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With Rep. John Enns (R-Enid) term limited in 2018, the open House District 41 seat has drawn a slew of contenders from various backgrounds. A police officer, legislative staff member, sign-language professional, health care professional, social worker, veteran and three teachers all seek nomination.

With six candidates on the Republican side, this #HotRace features one of the most contested primaries in the state. Democrats also have no shortage of options, with three candidates rounding out the left side of the ballot.

The primary will be held June 26. For either party, if no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the vote in their primary, HD 41 voters will participate in a runoff-primary election between a party’s top two vote-getters Aug. 28.

HD 41 in brief

  • Outgoing office holder: Rep. John Enns
  • Zip codes represented: 73012, 73016, 73025, 73028, 73056, 73078, 73099, 73142, 73701, 73703, 73705, 73718, 73720, 73727, 73733, 73734, 73735, 73736, 73739, 73742, 73743, 73750, 73753, 73754, 73761, 73762, 73773
  • Counties represented: Canadian, Garfield, Kingfisher, Oklahoma
  • Townships represented: Bison, Carrier, Cashion, Drummond, Enid, Hillsdale, Lahoma, Oklahoma City, Piedmont, Waukomis

Candidates appear in alphabetical order with incumbent party listed first. Photos and content have been taken from publicly available resources.

Denise Crosswhite Hader (R)

Profession: Staff member for Rep. Lewis Moore (R-Norman)
Experience: Field representative for Congressman Ernest Istook, legislative liaison for former Commissioner of Labor Mark Costello
Platform: Hader is a school consolidation advocate, but she opposes a universal method of implementation. She is a Second Amendment advocate and received an endorsement from the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association, with whom she’s been a member for several years.
Links: Facebook | Twitter

Karl Fahrenthold (R)

Profession: Flight-line crew chief at Tinker Air Force Base, freelance author
Experience: Part-time educator in Oklahoma City, veteran, union section steward
Platform: Fahrenthold’s website states a commitment to increasing education standards by an influx of strong leadership: “I have faith that with the right leadership a deal can be made that satisfies not only our teacher’s needs but our children’s as well, and all without breaking the bank.” Fahrenthold’s website also calls for “aggressive audits” on state agencies, and he refers to himself as a fiscal conservative.
Links: WebsiteFacebook | TwitterIntense Campaign Video 

Laurel Griesel (R)

Profession: Middle school science and math teacher
Experience: Earned a Bachelor of Science in elementary education from Oklahoma State University.
Platform: Griesel describes herself as a moderate Republican who believes in small government yet understands the importance of social services. Her website states she is pro-life and believes in making adoption programs “simple and affordable” to help mothers who are unprepared to have a child.
Links: WebsiteFacebook

Charo Guillory (R)

Profession: Self-employed contractor, Oklahoma QAST-certified sign-language interpreter
Experience: Recognized by Oklahoma Registry of Interpreters and the Oklahoma Association of the Deaf with the “Richard Mullins” and “golden hand” awards, respectively.
Platform: Guillory’s website links both the Oklahoma GOP platform and the Canadian County Republican platform. She then posts a list of items from each platform with which she disagrees, most of them pertaining to the protection of citizens with disabilities.
Links: WebsiteFacebook

Greg J. Ingle (R)

Profession: Police officer
Experience: Ran for Senate District 19 against Sen. Roland Pederson (R-Burlington) in 2016, receiving 10.8 percent of popular vote; elected in 2016 to be chairman of the Garfield County GOP and a city councilmember for Lahoma.
Platform: Ingle describes himself as a pro-life candidate. His Facebook states he will never take a position that would increase taxes on Oklahomans and that he will fight to reduce government regulation. He will “… furiously oppose any new legislation that attempts to take Oklahoman’s Second Amendment rights away.”
Links: WebsiteFacebook

Roxanne Pollard (R)

Profession: Certified surgical technologist/first assistant
Experience: Operator of a registered Angus cattle operation
Platform: Pollard is a critic of the Affordable Care Act, yet supports “… reliable and affordable” state-based health care services. Her website states she will support policies that uphold “… traditional values and Christian faith.” She cites a vested interest in supporting Oklahoma agriculture.
Links: Website

Sara Peterson (D)

Profession: Social worker
Experience: Graduate of the University of Oklahoma
Platform: Peterson believes parents should have a choice in where they send their students for school but opposes school voucher programs. A gun owner herself, Peterson’s website states she supports “more consistent and nationwide” background checks for the purchase of firearms. She is a proponent of medicinal marijuana.
Links: WebsiteFacebook

Jennie Scott (D)

Profession: Fourth-grade teacher at Garfield Elementary
Experience: Teacher of the Year for the Fulton County, Florida, district in 2012
Platform: Scott’s website states she believes Oklahoma can attract and retain quality teachers with competitive pay and loan-forgiveness programs. Per her website, “… she believes constant tax breaks for the wealthy and powerful special interests/industries have left our state in crisis.” She advocates for a “fair tax system.”
Links: Website

Tyler Smith (D)

Profession: Teacher
Experience: Smith’s parents were teachers; he and his wife are teachers.
Platform: Smith emphasizes finding bipartisan solutions for Oklahoma’s issues. His Crowdpac discusses what he believes are Oklahoma’s greatest problems: “Our schools are in crisis, prisons are overcrowded, and mental health issues are being overlooked.” He also addresses a need to help Oklahomans who struggle with addiction.
Links: Facebook