(Update: On Tuesday, June 28, Collin Duel and Karmin Grider advanced to an Aug. 23 runoff election. The winner of that election will represent House District 31.)
The successor to Rep. Garry Mize in House District 31 will either be a military combat veteran, a former vice chairwoman of the Logan County Republican Party or a former Hollywood actor.
Collin Duel, Karmin Grider and Logan Trainer are all on the June 28 Republican primary ballot for the race in House District 31, which includes Guthrie, north Edmond, and parts of Cashion, Cedar Valley and Cimarron City.
Mize, who was first elected in 2018, is not seeking reelection to House District 31 this year.
The following information was gathered from publicly available resources, and candidates are presented in alphabetical order. The primary election will be held June 28. If no candidate wins a simple majority of votes in the primary, then the top two finishers will compete in an Aug. 23 runoff election. This race will not see the general election, as no candidate from another party filed to run.
Profession/Background: Duel is an attorney and a military veteran. According to his campaign website, Duel was deployed four times to Afghanistan as an Army Ranger before being honorably discharged in 2013. Duel then earned a law degree from the University of Oklahoma in 2019 and started his own practice, Duel Law, P.L.L.C. His wife, Hannah, is a public school teacher.
Platform: While Duel’s campaign website does not detail specific policy plans, it claims he will “restore election integrity, protect the sanctity of life and protect the Second Amendment.” Duel is a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association.
Profession/Background: According to her campaign website, Grider graduated with a master’s degree in executive leadership from Liberty University. She completed her undergraduate work at the University of Oklahoma. She currently works as a freelance leadership and business consultant.
Grider served as the vice chairwoman for the Logan County Republican Party until March 2020, when she resigned to challenge Mize in that year’s race for HD 31. Grider received 2,035 votes (33.2 percent) in the primary election, falling behind Mize’s 4,092 votes (66.8 percent).
Platform: Opposing abortion has been a key component of Grider’s campaigns. In a March interview with Red River TV, Grider said she supports overturning Roe v. Wade and supports school vouchers that would provide state dollars to students to spend on private school tuition or other education expenses. Grider said she will make an effort to keep her constituents informed.
“I’m going to be reporting to my constituents what my voting record is, my absences. They are going to know what laws are going to go into effect in November,” Grider said.
On the home page of her campaign website, Grider claims she will “fight proactively to make certain our methods prevent fraud and ensure election integrity.”
Grider was named in a 2020 Southwest Ledger story about how 12 adults, including Grider, were registered to vote at a single home in Guthrie. The house is also the registered address for Ekklesia of Oklahoma, a grassroots Christian political organization that prioritizes the elimination of abortion and that has supported candidates who challenge Republican incumbents from the right.
On the Ekklesia of Oklahoma Facebook page, the organization’s most recent post from May 23 criticizes Duel for some sort of survey that has since expired.
“This is the disgusting work of the establishment! Dirty nasty politics full of lies and deceit,” the post begins before linking to Duel’s Facebook page and encouraging people to “let this Establishment Hack and his puppet maskers know what you think.”
Profession/Background: According to his campaign website, Trainer previously worked as an actor in the Los Angeles area. He then joined a management training program with UPS in Seattle, before he and his wife, “sickened by Seattle’s progressive politics,” moved to Oklahoma to raise their kids in a “conservative environment.”
Trainer currently works at Jackie Cooper BMW, according to his campaign website. He is also a member of Quail Springs Baptist Church.
Platform: In the issues section of his campaign website, Trainer writes that he opposes tax and regulatory increases, critical race theory and “ideas like ‘gender fluidity.'” Trainer writes that he is a “proud product of public education” but also supports school vouchers, writing that “money should follow the child, not buildings or bureaucracies.”