsville Chamber of Commerce site even more ironic:
“Rick Brinkley (now of the Tulsa Better Business Bureau) pointed out to the Chamber of Commerce that for many years he told his Collinsville Community Church congregation to be trusting, but now spends most of his time telling people to not be so trusting.”
With Brinkley awaiting sentencing on Nov. 20, the political world moves forward. I wonder who will take his place?
According to The McCarville Report, State Sen. Kyle Loveless (R-OKC) took a break from his current crusade for civil asset forfeiture reform to speculate about the upcoming District 34 special election. In an Aug. 11 comment thread on his personal Facebook wall, Loveless mentioned air conditioner specialist Randy Brogdon as a potential candidate for the now-vacant seat. A Tulsa World article posted at midnight the same day fueled speculation with the inclusion of the line, “[Brogdon] is considering running for the post.”
The speculation makes sense. First, Brogdon currently sits as chair of Oklahoma’s GOP. Further, Brogdon held that same District 34 seat from 2002 to 2010 before launching a failed gubernatorial campaign. Last, Brogdon is no stranger to special elections: In early 2014, he abandoned his second run at the Oklahoma governor’s office to enter a special election for the U.S. Senate seat made available by Tom Coburn’s retirement. He lost to now-Sen. James Lankford in the 2014 Republican primary.
So far, John Feary is the only candidate to have publicly announced explicit intentions to run for the position, according to The McCarville Report. As the Wednesday deadline approaches, NonDoc will update this story with additional filings.